Following on the heels of the recent announcement that Robert Downey, Jr. will return for The Avengers: Age of Ultron as well as P, Marvel has begun announcing release dates for the rest of their ‘Phase Three’ lineup even if they haven’t announced the films themselves. In addition to the already announced Ant-Man (directed by Edgar Wright), Phase Three will almost surely consist of Thor 3, Captain America 3 and Avengers 3. Other good bets would Nova, Doctor Strange and Luke Cage.
Here’s What You Need To Know
Phase Two has already begun with Iron Man 3. That will be followed this year by Thor: The Dark World. Next year will see Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers 2. Ant-Man has already been announced to kick off Phase Three.
Why Is This A Good Idea?
Thor 3 would likely see all of the cast of the current Thor films returning and the villain most likely to be Surtur, the fire demon, as he is the most prominent of Thor’s enemies to not yet appear in the films. Captain America 3 will probably feature the return of Black Widow and The Falcon (both confirmed to appear in Winter Soldier) as well as seeing Cap face off against one of his classic villains, perhaps Baron Zemo or The Machinesmith.
The least surprising of the new entries would be Doctor Strange, long having been rumored to be in development. Rumor has been floating around for years of Marvel courting Pierce Brosnan to play the surgeon turned sorcerer. Supporting personnel would likely include Strange’s mentor The Ancient One, his associate Wong and the most likely villain, Baron Karl Mordo (how about Brian Cox for that part?)
Nova would most likely spin out of this year’s Guardians of the Galaxy. With the Nova Corps. geared to feature heavily in the film, it seems only natural that Nova join the Marvel film series. The plot would likely tie into whatever menaces are introduced in the Guardians movie but could feature either classic Nova Richard Ryder or new Nova Sam Alexander.
A Luke Cage film seems likely as the character has skyrocketed to prominence in the comics in the past several years and is rumored to appear in the new Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. series. Angel veteran J. August Richards appears in the show’s trailer and is rumored to play the bulletproof hero.
Phase Three will most likely wrap up with Avengers 3. Rumor has it that Jeremy Renner will not return as archer Hawkeye for Avengers: Age of Ultron (and thus not 3 either) but the rest of the team should return and the team will see new faces, definitely including Ant-Man (from Wright’s film), perhaps The Wasp and The Vision and almost surely Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch (who will be introduced in Avengers 2). Ant-Man could lead into the introduction of Ultron as the nemesis for this film. With Ultron featuring so heavily in Marvel’s current comic line, it comes as no surprise that the maniacal robot would succeed as Thanos as the film villain.
But Will This Actually Happen?
Yes. Phase Three is happening and has already been announced. What films will be included beyond Ant-Man are unknown. Phase Three begins in 2015 with Ant-Man. Avengers: Age of Ultron will likely see a post credit sequence that leads into Ant-Man.