Now that Marvel’s Phase II is well underway, questions have been asked about what the audience will see in Phase III. Marvel is still leagues ahead of DC, so that gives them two options in the next phase. Will they maintain their lead by playing it safe (another sequel) or will they take another chance with an untested property?
Marvel’s Phase III films will begin in July 2015 with the untested Ant-Man, directed by Edgar Wright of The World’s End. This is a film that has been talked about since Phase 1, but no one thought it was going to get made; fast forward five years and we have a director, a star in Paul Rudd, and a rumored love interest in Evangeline Lily. Besides the July 17th release date for Ant-Man, Marvel has set two other dates for future films: May 6th, 2016 and May 5th, 2017. However, with no titles announced, the Internet has gone haywire speculating the possible films.
The naïve have speculated that these dates could be reserved for Doctor Strange or Black Panther; however, if these characters are not introduced in The Avengers 2: Age of Ultron, then it is highly unlikely they will get their own film. The online realists believe that that these dates are most likely reserved for the Captain America or Thor sequels; even a new Hulk movie is more probable than Doctor Strange and Black Panther.
However, the movie website Joblo has just broke a story; they claim that a reputable source told them which film will be released on May 6th, 2016. The film will be the Guardians of the Galaxy sequel. While it is not shocking that Marvel put their support behind Guardians, this decision backs an unproven product.
With that said, if Guardians bombs at the box office, Marvel would not be phased because of their established properties. But, the studio must feel that this film will garner enough financial success to warrant a sequel; they have also planned a Guardians of the Galaxy animated series, which will premiere in Fall 2015 on the Disney channel.
There is still no word what the other film will be; I am sure in the coming months Marvel’s Kevin Feige will release that information. I want to be naïve and hope that a future film will be about Doctor Strange; the addition of Scarlett Witch and magic in The Avengers 2 could result in a Doctor film.
At this point, I realized ‘to never say never;’ in the early 2000s no one would have dreamed of an Avengers film. And with Kevin Feige stating that there are planned films until 2021 any property could be made.