We know that Marvel Cinematic universe will greatly expand to include around 67 comic-book characters who are likely to appear in Avengers Infinity War movies. The Russo Brothers had earlier clarified that there will be new titles for the final two movies in phase 4 as they are two independent movies without any major inter-linkages. The first one is from Team Avengers perspective while the second one is entirely based on Thanos comic-book storyline.
There were many titles to choose from a host of comic-books related to the Infinity war storyline – Thanos Quest, Annihilation Conquest, Infinity Gauntlet, Infinity War, Infinity Crusade etc. Finally, the studio decided to name the third movie as “Avengers Infinity War” and the fourth movie is still untitled. This clearly indicates that the two parts have completely separate storylines. The classic comic-book story is unlikely to change where Thanos first collects all the mind gems, then he assembles all the gems to create an all-powerful Infinity gauntlet, cause a global catastrophe and then in Avengers 4, Team Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy will unite and fight mad titan to save the world.
In the words of Kevin Feige, Avengers Infinity War is the culmination of everything that has happened in the MCU till now. He said:
“I think you look at the comics as a guide, although some titles get rebooted or re-launched, the narrative exist on a never-ending continuum”.
What this really means is if the studio decides to cast someone else in place of an established character, everything that has happened in the past will continue to exist. He is indicating that Marvel may bring Kate Bishop into the cinematic universe as a new Hawkeye in place of Clint Barton (as he may have family issues) or Sam Wilson (The Falcon)/ Bucky Barnes (Winter Soldier) dons the mantle of Captain America, as there are 11 different avatars of the character but it wouldn’t erase the Steve Roger’s past. In this case, Captain Marvel will assume a leadership role in Team Avengers.
He further added that Marvel’s Phase 4 will mark a new beginning and a very distinct chapter comprising o the finality of all the previous phases. He was recently asked about the possible title of Avengers 4, he said that it’s a huge spoiler and will be revealed at the opportune time. Many fans interpreted this as Avengers Infinity War officially being the penultimate movie in Phase 3 but actually it will end it while Avengers 4 will set up the whole new story for Phase 4. The first film of Phase 4 will be GOTG Vol. 3.
James Gunn recently confirmed this fan theory, referred to Kevin Feige’s comments and said this:
“No. Read Kevin Feige’s quotes & not the static around them. It’s the end of one long story & the beginning of another. And one of the films that will kickstart the new story will be #GotGVol3.”
Kevin Feige though took a U-turn of sorts in the latest series of interviews. On being asked why there isn’t much news about Marvel phase 4, he said that he wants to first focus on winding down of the overall narrative of phase 3 before he begins to think further. Here’s what he said:
“I think it is overdue. I also think that was a particular event to really announce and showcase Phase Three and I guess set up the expectation of doing something like that every few years… But the notion we are sitting here talking and we have, what, six films yet to be released? That’s more than almost any other single production entity in town has on the docket. That should be enough.”
“Well, all I’ll say is the films we are working on now — which take us through to the Avengers Untitled in May of ’19 — that’s really all we are focusing on. And we are focusing on bringing, by that point, an unprecedented, 22-movie, continuous shared fictional narrative to a conclusion in a satisfying way.”
He finally said:
“Marvel Studios has a new direction filled with “good stories” beyond Phase 3. How we start anew and wherever we go beyond that is a story for another time. This is really about 10 years on, bringing something to a head in a satisfying and unexpected way.”
The phase 4 would probably include The Inhumans, Black Panther sequel, Captain Marvel sequel, Dr. Strange sequel, Guardians of the galaxy 3 etc. One thing which is absolutely clear looking at the roster of superhero movies in the pipeline is that we will see a huge influx of mysticism and magic in Marvel movies in phase 4. The big villains could be Dormamu, Mephisto who are powerful cosmic villains who can fill the void post Thanos extinction. Well, at this point, we can only speculate.
Avengers: Infinity War to arrive in theaters on May 4, 2018, Avengers 4 is likely to come an year later on May 3, 2019. CHEERS!