During the Avengers panel at New York Comic-Con this past weekend, Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige had to field several questions about a topic that fans are already buzzing about: Where does the Marvel Movie Universe go next, once The Avengers is finished its run in theaters?
In addition to what Feige said during the panel about possible Marvel Cosmic projects like Guardians of the Galaxy, he also dropped word that Avengers 2 will likely feature a different team roster than the first film.
IGN was able to get the scoop when they asked Feige direct if we would be seeing some different Avengers in the next film - to which Feige responded:
"Absolutely. That's the fun of it -- introducing new characters. Seeing: 'How will things change after Iron Man goes through his next adventure? After Thor goes through his next adventure? If we do another Cap adventure, how will things change? The dynamic between them? Their own worlds? So that the dynamic in Avengers 2 is actually quite different than it is in the first one."
Now, on the surface, this is a no-brainer: Marvel has signed a lot of the actors in The Avengers to multi-film contracts, yes. On the other hand, there are actors in the cast (like Robert Downey Jr.) who will have been working on Marvel projects for over half a decade by the time Avengers 2 even begins pre-production; Downey could (and will likely) want to move on to other things.
Equally real is the fact that A) the general movie going public could be ready for some new blood in Avengers 2 (Black Panther, Hank Pym, Wasp), and B) Marvel is probably going to be expanding their universe anyway, trying to introduce characters like Dr. Strange and/or Ant-Man.
Then there's C) the fact that the introduction of new characters and new stories for established characters (in sequels like Iron Man 3, Thor 2 and Captain America 2), will change the entire circumstances of Marvel's movie world. In that sense, the Avengers sequel could, say, have Tony Stark as an administrator for S.H.I.E.L.D., or some metahuman liaison to the government, rather than playing an active role in the team (cue brief RDJ cameo and War Machine replacement).
The only question is: which Avengers would assemble for the sequel, and which ones would be missing from active duty?
Which knew Avengers would YOU like to see in the sequel?
The Avengers will be in theaters on May 4, 2012.
The Avengers 2 doesn't have a solid release date yet, but we do know Marvel is currently planning to have another major film event in 2017.