It’s been well over a year, but the Marvel Cinematic Universe is finally preparing to return next week. Phase 4 of the MCU will officially begin with the release of WandaVision on Disney +, with the live-action series debut on January 15th. That wasn’t always the plan, but 2020 forced Disney and Marvel Studios to change things up a bit. Anyway, fans eagerly awaiting more MCU content will have a lot in the pipeline over the next few years that should more than make up for the lost time.
When we last left the heroes of the MCU, it was in the Aftermath of Avengers: EndgameThe film was the culmination of more than a decade of interconnected stories. It became the highest grossing film of all time and lived up to the high expectations placed on it. Spider-Man: Far from homeThe final MCU phase 3 film followed. In a way, it played out like an epilogue for Endgame. Again the film was a great success and brought plays for the future.
That future was originally supposed to come in the form of Black widow in May 2020. The long-awaited solo film for Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff was supposed to usher in phase 4. However, since the theaters were closed for much of the year and the box office was life sustaining, Black widow, along with the rest of Marvel Studios’ upcoming plan, has been delayed several times. The titles were postponed and things were uncertain for a while. Fortunately the dust has finally settled and the time will come in a few days.
One of the biggest changes in the MCU Phase 4 will be the addition of live action TV shows. Representatives of S.H.I.E.L.D. and other shows have existed before, but they always felt far removed from the movies. No longer. WandaVision will start a trend that these shows are strongly connected to the rest of the MCU, with Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany returning as Scarlet Witch and Vision, respectively. Other live action shows announced for Phase 4 include: The falcon and the winter soldier, Loki, Hawk Eye, Mrs. Marvel and the animated What happened if?. Other Disney + shows like She-hulk, Moon knight, Arms wars and Secret invasion have been announced, but some of these could become part of Phase 5.
On the film side, phase 4 will consist of Eternal, Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings and the currently unnamed Spider-Man 3 in 2021. Doctor Strange in the multiverse of madness, Thor: love and thunder, Black panther 2, Captain Marvel 2 and a mysterious MCU title will follow in 2022 that could be that blade New start with Mahershala Ali. Other projects like Fantastic Four, Ant Man and the Wasp: Quantumania and a X-Men The restart is part of phase 5. Everything starts when WandaVision arrives on January 15th on the Disney + streaming service.