Right now, we’re in the middle of Phase Three of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Next up from the studio is Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Captain Marvel, and two more Avengers movies. However, we still don’t really know the schedule for Phase Four.
So far, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is the only confirmed installment of Phase Four. We also have a Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel coming out two months after Avengers 4, but it’s not clear if it’s part of Phase Three or the beginning of Phase Four.
Kevin Feige previously suggested that Marvel is keeping its Phase Four titles under wraps, likely to avoid potential Avengers 4 spoilers. But in the meantime, we can still speculate and suggest what we’d like to see next in the MCU.
Below, we’ve compiled a list of ten Marvel movies we want to see in Phase Four and beyond.
Ant-Man was a surprise hit back in 2015, further cementing Marvel Studios’ success with adapting obscure superheroes for the big screen. Paul Rudd’s Scott Lang went on to return for Captain America: Civil War, while he will co-headline a sequel with Evangeline Lilly’s Hope van Dyne in next year’s Ant-Man and The Wasp. The character is also expected to return in at least one of Marvel’s next two Avengers films. So, assuming Ant-Man and The Wasp is a hit, it would be logical to make a third movie.
Ant-Man 3 would theoretically continue Lang’s story, as well as van Dyne’s. Ant-Man and The Wasp is introducing several key Ant-Man characters to the MCU, such as Janet van Dyne and Bill Foster, so continuing that exploration of the Ant-Man mythos is a given. My idea: bring Eric O’Grady in to the third movie. If this is the last movie on Rudd’s contract and he chooses not to renew it, they can use Ant-Man 3 to pass the mantle from Lang to O’Grady – similar to how Hank Pym passed it down to Lang in the first film.
Doctor Strange 2
Doctor Strange was yet another hit for Marvel last year, firmly establishing the existence of magic and sorcerers in the MCU. It’s actually surprising that Marvel hasn’t announced a sequel yet. Stephen Strange is in Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers 4, so assuming he makes it out of that conflict alive, then a second solo film for Phase Four is pretty much a given.
set up Baron Mordo as a villain, following his departure from Strange and the sorcerers. The mid-credits scene established Mordo’s determination to rid the world of sorcerers, which would inevitably pit him against Strange. Director Scott Derrickson also expressed interest in seeing Nightmare
in a sequel. Ultimately, there’s a lot of material from Doctor Strange’s mythos to explore on film, and it would be a shame if Marvel doesn’t take advantage of that.
After two movies that were moderately received, Hulk finally got his big break in the Avengers movies, while he will return in Thor: Ragnarok and the next two Avengers. With this success, it’d make sense for Marvel to do another solo movie at some point, right? However, Mark Ruffalo recently said that another solo Hulk movie will “never” happen, while Kevin Feige confirms that there are currently no plans. Universal still has the distribution rights for future Hulk films. Also, considering the underwhelming box office grosses of the last two films, Marvel may be hesitant anyways to risk another one.
But if those factors are resolved, then there is plenty of story potential for a new Hulk movie. It can feature villains such as Red Hulk or The Leader. It can also see the return of previously established characters like Betty Ross. But ultimately, Hulk is a popular character right now, so it would be a shame if a new solo movie is not made to cash in on that.
Black Panther 2
T’Challa made his big MCU debut in Captain America: Civil War last year, and he will headline his long-awaited solo film next year. Black Panther is already generating a lot of anticipation amongst fans, promising a fresh new story in the Marvel Universe. So, assuming that the movie is a big hit, then a sequel is a no-brainer.
The world of Wakanda is vast, and it would make sense to take multiple films to explore it. A sequel could also continue focus on the Dora Milaje
, while villains such as Achebe
and White Wolf could make their MCU debuts here. Basically, there’s a lot more they can explore in Black Panther’s world, and the character is a prime candidate to become one of the new faces of the MCU. So, bring on a second movie.
Namor the Sub-Mariner
If Marvel is seeking to launch a brand new franchise in Phase Four, then an obvious option would be Namor the Sub-Mariner. While Namor is a recognizable Marvel character, there have been setbacks in producing a film adaptation. The film rights had been at Universal for several years. However, Feige said a while back that Marvel has the rights, but there were older, complicated contracts that needed to be resolved. But again, if Marvel is able to resolve this, then Namor would be a welcome addition to the MCU.
A Namor the Sub-Mariner
movie would be fascinating. It would open up a new side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which has yet to explore life under the sea in depth. Also, if DC Films’ Aquaman
delivers, then that may have influence on what Marvel will eventually do with Namor. While we may not get this movie in Phase Four (unless those contracts are resolved soon), fingers crossed that Marvel is able to bring Namor to life some day.
Captain America 4
Captain America has been one of the cornerstone characters of the MCU to date. Chris Evans’ Steve Rogers will return in the next two Avengers movies. After that, Evans’ contract is up. While it’s always possible that it could be renewed, it’s also possible that we’ll be saying goodbye to Rogers in Avengers 4. If that’s the case, then what happens next?
While recasting is an option, Marvel would be better off putting another character behind the shield. Bucky Barnes took over the role of Captain America in the comics after Rogers was assassinated. Most recently, Sam Wilson/Falcon became the new Cap. Both Wilson and Barnes are key supporting players in the Captain America movies. Additionally, Sebastian Stan signed a whopping nine-picture deal to play Barnes. Maybe some of those movies could be used for a new Captain America trilogy?
Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff has been a key supporting player in multiple MCU films, from Iron Man 2 all the way through Avengers 4. However, fans have wanted to see Black Widow headline her own spin-off film. While Captain Marvel will be the studio’s first female-led movie, a Black Widow film is also a good idea.
Romanoff’s origin story has yet to be fully explored, even though we’ve seen glimpses of it here and there. A movie focused on this would work. Also, Johansson is a hot name right now – just see the success of Lucy in 2014. And, again, it is necessary for studios to pursue female-led comic book movies; Black Widow is one of the most obvious choices.
Thor has been another key player in the MCU, and his future post-Avengers 4
is also in doubt. However, back in 2013, Chris Hemsworth
expressed interest in renewing his contract. If he does, then a fourth Thor
installment in Phase Four is likely. Thor: Ragnarok
looks to be a fresh “rebirth” for the franchise, so it would make sense to expand that.
There are plenty of directions to take with Thor 4. Characters such as the Midgard Serpent, Enchantress, and Beta Ray Bill could appear. Maybe they could adapt Jason Aaron’s recent fan-favorite arc, “The God Butcher.” Or they could have Thor become King of Asgard. Or, in the event that Hemsworth doesn’t renew his contract and Marvel doesn’t recast, maybe they could bring in a female Thor like in the current comics. While the comic book version has Jane Foster wielding Mjiolnir, another idea would be to have Tessa Thompson’s Valkyrie take over.
The intergalactic police force known as Nova Corps were introduced in the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie. In the comics, arguably the most popular member of the group is Richard Rider. Rider has gone on to be one of Marvel’s most prominent cosmic heroes, and with the MCU expanding its cosmic world soon, it wouldn’t be at all surprising if Nova comes up. How about his own movie?
would bring the Corps completely into the spotlight, after their introduction in Guardians
. Exploring Rider’s powers, police activities and more would make for an engaging film. A Nova
movie could also introduce Sam Alexander
, the main Nova in the current comics.
Speaking of Marvel’s cosmic characters, we come to our last suggestion. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 introduced Sylvester Stallone’s Stakar Ogord, a high-ranking member of the Ravagers. Following Yondu’s death, Stakar reunited his old team, which is made up of Martinex, Charlie-27, Aleta Ogord, Mainframe, and Krugarr. Several of these characters are members of the original Guardians of the Galaxy team in the comics. One of Vol. 2‘s post-credits scenes saw the reformation of the team, and it would be cool to continue that story in a spin-off.
previously said that Stakar will likely appear again in the MCU, whether it’s Vol. 3
or something else. A Ravagers
movie would fully flesh out Stakar and his team, as well as the Ravagers gang as a whole. And c’mon, it’s Sylvester Stallone. If you have him play a character in a major comic book movie franchise, then it’s a no brainer to do as much with him as you can. Enter The Ravagers
Honorable Mentions: Captain Marvel 2, Hawkeye, Spider-Man 3, Howard the Duck, Winter Soldier
Which Marvel movies do you want to see in Phase Four and beyond?
Future Clemson University Graduate. Lover of all things Star Wars and DC.
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