From the release of Guardians of the Galaxy in August until the release of Avengers: Age of Ultron in May 2015, there will be nine months that pass between superhero/comic book based pictures. Starting next year and especially in 2016 and beyond, that’s going to change.
It’s almost hard to believe, but there are currently 30 – yes, 30 – superhero pics scheduled to debut between 2015 and 2020. Some – though likely not many at all – could fall to the wayside. And certainly more could be added to the calendar over the next six years.
Today, Marvel Studios announced “Phase 3” of their slate of films scheduled to be released until 2019 – culminating with the third and fourth Avengers pictures. Besides the Disney/Marvel releases, Warner Bros. and Fox have their own ambitious slates.
The 21st century has been absolutely dominated by the comic book adaptation in movie world. It started in 2000 with X-Men and has continued with the Dark Knight franchise, The Avengers, Guardians, two Superman reboots, two Spider-Man franchises, and various stand-alone features and their sequels and reboots focused on Captain America, Thor, Hulk, Daredevil, Hellboy, and others. And it’s only accelerating.
This is going to be tough to keep all these Iron Men, Guardians, Caped Crusaders, and newbies like Ant-Man, Wonder Woman, and Doctor Strange straight, so this movie blogger is providing you a handy guide for all of them coming out over the next few years – in order of currently scheduled release.
Here we go:
Avengers: Age of Ultron
Release Date: May 1, 2015
Joss Whedon returns to direct as Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Thor, Hawkeye, and Black Widow all return in the sequel to the #3 highest grossing film of all time. This will almost surely set a new record for all-time opening weekend, therefore defeating its predecessor.
Release Date: July 17, 2015
Paul Rudd takes on the role of the title character with Michael Douglas and Evangeline Lilly costarring. Expect Ant-Man to find his way into later Disney/Marvel projects, possibly including later Avengers sequels.
The Fantastic Four
Released Date: August 7, 2015
After two successful but critically panned Fantastic Four pics earlier this century, director Josh Trank (Chronicle) takes over the reins of a budding new franchise for 20th Century Fox. The cast includes Miles Teller as Mr. Fantastic, Kate Mara as the Invisible Woman, Michael B. Jordan as the Human Torch, and Jamie Bell as The Thing.
Release Date: February 12, 2016
A spinoff of the X-Men series, Ryan Reynolds is likely to play the character (he played him in the poorly received original 2009 Wolverine stand-alone flick).
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice
Released Date: March 25, 2016
Man of Steel director Zack Snyder returns with Henry Cavill’s Superman battling Ben Affleck’s Batman. Gal Gadot will make her debut as Wonder Woman before a later stand-alone pic and Jesse Eisenberg joins the mix as Lex Luthor.
Captain America: Civil War
Release Date: May 6, 2016
The third America flick will feature a prominent role for Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man with The Winter Soldier‘s Anthony and Joe Russo returning to direct.
Release Date: May 27, 2016
Days of Future Past director Bryan Singer is back (he also directed the first two installments of the original trilogy) as is the cast from 2011’s First Class, including James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, and Jennifer Lawrence.
Release Date: August 5, 2016
This team of DC villains will be incorporated in the Warner Bros. movie universe that will eventually lead to the Justice League pics. Jesse Eisenberg is rumored to appear in this as well in his Lex Luthor role. David Ayer, director of Fury, is behind the camera.
Release Date: November 4, 2016
Sinister director Scott Derickson helms the adaptation of the Marvel comic with Benedict Cumberbatch just having signed to play the title character after negotiations with Joaquin Phoenix stalled.
Release Date: November 11, 2016
A spin-off of the current Spider-Man franchise, this will focus on supervillains in the Spidey universe, reportedly including Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, and Rhino. Cabin in the Woods director Drew Goddard is on board.
Release Date: 2017
A stand-alone pic for the Spidey villain, it’s uncertain at this point whether Sony Pictures ends up going forward with this one.
Untitled Wolverine Picture
Release Date: March 3, 2017
The third stand-alone Wolverine flick will have Hugh Jackman clawing his way on screen and James Mangold, who directed 2013’s The Wolverine, returning.
Guardians of the Galaxy 2
Release Date: May 5, 2017
Star Lord and company are back with James Gunn back in the director’s chair. The original from this summer grossed an astonishing $752 million worldwide (at press time).
Release Date: June 23, 2017
It’s about time a woman headlined one of these things! Gal Gadot will star after appearing as the title character in Batman v. Superman. No director attached at press time.
The Fantastic Four 2
Release Date: July 14, 2017
Fox is confident as they’ve scheduled this to follow-up summer 2015’s release.
Release Date: July 28, 2017
The third entry in the franchise, Chris Hemsworth will reprise his role in between Avengers filming duties. No director attached yet.
Release Date: November 3, 2017
Disney/Marvel gives their first headlining feature to an African-American superhero. 42 and Get On Up star Chadwick Boseman was cast as the Panther today. The character will reportedly first appear in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War.
Justice League Part One
Release Date: November 17, 2017
Essentially Warner Bros. version of Avengers, expect to see Cavill’s Superman, Affleck’s Batman, Gadot’s Wonder Woman, and likely Green Lantern, The Flash, Aquaman, and Cyborg in the mix. Zack Snyder will direct.
The Amazing Spider-Man 3
Release Date: 2018
No specific release date yet, other than sometime in 2018 and you have to wonder. Each Spidey flick has grossed less than its predecessor and this summer’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2 was a commercial and critical letdown. It’s not known for sure yet, but Andrew Garfield is likely to return as the title character.
Release Date: March 23, 2018
After a probable debut in Justice League, The Flash gets his own stand-alone pic with Ezra Miller in the title role.
Avengers: Infinity War, Part 1
Release Date: May 4, 2018
This is where the Marvel universe is likely to go bananas – with rumors of your typical Avengers (Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Hulk) possibly mixing it up with Ant-Man, Doctor Strange, and the Guardians of the Galaxy, among others. This is gonna be huge.
Release Date: July 6, 2018
Details are scarce, but this will be Disney/Marvel Studios first stand-alone featuring a title character who is a female. Expect an A list actress to join at some point.
Untitled Fox Marvel Movie
Release Date: July 13, 2018
Once again – details are very scarce. However, there are rumors that this could be Fox’s “Avengers” type pic, incorporating the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, and Deadpool.
Release Date: July 27, 2018
After an expected debut in Justice League, “Games of Thrones” star Jason Momoa will portray the title character.
Release Date: November 2, 2018
Marvel/Disney will attempt and almost assuredly succeed with this development of a new Guardians/Avengers type franchise. Director/actor announcements will come later.
Release Date: April 5, 2019
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will play the title character in this DC Comic adaptation.
Avengers: Infinity Wars, Part 2
Release Date: May 3, 2019
The continuation of the previous summer’s Marvel blowout – don’t be surprised if this marks the final appearances of Downey Jr’s Iron Man, Chris Evans’s Captain America, and Chris Hemsworth’s Thor. This will be the end of Phase 3 for Disney/Marvel and we’ll have to wait and see what Phase 4 brings.
Justice League, Part 2
Release Date: June 13, 2019
The Batman/Superman/Green Lantern/Flash/Wonder Woman/Aquaman saga rolls on…
Release Date: April 3, 2020
Originating from DC, Warner Bros. will adapt this character with Ray Fisher in the title role. It’s rumored he’ll begin his appearances beginning with 2016’s Batman v. Superman and later Justice League flicks.
Release Date: June 19, 2020
There was a badly received version starring Ryan Reynolds in 2011. Expect Warner Bros. to ignore that flick while reintroducing the character in Justice League prior to this stand-alone.
And there you have it – that’s a whole lotta superhero action scheduled to come your way over the rest of this decade.