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Marvel’s New Phase 4 Slate: Every MCU Movie Release Date (2021-2023)


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The schedule for MCU Phase 4 has been completely revamped due to the COVID-19 pandemic - here are dates currently in place. Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe ended with Spider-Man: Far From Home serving as an epilogue to Avengers: Endgame, which concluded the Infinity Saga and bid farewell to MCU mainstays Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) and Captain America (Chris Evans). Though it was the end of an era, Phase 3 is far from the end of the franchise. Kevin Feige proudly laid out his next string of Marvel releases at San Diego Comic-Con 2019, unveiling a host of exciting movies and Disney+ TV shows. All seemed to be going as planned, with Marvel revving up for its new era.

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Marvel Studios' original Phase 4 schedule would've started with the highly anticipated Black Widow in May 2020, but as COVID-19 continued to spread and U.S. movie theaters remained shut, Scarlett Johansson's first solo outing was rescheduled out of necessity, triggering an initial cascade of changes that were later followed up with even more dramatic shifts, making 2020 the first year since 2009 that an MCU movie didn't see the light of day.

RELATED:Marvel's Phase 4 Will Make Or Break The MCU

Those delays soon extended to Disney+, but the Marvel machine eventually kicked back into life during the January of 2021 with the premiere of WandaVision, quickly followed by Falcon & The Winter Soldier. As some semblance of normality now looms, Phase 4 on the big screen is finally starting to take shape too. Here is the complete MCU schedule from 2021 to 2023.

Black Widow: July 9, 2021

The first movie to suffer at the hands of the coronavirus pandemic was Black Widow. This effort is now over a decade in the making, following Natasha Romanoff's debut in 2010's Iron Man 2. Since then, the assassin has been a supporting player in her fellow Avengers' solo flicks and the various MCU team-ups. Even though she was killed off in Endgame, Natasha is, at last, getting a spotlight of her own. The prequel is set between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War, and focuses on Natasha reuniting with her Russian family to take down the villainous Taskmaster. She'll be joined along the way by Florence Pugh's Yelena, David Harbour's Red Guardian, and Rachel Weisz's Melina.

Despite its heavy marketing and over 10 years of waiting, Black Widow's release is now coming more than a whole year later than initially planned. Originally set to hit theaters on May 1, 2020, the new date is July 9, 2021.

Shang-Chi And The Legend Of The Ten Rings: September 3, 2021

Focusing on an entirely fresh character to the MCU franchise, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings marks the highly anticipated introduction of the titular warrior, Shang-Chi. With Simu Liu at the forefront, the martial-arts flavored film has the distinction of ushering in the MCU's first Asian lead, while the title reference to "Ten Rings" sets up Tony Leung as the proper Mandarin, whose duplicitous role in Iron Man 3 divided fans. Awkwafina will play Katy, Shang-Chi's friend who has no idea of his fighting prowess, and Death Dealer's appearance was confirmed by trailer footage.

RELATED: MCU Theory: Why The Eternals Weren't In Infinity War Or Endgame

Because of changes to the Phase 4 release schedule, Shang-Chi has leapfrogged Eternals and is now the second planned release. Initially hit with a revised July 9 date (which has subsequently been pinched by Natasha Romanoff) Shang-Chi will arrive in theaters on September 3, 2021.

Eternals: November 5, 2021

The next film on the Phase 4 docket is another entirely fresh MCU property. Set over a span of thousands of years, Eternals follows a band of immortals who have long stood on the sidelines during the universe's biggest conflicts. The cast features new MCU characters played by a star-studded lineup including Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Salma Hayek, and Angelina Jolie.

The first Eternals footage emerged as part of an MCU sizzle reel to a positive reception, but without explicit plot details, Marvel die-hards will continue to speculate as to the film's story. Initially planned for a November 6, 2020 opening, Eternals has been bumped back an entire year to November 5, 2021. Strangely, these delays could potentially benefit Eternals, as Chloe Zhao picked up the Best Director gong at the 2021 Academy Awards for Nomadland, building hype for her first superhero venture.

Spider-Man: No Way Home: December 17, 2021

Since entering the MCU, Tom Holland's Spider-Man has become a hugely popular figure. His solo movies, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Spider-Man: Far From Home, established the MCU's unique take on Peter Parker after his first crossover appearance in Captain America: Civil War, and Spidey's involvement in the battle against Thanos has only cemented that reputation. The third installment in his solo franchise is expected to pick up on the cliffhanger ending of Far From Home, which saw Peter framed for Mysterio's (Jake Gyllenhaal) death and the London attack.

RELATED:Daredevil In Spider-Man 3? Why It Probably Won't Happen

Unfortunately for MCU fans, Sony has delayed Spider-Man: No Way Home several times, meaning the highly-anticipated premiere is now set for December 17, 2021, rounding out a busy 2021 for Marvel. With the rights to Spider-Man, Sony has attempted to cross over its own Spider-Man releases with the MCU's, teasing a Vulture connection in the Morbius trailer. Rumors suggest Spider-Man: No Way Home's multiverse themes will run even deeper, with characters transferring over from the Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield continuities.

Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness: March 25, 2022

Despite his prominent role in Avengers: Infinity War, Doctor Strange's second installment has been long overdue - five years in the making. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is set to be one of the MCU's most ambitious projects yet, with early rumors hinting this would be Marvel's first horror movie. Those suggestions have since been walked back, and original director, Scott Derrickson, has been replaced by Sam Raimi. Nevertheless, the multiverse format allows Benedict Cumberbatch's Stephen Strange to travel in new creative directions, and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness will draw important connections to Disney+'s WandaVision series. Previously scheduled for May 7, 2021, Stephen Strange's return was pushed back nearly a year, now hitting theaters on March 25, 2022.

Thor: Love And Thunder: May 6, 2022

Thor: Love and Thunder is among the most highly anticipated Phase 4 offerings on the way, and Taika Waititi will be occupying the director's chair once again following the huge success of Thor: Ragnarok. Natalie Portman is rejoining the MCU for the first time since Thor: The Dark World (and a brief appearance in Avengers: Endgame thanks to archive footage and some newly recorded dialogue) to play Mighty Thor; Tessa Thompson is confirmed to return as Valkyrie; and MCU newcomer Christian Bale will provide the villain, Gorr the God-Butcher, all of which serves to build even more anticipation for the fourth solo Thor movie.

Originally scheduled for November 5, 2021, Thor will return to the big screen on May 6, 2022, and fans can expect some fairly major cameos. Not only are the Guardians of the Galaxy heavily rumored, but Russell Crowe claims to be playing Zeus, and Melissa McCarthy appears as part of another inevitably hilarious stage play sequence.

RELATED:Doctor Strange 2 Vs. Thor 4: What Is The Most Important MCU Phase 4 Movie?

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever July 8, 2022

Black Panther was a critical, cultural, and financial smash hit, grossing over $1 billion worldwide and developing an extraordinarily passionate following. Black Panther 2 was first announced in 2019 and has since earned a subtitle in Wakanda Forever, with original director Ryan Coogler is set to return. Not much is known about Black Panther 2's plot, but considering the first film's cultural cache, the sequel remains one of the most highly anticipated releases on Marvel's slate.

Since that initial announcement, of course, Black Panther star and King T'Challa himself, Chadwick Boseman, tragically passed away. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is pressing ahead without him, and it remains to be seen how the franchise will continue without its titular hero. The sequel's title suggests Black Panther: Wakanda Forever will focus on themes of legacy and community.

The Marvels: November 11, 2022

Captain Marvel was a huge success in 2019, grossing over $1 billion worldwide, and as Marvel Studios announced the initial changes to the MCU Phase 4 slate, the studio also confirmed Captain Marvel 2 was in the works. In May 2021, the sequel's title was confirmed as The Marvels, which gives Brie Larson's Carol Danvers top billing alongside two MCU newcomers.

Teyonah Parris debuted as an older Monica Rambeau in WandaVision, and developed the powers of Spectrum, her alter-ego from the comics. Monica clearly has beef with Carol that The Marvels can resolve. Rounding out the titular trio, Imam Vellani will play Kamala Khan in Ms. Marvel on Disney+ before joining Rambeau and Danvers in theaters. Brie Larson's return as Carol Danvers was scheduled to land on July 8, 2022, but now sits at November 11 that same year.

RELATED:Coronavirus: Every Movie Delayed So Far

Ant-Man & The Wasp: Quantumania: February 17, 2023

If you thought Scott Lang would leave the Quantum Realm well alone after the events of Avengers: Endgame, you’d be very much mistaken. Ant-Man & The Wasp: Quantumania is now confirmed for an early 2023 release after the title was first unveiled in late 2020. Paul Rudd’s Lang and Evangeline Lilly’s Hope van Dyne will once again star, while Peyton Reed remains on directorial duties. The title would suggest Ant-Man’s third MCU solo adventure hops around the multiverse with reckless abandon, but the film will seemingly also introduce Kang the Conqueror, played by Jonathan Majors.

Infamous enough to potentially succeed Thanos as the MCU’s big bad, Kang is a genius armed with advanced future technology, which he uses to conquer various worlds across time, space, and multiple realities. Fortunately, Ant-Man and Wasp won’t be fighting him alone. Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer are back as Hank Pym and Janet van Dyne, and the role of Cassie has been curiously recast. Scott’s daughter will now be played by Kathryn Newton (Detective Pikachu, Supernatural, Blockers), suggesting a transformation into Stinger could be on the horizon.

Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3: May 5, 2023

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 might’ve landed a little earlier than May 2023, had Disney not played a brief game of directorial merry-go-round. James Gunn was fired from the threequel due to offensive tweets resurfacing from the director’s past, and by the time Mickey was ready to forgive, Gunn had already signed on to make The Suicide Squad for the "other side." Nevertheless, most fans are just happy Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is happening at all.

All the main gang will be returning, as well FOTGOTG (friends of the Guardians of the Galaxy) such as Nebula, Kraglin, and Mantis. Interestingly, Elizabeth Debicki will reprise her role as Ayesha, suggesting the MCU's Adam Warlock tease might finally be paid off. With Dave Bautista recently claiming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will likely be his final performance as Drax the Destroyer, 2023 could well be the last time the Guardians appear in their traditional guise, so enjoy them while you can.

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