Phase 2 of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe recently came to a close with the sub-atomic saga, Ant-Man. As the studio rolls out Phase 3, with their clash of the titans pic Captain America: Civil War leading the way, their brand new Phase 2 Collection offers fans a look back at the second chapter of Marvel’s cinematic era. Including six films and bonus features across 13 discs, from Iron Man 3 to Ant-Man, the boxed collector's set also includes several deleted scenes, a pile of interesting memorabilia (see it all here), and a replica orb and Infinity Stone from Guardians of the Galaxy.
Released December 8, 2015, the collection also gives fans several interesting featurettes, which go behind the making of upcoming films including Civil War and Doctor Strange. By far, the most fascinating bonus from the collection is an 11 minute retrospective about construction of the entire MCU, which you can in the video above.
Originally posted on Tumblr, the video features Marvel luminaries Kevin Feige, Joss Whedon (Age of Ultron), and James Gunn (GOTG), as well as interviews from stars like Robert Downey, Jr. (Iron Man), Tom Hiddleston (Loki), and Elizabeth Olsen (Scarlet Witch). Throughout the in-depth short, the writers, directors, and stars discuss the formation of the films, entertaining trivia about the post-credit tags, and how the little Easter eggs hidden throughout the series point not only to the formation of the larger universe, but the next phases as well.
“I remember being a kid, and going to movies when you were rewarded for sitting through the credits,” Feige says, ”we got to the point where we were making our own films; we always thought it would be fun to do that.’”
As fans are treated to a behind-the-scenes look at the production, Marvel creators also delve into their tether between the present and future. "S.H.I.E.L.D. is the glue," studio co-president Louis D’Esposito, says, "the connective tissue" that ties the films together. As in past, it seems Nick Fury and crew will also play a major role in the Marvel’s future films. It’s also fascinating how little concepts and inside jokes from different producers and directors came together to create that cohesive whole, linked by Feige and his stable of writers into Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The studio manages to pack a large amount of substance into the featurette’s less-than 11-minute run time. It’s a true testament to the challenges and visions of the mind-numbingly large MCU. The bonus feature also includes some fun in-jokes you may or may not have caught, [SPOILER ALERT] such as Benicio Del Toro’s Collector talking with Howard the Duck and the amusing faux-psychiatry session between Tony Stark and Bruce Banner. Even with a multi-billion dollar franchise on their hands, it’s good to see that Marvel’s sense of humor is still intact.
As Phase 3 begins, it will be interesting to see whether Marvel stays the course with their winning formulas, or adapts them as other studios embrace the umbrella-universe franchise concept. At this point, though, it seems like nothing can slow down the MCU juggernaut. Hopefully, the studio releases a retrospective featurette for all of their upcoming phases, so we can look back and marvel at their construction as well.
Captain America: Civil War will release on May 6, 2016, followed by Doctor Strange – November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man – July 28, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; Black Panther – February 16, 2018; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – March 8, 2019; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; Inhumans – July 12, 2019; and as-yet untitled Marvel movies on May 1, July 10 and November 6, 2020.