Marvel Entertainment: 2017 in Review – Part 1 [Film]

To say the least, 2017 has been yet another huge year for Marvel Entertainment, whether it’s in the Marvel Cinematic Universe or elsewhere. Several movies hit theaters, with many more still in development. The television shows keep going strong. And we’ve had news on the animation and video game compartments.

In this first installment of our annual reflection, we look back at the biggest news, announcements, and more surrounding Marvel’s movies.

For Marvel’s biggest moments at San Diego Comic-Con 2017, click HERE.

This year, Marvel Studios released three movies. The team reunites in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Peter Parker balances high school life and being a superhero in Spider-Man: Homecoming, and the God of Thunder faces his greatest challenge yet in Thor: Ragnarok. All three movies were critical and commercial successes, with each film grossing more than $800 million worldwide.

Guardians‘s success led to James Gunn returning to write and direct a third movie, which will set up plenty of new cosmic stories in the MCU. Homecoming is currently the biggest superhero movie of the year, and the second biggest in the Spider-Man franchise. This bodes well for future installments, including the 2019 sequel, which will see the return of the first film’s director and writers. Ragnarok is also the highest grosser in its respective franchise, successfully breathing new life into the God of Thunder.

Meanwhile, Marvel began marketing Black Panther, releasing two awesome trailers. We learned more about this movie from Entertainment Weekly‘s coverage during Comic-Con. We also learned a lot more about Avengers: Infinity War, the culmination of everything in the MCU so far. We got a first look at Thanos’ children, while the film is expected to be Marvel’s longest. And we got that incredible trailer. Then, Ant-Man and The Wasp filled out its cast and underwent production.

Also, it’s full speed ahead on Captain Marvel, starring Brie Larson. Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck are directing this one, which got a new writer over the summer. The cast is currently being filled out, with Samuel L. Jackson, Jude Law, and Ben Mendelsohn joining. Meanwhile, the movie will serve as the MCU debut of the Skrulls, while the story takes place in the 1990s.

Beyond that, Marvel is keeping its post-2019 plans under wraps. There’s rumors of a Power Pack movie, but that’s about it.

Moving on to the X-Men side of things… This year saw the release of Logan, which marks Hugh Jackman’s final performance as Wolverine. The film was a huge critical and commercial success, with many praising it as one of the best in the genre. Following this success, a spinoff starring Laura/X-23 entered development. Despite Logan definitively ending Wolverine’s story, recasting the role for future films isn’t out of the question.

2018 will see the release of another different spinoff: New Mutants, a full-blown horror movie set in the X-Men world. The film’s cast includes Charlie Heaton, Alice Braga, and more. The teaser trailer effectively showed off the horror tone, promising a unique comic book movie. Director Josh Boones hopes to create a trilogy with this property.

Next, Deadpool 2 underwent production. The sequel will debut Josh Brolin as Cable, Zazie Beetz as Domino, and Jack Kesy as a villain, among others. We also got a teaser trailer and synopsis. The sequel will set the stage for another spinoff, X-Force, which will be written and directed by Drew Goddard. As for other spinoffs… Channing Tatum’s Gambit is finally hitting theaters in 2019, thanks to a new director and female lead. James Franco is making a Multiple Man movie, which may have a hard R rating. Fox also reserved a bunch of release dates for its Marvel properties.

The mainline X-Men movies will continue next year with Dark Phoenix, which is Simon Kinberg’s directorial debut. The principal cast from Apocalypse is back (including Magneto, Beast and Mystique), with Jessica Chastain playing the villain. Entertainment Weekly recently got the scoop on this movie.

Fox’s other Marvel property, Fantastic Four, has shown a few signs of life this year. Legion creator Noah Hawley is making a Doctor Doom movie, while a spinoff starring Franklin and Valeria Richards was rumored.

BUT… in the biggest news of the year, Disney announced that it was acquiring 20th Century Fox, among other assets. This means that the X-Men and Fantastic Four worlds can join the MCU. How this will affect Fox’s current plans for the franchises remains to be seen.

Next, we have yet another planned universe in the works. While Sony is collaborating with Marvel on new Spider-Man movies, the studio is also doing its own series of films, based on various characters from the Spider-Man universe. Each film has its own style and is open to diverse budgets and ratings. There are also conflicting reports on whether or not these movies will have any connections to the MCU.

First up is Venom, which hits theaters next fall. Tom Hardy plays Eddie Brock in the Ruben Fleischer-directed movie, which is intended to be a horror film and may or may not be rated R. The film will also star Riz Ahmed, Michelle Williams, Jenny Slate, and Woody Harrelson. Production is going on now.

Next will be Silver and Black, which brings together Silver Sable and Black Cat. Gina Prince-Bythewood is directing and writing, and she sounds very passionate about the buddy movie. Several other Spider-Man villains are rumored for this film, which is scheduled hit theaters on February 8th, 2019. Casting news is expected to come soon.

As for other movies… a Morbius the Living Vampire movie is in the works, with two screenwriters working on it. Meanwhile, Nightwatch is rumored, while films starring Kraven the Hunter and Mysterio are reportedly being considered.

Going outside of the traditional Marvel mold… This year saw the release of a second Kingsman movie, based on the comic published by Icon Comics, an imprint of Marvel comics. Subtitled The Golden Circle, the film was another box office success. But with its $395.4 million worldwide gross, it doesn’t quite match the gross of the first movie.

Plus…. they’re apparently releasing a Men in Black spinoff in 2019?

So, yeah, that’s all of the major Marvel movie news, announcements, etc. to come from 2017. It was a huge year, and frankly, next year should be even bigger.

Check back tomorrow for Part 2 of our annual reflection, where we look at Marvel TV’s developments of the year.

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of WOBAM! Entertainment.