[Update: Marvel Studios plans out to 2021]
Marvel Studios is making a lot of movies. We know that. But just how far are they planing ahead and what's next on tap?
We've had many discussions here on Screen Rant about the future of Marvel and of the many projects they currently have in development. With Thor and Captain America coming out next year, followed by The Avengers and Runaways in 2012, what's next on the slate? Outside of the expected sequels to these potential solo franchises, actor Clark Gregg who plays S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Coulson in Marvel's shared movie universe claims that The Avengers is just the "first act of this giant epic."
Would this epic storyline represent the featured backdrop continued through Avengers sequels? Marvel President of Consumer Products for Marvel, Paul Gitter, spoke with Bleeding Cool about the future of the studio, discussing its properties as more of a brand with the tagline "Avengers Assemble" rather than simply films (it's all about the merchandise). The key piece of information revealed in their talks it that of Marvel's master plan coming together for 2017.
What that means exactly is open for debate, but we can assume that the conclusion of the (intergalactic?) story set up in The Avengers will lead to this finale and that the head honchos have a pretty good idea of what movies they'll be working on next. Gitter wouldn't reveal any more details on the subject, so let's discuss.
We have The Avengers line-up as revealed at San Diego Comic-Con 2010, but it's missing two characters in The Wasp and Ant-Man. Edgar Wright is still set to make the Ant-Man spy movie at some point in the future as a solo film where he can later take part as part of The Avengers, likely in its sequel. Where The Wasp could be introduced is still unconfirmed, but Joss Whedon did say there will be more than one main female character in The Avengers...
Runaways is shooting next March for a 2012 release and that's definitely happening, but the schedule for its succeeding projects has yet to be confirmed. Iron Fist and Dr. Strange have writers; Marvel is in talks with someone for Luke Cage; Marvel Pres Kevin Feige is interested in Black Panther and Guardians of the Galaxy; Iron Man 3 will probably be made for 2013; Sam L. Jackson and others have dropped word about a SHIELD movie and Scarlett Johansson is in talks for a possible Black Widow spinoff.
After The Avengers, there's a good chance Disney and Marvel Studios could bump up production to release more than two features per year, pending the success of their 2011 and 2012 movies. It's during that time when we could see Marvel digging into their library to showcase others from their vast character line-up and bringing more of them together for The Avengers 2 and other crossovers, leading down the path to whatever happens in 2017 (The Avengers 3?).
Could we see a major event from the comic books (i.e. Marvel Civil War, Secret Invasion)?
Thor opens May 5, 2011; The First Avenger: Captain America hits July 22, 2011 and The Avengers is scheduled to debut May 4, 2012.
Source: Bleeding Cool