Waking up this Sunday morning my head is still throbbing with a slight headache from all of the exciting news last night from Marvel Studios. It was said there was going to be a panel depicting what’s next for Phase 4 of the MCU, I knew there was going to be some information about the upcoming Black Widow movie and Eternals film but…I was not expecting what would transpire next.
Today, I’m recapping the mind-blowing event last night. You may have been like me, refreshing the Twitter and following along with the live tweets and updates on the websites. If not, prepare for your mind to be blown! Enjoy.
The First Eleven Years
The panel began with a giant montage celebrating the first eleven years of the MCU. Avengers: Endgame spearheaded the end of the montage with Thanos saying, “I am inevitable” followed by Tony Stark’s already-iconic response, “And I am Iron Man.” A few more clips of Endgame were shown before the logo for the first three phases of the MCU was released, which you can see in the picture above. The Infinity Saga. Isn’t it beautiful?
After that, the real news commenced.
After Kevin Feige thanked the staff (Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Stephen Broussard, Trinh Tran, Nate Moore, Sarah Smith, Brad Winderbaum, Jonathan Schwartz, Eric Carroll, Wendy Jacobson, Brian Shapeck, Zoe N., and Grant Curtis) for helping bring these Marvel movies to life and announcing that Avengers: Endgame has FINALLY become the highest-grossing film of all time, dethroning Avatar which it rightfully deserves.
He then started the Eternals panel where he said, “They’ve been there amongst the MCU, we haven’t met them before” and then introduced the director of Eternals, Chloe Zhao, who had this to say about the film, “We really get to explore what it means to be human and humanity in our time on this planet.”
After the cast arrived on stage to share tidbits about the characters they would be playing. Here’s the cast.
First off, I’m loving the diversity. These are the characters they will be playing which, if you’re familiar with The Eternals, will probably make you excited. Richard Madden is Ikaris, Angelina Jolie is Thena, Salma Hayek is Ajak, Kumail Nanjiani is Kingo, Lia McHugh is Sprite, Lauren Ridloff is Makkari, Dong-seok Ma is Gilgamesh, and Brian Tyree Henry is Phastos.
This is what they had to say about their characters. Richard Madden: “The Eternals are arranged of immortal aliens. Sent here by the Celestials to protect mankind from the deviants. I play Icarus, who is the sexiest of them.”
Brian Tyree Henry: “I just want to bring a whole new flavor to Phastos.”
Salma Hayek: “It feels great [to portray a strong female hero in the MCU]. It takes a strong woman to do a movie like this,” she said of her director.
“I am proud to have a diverse family,” Hayek concluded.
Angelina Jolie: “I am gonna work ten times harder. We are all going to be working very, very hard. I am in training. Thank you very, very much.”
As they left the stage it was onto the next big surprise.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier
It’s been common knowledge that there will be a series focusing on Falcon and Bucky Barnes but it was revealed last night that this series will actually be coming quicker than first imagined. It’s set to arrive this fall on Disney+, which is SUPER exciting to hear. This is what Sebastian Stan and Anthony Mackie had to say about their character dynamic.
Stan: “What kind of man is [The Falcon]?We’ll find out. WE know he’s got thighs so lets see if there’s anything else.” Lol.
Mackie: “With the Winter Soldier, I’m ready to see what ticks him off. How much ticking can that tock do, before that tock go boom?”
But, it wasn’t over. Footage was revealed and here are the juicy details: The brainwashing from Civil War plays. Baron Zemo sits down. “That doesn’t work anymore, does it? I can’t imagine what you all must be thinking. Villain seizes control of the panel and you must be expecting some act of violence but that’s not what this is,” he said. “Gentleman, I’ll be seeing you very soon.” He puts on a purple mask.” Daniel Bruhl is back as Baron Zemo.
I practically lost it. I had already written that Daniel Bruhl would reprise his role as Zemo but I was hoping that we would finally get to see him more like his comic-book version. Well, my wishes came true.
Shang-Chi and the Master of the Ten Rings
Shang-Chi is the newest superhero to join the MCU and will be arriving in February of 2021. The film’s villain; The Mandarin. And I’m not talking about The “Mandarin” from Iron Man 3. This is the real Mandarin whose power lies within his ten rings which behave very much like the Infinity Stones. You see, each ring has a different power and will prove to be a grueling obstacle for our newest hero.
Simu Liu is Shang-Chi and Tony Leung will be playing The Mandarin.
Director Destin Cretton said, “It’s so exciting to see Kevin and this amazing team begin to create an MCU that reflects all the beautiful colors that I see in this room.”
Simu Liu found out he was cast as Shang-Chi on Tuesday. Lol.
While we won’t be getting the WandaVision series until Spring of 2021 it’s set to be one of the most creative ventures in the MCU. According to Kevin Feige it’s “unlike anything we’ve ever done before.”
Paul Bettany says of the show, “I have no idea,” Bettany says of how Vision is back. “We’re so excited to bring it to y’all so I hope ya love it because it’s gonna be surprising and weird.”
The series will take place after Endgame and will feature a grown-up version of Monica Rambeau who will be played by Teyonah Parris. That’s definitely exciting!
The series will take a “Strange” turn as it goes back in time to the 60s’ and reveals how Wanda will finally get her known comic-book title, Scarlet Witch.
Next up Kevin Feige turned to the highly-anticipated Loki series which is also set to arrive in Spring of 2021. It will follow Loki’s story directly after he disappeared in Avengers: Endgame and this is what Tom Hiddleston had to say about the series.
“He’s still that guy,” Hiddleston said of Loki from Avengers. “Just about the last thing that happened to him is he got Hulk-smashed…There’s a lot of psychological evolution yet to happen…I can’t tell you any of [the plans] but it is one of the most exciting creative opportunities I’ve ever come across. A new world. New challenges. And I cannot wait to get started.”
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
If you read my blog you may know that Doctor Strange is my favorite Marvel superhero. It was announced that the long-awaited Doctor Strange sequel will arrive in May of 2021 and Scott Derrickson, the director of Doctor Strange, announced, “We’re gonna make the first scary MCU film.”
Feige, however, assured that the film will be PG-13.
This is what Benedict Cumberbatch had to say about the film: “I’m really excited to be at the dawn of this project and I think it’s vital to maintain the humor we had in the first one but with this twist of horror that will really have people gripped.”
Scarlet Witch will pick up where WandaVision drops off and play a role in the sequel.
An animated Marvel series is coming to Disney+ highlighting the What-if’s of the MCU. The Watcher, voiced by Jeffrey Wright, will be the main character in the series and beyond that I’m not very sure about the series.
The Hawkeye series has been confirmed to debut Kate Bishop into the MCU who Hawkeye will mentor into becoming the next, and greater, version of Hawkeye. Feige reports that the series will also focus more on his time as Ronin.
Thor: Love and Thunder
The other day it was announced that there would be a fourth Thor movie and yesterday more was revealed about the film as Taika Waititi, Chris Hemsworth, and Tessa Thomspon appeared on the stage. Hemsworth hasn’t read the script but Tessa Thomspon had something to make clear as the new King of Asgard: “First thing she needs to do is find her new queen.” It was a blunt reminder that Valkyrie is, indeed, bisexual and this aspect of her story will finally be revealed in Thor: Love and Thunder. But wait a minute…that’s not all.
The fourth Thor film is set to follow Jason Aaron’s story, The Mighty Thor, which focused on a female Thor and guess who’s going to play her? Natalie Portman! Yes, you heard correctly. Natalie Portman is returning to the MCU to star as female Thor in Thor: Love and Thunder. Taika Waititi is going to absolutely kill it with this storyline.
It is set to arrive in November 0f 2021.
Black Widow is the next Marvel movie to look forward to meaning there was more to reveal about this film. Florence Pugh is indeed set to play Yelena Belova and is a “sister figure” to Scarlet Johannson’s Natasha Romanoff. The director of the film, Cate Shortland, promises to elaborate on Black Widow’s past and reveal how she picks up the pieces to become the character we know her as in the MCU.
Johannson says, “I don’t think I could’ve played this iteration of Natasha ten years ago, it would’ve been a very different film. I get to play Natasha as a fully realized woman in all of her many facets. I’m excited for fans to see the flawed side of her…and I’m looking to wipe out some of that red in my ledger.”
Harbour, who plays a character by the name of Alexi, remarks that he has complicated feelings about Captain America. “You’ll come to understand that later,” he comments.
Footage from the film was then revealed. Here are the details: Footage goes back to the Age of Ultron flashbacks. Cut over to scenes from Avengers. Civil War. She narrates and says she got this family because of it. She’s made mistakes. She betrayed Tony by stopping Black Panther. The Marvel Studios logo plays.
BUDAPEST. She goes in a spiral staircase, entering a room with a gun. “I know you know I’m out here,” she said. “Wanna talk like grown-ups?” She comes face to face with Pugh’s character and they aim at each other as Pugh backs into a kitchen. They end up in a. fight with their hands, destroying the kitchen. Black Widow tries to hold her down and gag her with a towel but ends up getting tossed over. Cabinets are destroyed. A knife is pulled out. The score is reminiscent of the Winter Soldier appearing in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. A magnificent fight follows in the living room as the women end up trying to choke one another out with a curtain. Natasha calls her “sis” and they have a drink. Cut to motorcycle chases. Gun fights. Running through streets. Jumping through windows. “I got red in my ledger. I’d like to wipe it out.” Taskmaster, complete with a logo on a shield and mask takes shots from her and blocks them. The two fight on a bridge at night after a logo plays — they move very similarly.
Um…woah. It sounds like this movie is going to be 100% off the chain.
But the panel was not finished. Oh, there were a few more surprises to be revealed. There were the expected confirmations for Black Panther 2, Captain Marvel 2, and Guardians 3. Then there was the official announcement that the Fantastic Four and the Mutants would be joining the MCU.
But…the drop-the-mic moment was when Mahershala Ali walked onto the stage and Kevin Feige announced that he would portray Blade. Um, omg!!! And the logo was revealed.
It’s safe to say that this was one of the greatest Marvel exhibitions at San Diego Comic-Con ever. Aveners: Endgame was obviously just a stepping stone to Marvel having the creative liberty to do whatever the heck they want and I am on board for the ride.
Next year we’ll only have two movies as the franchise kind of resets and then 2021 will be packed full with films and Disney+ series to satiate our growing appetites.
To say I’m excited is an understatement.
I thank you for reading and I hope you have a Marvel-ous day.
Quotes and footage description courtesy of comicbook.com.