What to expect from Marvel in the coming years

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Tony Stark is dead. Steve Rogers is 90. Vision and Black Widow exploded. The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is in shambles. 

But—fans do have plenty to be excited about. Over the next two to three years, countless predictably thrilling films are scheduled for release, further expanding—and rebuilding—the narratives we have come to love.

Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow is scheduled for release on May 7—a year after it’s initial release date. 

Optimism for this film is quite limited. Due to the decisions made in Marvel’s most recent box office hit Avengers: Endgame, fan’s fans aren’t expecting much story progression. 

For years, fans have been calling for a Black Widow solo movie and, during her tenure, Marvel had countless opportunities to make this happen. Yet—characters like Captain Marvel and The Wasp found themselves leading their own films while Johansson found herself vaulting her character off a cliff.

The timing is what confuses me. Why even bother with Ant-Man while your most popular and globally recognized female lead is designated for piggybacks and sex appeal?

Regardless of Black Widow’s eventual fate, her solo film does give the opportunity to introduce some new characters to the MCU. David Harbour’s Red Guardian could be in for the long haul and any character played by Florence Pugh will very likely be written into future scripts.

Moreover, Marvel fans can expect the third—and likely final—film in the Tom Holland Spider Man franchise in December 2021. The film is said to pick up right where Far From Home left off, although no further plot details have been released. 

There are endless questions to be answered! How will Peter function in a world where everyone knows he’s Spider-Man? Do they think he’s a terrorist? Will Ned ever find love?

Marvel has an exciting premise in front of them and fans can only hope they spark a deal with Sony to broaden Peter Parker’s role in the MCU for years to come.

Come May 2022, the most anticipated Marvel film is scheduled for it’s global release: Thor: Love and Thunder. The cast alone is enough to get fans excited. Chris Hemsworth returning as Thor. Tessa Thompson is back as Valkyrie. Not to mention Natalie Portman’s revitalization as Jane Foster, who is—highly speculated to play the role of The Mighty Thor.

To the joy of fans everywhere, directing royalty and comedy legend Taika Waititi is back on the project to direct. After his Oscar-nominated film Jojo Rabbit garnered nothing but raving reviews, Waititi has become a hot commodity.

“It is so insane and it’s also very romantic,” said Waititi when describing the film. “I want to make something that I’ve never done or never cared for.” This very well could be his best film to date.

Black Panther 2 is another film fans can expect around July of 2022. How the Marvel team goes about this, having lost their leading protagonist Chadwick Boseman to cancer in 2020, remains unknown.

“We’re not going to have a CG Chadwick and we’re not recasting T’Challa,” said Kevin Feige. By all accounts, this is the right call. Centre the story around T’Challa’s sister Shuri and call it a day. From the beginning, she’s had the most potential of the entire supporting cast.

But, looking into the not-so-distant future, WandaVision was just released last week on Disney+. This is the first major production released by Marvel in over a year, and so far, it hasn’t given fans much to get excited about. 

It’s become extremely clear that someone on the production team for this project watched a little too much Leave it to Beaver during their youth. Although the series will surely pick up along the way, the first two episodes have been nothing more than a letdown. 

As well, there are countless untitled projects slated to debut sometime between 2023 and 2024. Guardians of the Galaxy Three, another Ant-Man and The Wasp, a Fantastic Four reboot, Blade, even the X-Men are scheduled to enter the MCU.

With this much to look forward to and nothing but time, fans are left to speculate. The question all Marvel fans truly want answered still remains a mystery: what is the MCU without Tony Stark? Unfortunately, fans might have to wait just a little bit longer.

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