What Happens After Avengers: Endgame?
Avengers: Endgame marks the end of Marvel’s Phase 3. The Russo Brothers’ epic hits theaters on April 26 and will conclude a 22-film arc that has revolved, in ways big and small, around Infinity Stones and the supervillain Thanos. New characters, new villains, and new talent in front of and behind the camera will usher in Phase 4. Here’s a look at what we know’s coming—and what we think we know—after Endgame.
Far From Home will be the first film to follow Endgame. What we’ve seen thus far of Jon Watts’ Spidey sequel seems to suggest the events take place after whatever conclusion Endgame brings us. Unless, of course, it turns out that Peter Parker and the rest of the superheroes snapped into dust at the end of Avengers: Infinity War are all resurrected on a totally different timeline. Far From Home was always going to be an interesting problem for Marvel, considering the first trailers would bow before Endgame hit theaters and resolved Peter Parker’s fate. We’ll know how Parker is alive, and on what timeline he’s living, once Endgame hits theaters.
Director Cate Shortland‘s Black Widow standalone film is one of the more intriguing post-Endgame films on Marvel’s slate. Most reporting suggests that Black Widow will take us back on the MCU timeline, showing us Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson)’s career before the events of even 2008’s Iron Man. Johannson’s super spy has long been one of the most intriguing Avengers; what she lacks in the usual superhero abilities she makes up for with lethal skill. Her tortured past—both her brutal training and her career as an assassin—make her an especially potent character to focus an entire film on.
Black Widow is currently expected to premiere on May 1, 2020.
Black Panther 2
Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther was arguably the most consequential film of 2018. Coogler’s film was a critical and commercial smash, garnering both an Oscar-nomination for Best Picture and Oscar wins for costume designer Ruth E. Carter, production designer Hannah Beachler, and composer Ludwig Goransson. For Black Panther 2, the young director knows expectations are high. Also, Black Panther himself was one of the superheroes turned to dust at the end of Infinity War. Coogler will clear these hurdles, as he always does.
It’s unclear when Black Panther 2 will hit theaters. Coogler is going to wisely take his time and make sure his first sequel is as moving and momentous as Black Panther was.
We know even less about Doctor Strange 2 than we do about the previous films mentioned. It also requires the good doctor to have some kind of resurrection in Endgame, considering he was yet another superhero turned to dust in Infinity War. Director Scott Derrickson is returning to helm the sequel, which will likely drop in the spring of 2020. Doctor Strange’s fate in Endgame is an interesting one, considering it was his somber assessment of the battle with Thanos during Infinity War that gives the film its title. It’s also Strange who looked into the future and saw that the Avenger had about a 1 in 14 million chance of beating Thanos.
Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has said that The Eternals could span thousands of years. The Rider‘s Chloe Zhao was named as director this past September. In an interview with Collider, Feige said that the Eternals will arrive on screen as a group (think Guardians of the Galaxy), rather than have individual films lead up to a larger ensemble picture (think Avengers.)
“Everything after Endgame, and after Spider-Man: Far From Home, will be different and be unique, as we try to make every film. But seeing returning characters is certainly something we’re gonna do and want to do. But also introducing characters that the majority of the world has never heard of, much like Guardians, much like Avengers before we made Avengers. And there are lots of them. Eternals are one group, but we like the idea of introducing an ensemble, doing an ensemble movie from the start, as opposed to building up as we did with the first Avengers. More like Guardians, not tonally, but in terms of introducing a new group of people. You were asking about ’60s, and ’70s before. Jack Kirby did an immense, amazing epic with Eternals that spans tens of thousands of years, and that’s also something we haven’t really done, which is why that among many other things post-Endgame, we find appealing.”
The Eternals could arrive in the fall of 2020.
In the comics, Shang-Chi was raised by his father on an evil quest for world domination. Yet the young hero’s life changed when he met his father’s nemesis, Sir Denis Nayland Smith, and ultimately he becomes a superhero on the right side of the good/evil balance. He’s closer to Black Widow than Thor; he has no superpower, but he is a Kung Fu master. While Dave Callaham pens the script for Marvel, the search for a director is on. Shang-Chi will represent the first Marvel film to focus squarely on an Asian-American character.
Featured image: Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) in ‘Avengers: Endgame.’ Courtesy Marvel Studios/Walt Disney Studios.