- Production of all Marvel movies and TV series is on hold because of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Film premieres were delayed and only some TV show productions are set to resume in the near future.
- Disney delayed all the Phase 4 films a few months ago, and Phase 4 Disney+ shows could see delays of their own.
- Phase 4 will extend well into 2022, according to the current schedule.
- A report says Marvel won’t even attend the virtual Comic-Con 2020 event in late July, implying there won’t be Avengers 5 or MCU Phase 5 announcements of any kind in the near future.
Marvel Studios was riding on the massive success of Avengers: Endgame last summer when it took the stage at Comic-Con 2019 to announce the MCU Phase 4 titles. Kevin Feige & Co. certainly surprised fans with the revelation that Phase 4 will include an unexpectedly high number of TV series that will stream on Disney+. These limited TV shows will be intertwined with the regular Marvel Studios movies part of the next stage of adventures. Together, the mix of regular pictures and TV shows will further advance the story and eventually deliver a crossover movie as thrilling as Endgame. But as the Hall H event progressed, it became increasingly clear there will not be an Avengers 5 installment in Phase 4.
We explained at the time that Marvel needs to rebuild the MCU. The fallen or retired heroes have to be replaced with fresh faces. Thanos also needs a proper replacement going forward. Not to mention that Marvel now had access to Fantastic Four, X-Men, and Deadpool following Disney’s Fox acquisition. Marvel did confirm the Fox properties will be used in the future, without announcing any actual projects. There might be no new Avengers adventures until all the new superheroes and bad guys are introduced, as we also said at the time. And sadly, it’s now looking like 2020 won’t be the year when Marvel unveils the upcoming title in the Avengers franchise.
MCU Phase 4 was supposed to begin on May 1st and last through November 2021. From Black Widow to Thor 4, we’d have 14 different titles to enjoy, eight of which would be TV series. But then the novel coronavirus pandemic happened and Disney delayed all of its movie and TV show releases. Disney doesn’t want to squander movies like Black Widow by releasing them on Disney+ as theaters remain clothes. Plus, the studio also had to stop all production on all of its unfinished projects, including work on the TV shows that were supposed to premiere in this year and next year’s slate of films and series. There’s no point having Black Widow out on Disney+ too early if you can’t follow it up with the rest of the Phase 4 titles that are planned.
Without the novel coronavirus, we would have been at a point where Black Widow had already premiered, and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier would be ready for an August release. The Eternals would follow in November, and WandaVision and Loki would be released by the end of the year. Marvel would be in a position where it would be compelled to announce new MCU projects for 2022 and beyond.
Phase 4 is now set to end on March 25th, 2022, when Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is scheduled to premiere. Mind you, we’re assuming that Phase 4 ends with the final movie in this stage. Let’s not forget that Marvel also confirmed plans to release Black Panther 2 and Captain Marvel 2 in May 2020 and July 2022. These could be the first Phase 5 films or the final Phase 4 pictures. That’s assuming the coronavirus pandemic won’t stop Marvel from releasing the films and TV series it already announced on time.
To put it differently, Marvel doesn’t even have to worry about pleasing fans with announcements for upcoming attraction. As it is right now, Marvel has enough on its plate to carry us through the next two years. Now, word on the street is that Marvel will not make an appearance at this year’s Comic-Con.
The event will be held online between July 22nd and July 26th, and it will be virtual like any other press event during the COVID-19 pandemic. Marvel has yet to make any announcements about Comic-Con 2020, but Deadline squeezed this bit of Marvel information in the last paragraph about a different Comic-Con film:
Searchlight is the second film studio after Orion to date that’s hosting a panel at Comic-Con@Home. We hear Marvel is sitting on the sidelines, and that Warner Bros.’ feature side of DC will hold their goods for their own virtual fan confab in August.
Assuming an Avengers 5 film is in the cards for MCU Phase 5, or at least a limited TV series under the Avengers brand, it seems we shouldn’t expect any announcements from Marvel this July. The same goes for any plans related to Fantastic Four and X-Men.