16 July 2012

State of the Upcoming Marvel Movie Slate - 2013 and Beyond

Hoping to build on the success of Marvel's The Avengers which has eclipsed $600 million domestic (nearly $1.5 billion worldwide), movie production of properties based on Marvel characters are moving full steam ahead. Along with Marvel Studio's own post-Avengers Phase 2 plan, there are more movies in development for the X-Men franchise, Spider-Man, and a couple of other new kids on the block. With fresh Comic Con scoop, lets take a look at the current slate of Marvel movie's currently being churned out of the machine.


Iron Man 3 - 03 May 2013

The movie to usher in the next phase for Marvel Studios is appropriately a sequel to Iron Man, the movie that got the ball rolling in 2008. For those that are counting, this will be Iron Man's fourth major appearance in just 5 years. While its rumored that the movie is based on the Extremis story arc, details are still under wraps - though it looks like Iron Man's nemesis the ring nearing Mandarin will be included. In any case, IM3 will likely be another box office hit, but IM4 may not happen right away, giving some of Marvel's other up and comers a chance to shine.

The Wolverine - 26 July 2013

The X-Men of course are not a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, instead being developed at Fox. Regardless, the mutants are the foundation of another fruitful franchise. The Wolverine promises to explore Logan's days in Japan and his clash with the Silver Samurai and Viper. The movie is more or less planned as a stand alone feature hoping to distance itself from the mediocre X-Men Origins: Wolverine which hit in 2009. Despite that film's poor reputation, The Wolverine remains highly anticipated and should keep a Wolverine solo franchise alive.

Thor: The Dark World - 08 November 2013

More so than with Iron Man 3, I am looking forward to the Thor sequel. I am hoping for additional trodding through the nine realms to places like Muspelheim, land of the fire demons or Svartalfheim land of Dark Elves. Also, as much as I have enjoyed Loki, this would be a good time to introduce the Enchantress to the mix. There is so much potential for this sequel, I hope its not squandered in a little town in New Mexico.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier - 04 April 2014

Partly because of the period setting, Captain America: The First Avenger is my favorite Marvel Studios film to date (and yes I am including The Avengers). Having said that, the soldier out of time aspect of Cap will be interesting to explore, though I sure hope that WWII works its way into the sequel somehow. I am ecstatic about the choice of the Winter Soldier story. This is a lot more compelling and personal than Baron Zemo or the return of Red Skull. And for the record, the Captain America suit >> The Avengers suit.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 - 02 May 2014

As enjoyable as The Amazing Spider-Man was, I anticipate the sequel besting the original. So many plot points were left open, in particular the mystery surrounding Peter's parents. Also, we still haven't even seen J. Jonah Jameson, the Osborns (not the Osbournes), MJ, or a top tier villain. Maybe we could even build to the Sinister Six as hinted by producers. The potential is endless and I have almost gotten the bad taste of Spider-Man 3 out of my mouth. Luckily the wait for this sequel is pretty short.

X-Men First Class Sequel - 18 July 2014

X-Men First Class was a brilliant prequel which rejuvenated the X-Men franchise and it did it without even tapping into the popularity Wolverine. Unfortunately, a sequel to First Class now faces the daunting position of being sandwiched into the established (and suboptimal) continuity of the series. One rumored solution is to base the next film on the classic Days of Future Past story arc from the comics which involved time travel from an alternate dystopian future. This type of story would allow the series to branch off and forge ahead with a new continuity a la the Star Trek reboot and would also enable the addition of some as of yet unused but popular mutants such as the time traveling Cable and Bishop. Time / space travel have been an element of the X-Men comics and it would be nice to see the franchise expand a little farther into sci-fi territory. Time travel, the 70's, mutants? Sounds like a hit.

Guardians of the Galaxy - 01 Aug 2014

I had REALLY high hopes for the Green Lantern movie. Guardians of the Galaxy is Marvel's take on "cosmic space cops," at least the closet thing to it and so now GotG has me crossing my fingers for good luck. The team has been through all sort of iterations over the years but the current lineup boasts the fan favorite gun-totting Rocket Raccoon as well as space tree Groot. Other members to be included are Drax the Destroyer, Gamora, and Star-Lord. This movie will serve perfectly to introduce Thanos (teased during the end credits of Marvel's The Avengers) and to expand the Marvel Cinematic Universe into new corners.

Marvel's The Avengers 2 - TBA 2015

Was there ever any doubt after Marvel's The Avengers record breaking performance that there would be a sequel? Who exactly will be included remains a bit in the air as does the official release date - but my money is on the first Friday of May, Marvel's favorite weekend of the year.

In Development

Big Hero 6 - TBA 2014

Along with the offially icannounced movies coming down the pike from Marvel are films that are at least rumored, if not in active development. Perhaps the farthest along is a movie that would be the first Disney animated Marvel movie, Big Hero 6. According to the Blue Sky Disney blog, the film could hit theaters as early as Fall of 2014. I admit that I don't know too much about this property other than it is a team of heroes put together by the Japanese government which includes the Silver Samurai (coincidentally the villain in 2013's Wolverine). This could be a lot of fun and if successful could open all sorts of doors for Disney-Marvel team ups.

Ant-Man or Black Panther (Likely 2015)

Surely the Avengers line-up will expand and two of the favorites vying for a spot on the team are Ant-Man and Black Panther. Although Marvel surely has plans for more sequels for established characters, they also need to keep things fresh with new franchises and before Guardians of the Galaxy was announced as the second secret Marvel movie for 2014, one of these two was the favorite for the coveted spot. Ant-Man in particular has a lot going for him including active development by director Edgar Wright who previewed test footage of the hero at Comic Con. Its also been rumored that Ant-Man would appear in the Captain America 2 post credits sequence. We shall see. In any case, I expect one of these heroes to be ready for prime time perhaps as the second release in 2015 or possibly as a third Marvel Studios movie in 2014. 

Doctor Strange or The Inhumans (Possible 2016)

Doctor Strange is another hero that is often mentioned by Marvel Studios as "in the works" and I am sure that eventually he will get the big screen treatment. Its just a matter of timing. Strange does offer a lot of potential by opening the film franchise to the supernatural realms of the Marvel Universe in a similar way that Guardians hopes to tap the Cosmic. The Inhumans is a whole other ball of wax. The race of evolutionarily advanced beings lives on the dark side of the moon under the leadership of their silent king, Black Bolt. Maybe if Guardians is a hit, the Inhumans will be allowed to broaden the cosmic footprint.

The Fantastic Four (Possible 2015)

20th Century Fox currently holds the rights to the Fantastic Four, but if they do not produce a film in the next couple of years, the license will revert to Marvel Studios. Fox doesn't seem willing to let that happen and have just announced plans for Chronicle director Josh Trank to direct a reboot. The movie (which may or may not even be written yet) is slated to enter production after the X-Men First Class sequel (set for 2014) for a possible 2015 release. This could be good. The franchise definitely deserves a better treatment than it has thus far received. I wonder if Dr. Doom would be held back for a possible sequel - if so, I hope they skip Mole Man and go for Annihilus of the Negative Zone.

Daredevil (Possible 2014)

Daredevil is in the same camp as Fantastic Four only its clock is set to expire at any point. It sounds like a Daredevil reboot needs to enter production by the end of this year unless Fox intends to lose the rights to the property. David Slade who was planning to direct is now off the project due to scheduling conflicts. If Fox does get around to slopping this together, it would probably come out in 2014 though my hopes for a rushed Daredevil are not high.

Venom (Possible 2015)

Along with Spider-Man, Sony maintains the rights to Venom and the studio has expressed plans to launch a spin-off franchise. Whether the symbiote will be worn by Eddie Brock or will follow modern comic continuity and serves as special ops gear for Flash Thompson remains unknown. I do think this movie has a good shot of being made, especially if Sony throws in the towel on their other licensed anti-hero, Ghost Rider.

Its a good time to be a geek.


  1. I think The Inhumans moive would be Marvel,s Best choice with all the tech they have at Their hands That is Marvel Studio,s And Disney?

  2. I am hoping the Venom movie makes the cut and that Marvel doesn't disappoint. This could be an awesome series. Especially if they went forth and included Carnage.