You have years of Marvel movie magic ahead of you. Here’s the lineup.
Marvel Studios has spent the better part of a decade building up its cinematic universe, to the point where it can now support two or three interconnected sequels and spinoff movies each year. With the first generation of heroes gradually making way for new characters like Black Panther and Doctor Strange, we’ve put together a timeline of everything we know about Marvel’s upcoming movies.
Marvel Movie release dates
Black Panther, Feb. 16, 2018
Directed by Ryan Coogler (Creed, Fruitvale Station), Black Panther is one of Marvel’s most exciting new projects. It stars Chadwick Boseman as the Black Panther (aka King T’Challa of the fictional African nation of Wakanda), reprising his role from Captain America: Civil War.
Boseman is supported by an all-star cast: Michael B. Jordan as the villain Erik Killmonger, Lupita Nyong’o as T’Challa’s bodyguard Nakia, Forest Whitaker as the politician Zuri, Angela Bassett as T’Challa’s stepmother Ramonda, Get Out’s Daniel Kaluuya as his friend and advisor W’Kabi, Martin Freeman as the U.S. government agent Everett K. Ross, and Andy Serkis as the arms dealer Ulysses Klaue.
According to a plot synopsis released by Marvel, we can expect the movie to focus on T’Challa as he takes on his new role as the leader Wakanda.
Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” follows T’Challa who, after the death of his father, the King of Wakanda, returns home to the isolated, technologically advanced African nation to succeed to the throne and take his rightful place as king. But when a powerful old enemy reappears, T’Challa’s mettle as king—and Black Panther—is tested when he is drawn into a formidable conflict that puts the fate of Wakanda and the entire world at risk. Faced with treachery and danger, the young king must rally his allies and release the full power of Black Panther to defeat his foes and secure the safety of his people and their way of life.
Black Panther is on track to be one of the most popular superhero movies ever made, setting records for ticket pre-sales.
Avengers: Infinity War, May 4, 2018
Filmed back-to-back with the untitled fourth Avengers movie, Infinity War is a gigantic team-up between every major Marvel character we’ve seen so far.
Infinity War is the culmination of the much-foreshadowed Infinity Gauntlet storyline, bringing together six powerful objects known as Infinity Stones. This includes the blue cube Tesseract that powered Hydra’s weapons in Captain America: The First Avenger, the “mind stone” embedded in Vision’s forehead, and the “power stone” that drove the plot of Guardians of the Galaxy. Marvel’s greatest heroes will join forces to defeat Thanos (Josh Brolin), who previously appeared in the first Guardians movie.
The first trailer revealed a bearded Captain America (easily the most-discussed aspect of this movie, because people are thirsty), a blonde Black Widow, and Bruce Banner back in human form after Thor: Ragnarok. Marvel hasn’t revealed much about the actual plot, but we expect to see something about Asgard’s fate after Thor: Ragnarok, and what happened to Bucky Barnes in Wakanda after Captain America: Civil War.
Ant-Man and the Wasp, July 6, 2018
Following the events of Civil War, Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) is now an international fugitive. This sequel to 2015’s Ant-Man will feature Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) in a more prominent role as the Wasp, and introduces Michelle Pfeiffer as Janet Van Dyne, the original Wasp.
Walton Goggins will play the villain, while Laurence Fishburne joins the cast as Dr. Bill Foster, aka Giant Man. The trailer depicts Hope Van Dyne as Ant-Man’s new partner in crime, showcasing both characters’ ability to shrink and grow at will. Unlike the deeper political meaning and bold aesthetic we saw in films like Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther, this looks like a pretty standard action/comedy.
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Captain Marvel, March 8, 2019
Brie Larson stars in this hotly anticipated Captain Marvel adaptation, the MCU’s first female-led movie since the franchise began in 2008. The screenplay is being co-written by Nicole Perlman (Guardians of the Galaxy) and Meg LeFauve (Inside Out). Set in the 1990s, the film will involve the Kree/Skrull war (a classic Marvel Comics storyline) and reintroduce Samuel L. Jackson as a younger Nick Fury—with both eyes still intact.
Marvel tapped frequent collaborators Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck to co-direct the film. They’re best known for directing Ryan Gosling to an Academy Award nomination in the 2006 film Half Nelson.
Filming began in January 2018, preceded by Brie Larson visiting an Air Force base to research the role. Early photos from the set show Larson wearing a surprising costume. Rather than the red, yellow and blue uniform we expected, it’s a teal-colored jumpsuit inspired by the alien Mar-Vell, the original Captain Marvel.
Untitled Avengers movie, May 3, 2019
Previously titled Avengers: Infinity War, Part 2, this is a direct sequel to Avengers: Infinity War. The title won’t be revealed until after Infinity War comes out.
In October 2017, Kevin Feige confirmed this would be the end of an era for the MCU. There will be a major transition between Phase 3 (the current period of the franchise) and Phase 4, which will introduce fresh characters and stories. He described the first three phases as “an unprecedented, 22-movie, continuous shared fictional narrative,” with Avengers 4 as the finale.
With Robert Downey Jr. in his 50s and several Avengers reaching the end of their multi-film contracts, some central characters are likely to step down after Avengers 4. Anthony Mackie or Sebastian Stan may pick up Cap’s shield, with Captain Marvel, Spider-Man and Black Panther in the mix as Marvel’s new headline characters.
Untitled Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel, July 5, 2019.
Tom Holland’s Spider-Man will appear in Avengers: Infinity War (and possibly the new Venom spinoff), and is likely to have a role in Avengers 4 as well. The sequel to Spider-Man Homecoming will be the first movie in Phase 4, taking place during Peter Parker’s junior year of high school.
Director Jon Watts is expected to return, with Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers (two of Homecoming‘s many, many writers) as frontrunners to write the screenplay. Rather than just tying into the MCU, this movie will be part of Sony’s new Spider-Man universe, whose other films include Venom (out in October 2018) and the upcoming Black Cat and Silver Sable movie.
Marvel also has dates blocked out for movies releases on May 1, 2020, Aug. 7, 2020, and Nov. 6, 2020. One of those spots is likely to go to Guardians of the Galaxy 3, but Marvel may have a reason it’s withholding info on the other two. Marvel chief Kevin Feige told the Toronto Star in late 2016 that divulging the focus of those movies could be a spoiler for the upcoming Avengers titles.
Editor’s note: This article is regularly updated for relevance.
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