In an alternate timeline, we’ve already seen Marvel’s new superhero movie. Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings and are preparing for the launch of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Insanity this spring. We all got drunk WandaVision Y The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and probably even Loki. And we are waiting for the new Spiderman movie this summer.

Unfortunately, we do not live in that timeline.

The COVID-19 pandemic shook the world in 2020, causing massive disruption to the film industry and its best plans. Marvel Studios is known for its rigid release of movies that adhere to a strict timeline of events from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, with one movie impacting the next and so on. And in 2020, Marvel was preparing to further complicate the timeline with the first television shows produced by Marvel Studios on Disney + that would be intimately tied to the events of the Marvel movies.

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As a result of the COVID shutdown, Marvel had to rearrange the release order for its Phase 4 movies and TV shows, significantly altering the release that was originally planned. With vaccines on the rise and Disney announcing a day and date premiere of Black widow In theaters and on Disney + (with Premier Access) in July, it seems things are finally falling into place for Marvel to get back on track. But comparing the current release schedule for Marvel movies and shows to the planned one is an interesting thought experiment, and shows how much work had to be done to make sure every piece of the puzzle still fit together.

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At closing time, Black widow it was completely finished and Eternal had just finished filming, but Spider man 3 Y Doctor Strange 2 production had not yet started and Shang-chi, WandaVision, Y Falcon and the Winter Soldier they were all still in the middle of filming. So even when production resumed, there was still a lot of work to be done.

With things returning to a new normal and Black widow Getting a firm release date that will almost certainly stick, let’s look back at the original MCU Phase 4 plan and compare it to the release that is currently moving forward.

The original MCU phase 4 timeline plan

Black Widow Scarlett Johansson Florence Pugh

Image via Marvel Studios

This is how Marvel originally planned to release its initial roster of Phase 4 movies and TV shows.

Black widow – In theaters May 1, 2020

He alone Black widow film, which takes place before the events of Avengers Endgame, is Scarlett Johanssonlong-awaited spin-off.

Eternal – In theaters: November 6, 2020

A new Marvel franchise begins with Eternal, directed by Nomadland filmmaker Chloe zhao and with an all-star cast that includes Angelina Jolie, Kumail Nanjiani, Gemma Chan, Richard Madden, Y Kit harington. The story centers on a group of immortal beings who come down to Earth.

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier – On Disney + from August 2020

The first Marvel Disney + series was supposed to be The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, which is a thriller set in the wake of Avengers Endgame that joins Anthony Mackie Y Sebastian Stan as they deal with post-traumatic stress disorder and a mysterious new threat.

WandaVision – On Disney + from “Early 2021”

Originally WandaVision was to be Marvel Studios’ second television series, following the release of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier Y Eternal and that leads directly to a Strange doctor continuation.

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Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings – In theaters February 12, 2021.

Another new Marvel franchise starring Simu liu and directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, following the titular martial artist who conflicts with the Ten Rings and the villain known as The Mandarin.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Insanity – In theaters May 7, 2021.

Based on the suspenseful ending of WandaVision, we would have only had to wait a couple of months to see Elizabeth olsen opposite co-star Benedict Cumberbatch in the sequel Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Insanity.

Loki – On Disney + from May 2021

The independent Loki series – what’s next Tom Hiddlestoncharacter after he collected the Tesseract during Marvel Avengers and traveling to unknown places, would have helped start the summer with Doctor Strange 2.

Spider-Man: No Way Home – In theaters July 16, 2021.

The third Spiderman starring in the movie Tom holland, which brings into play the idea of ​​the multiverse with the appearances of Jamie foxx Y Alfred Molina of other Spiderman franchises, it was supposed to be a summer movie.

Thor: love and thunder – In theaters: November 5, 2021

Writer / director Taika waitititriumphant return to Thor The franchise was originally slated to hit theaters in November 2021, culminating a banner year for Marvel Studios.

The new MCU phase 4 release dates


Image via Marvel Studios

WandaVision – On Disney + from January 15, 2021

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier – On Disney + from March 19, 2021

Loki – On Disney + from June 11, 2021

Black widow – In theaters and on Disney + with Premier Access on July 9, 2021

Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings – In theaters September 3, 2021.

Eternal – In theaters November 5, 2021.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Insanity – In theaters March 25, 2022.

Thor: love and thunder – In theaters May 6, 2022

Black panther 2 – In theaters July 8, 2022.

Captain Marvel 2 – In theaters November 11, 2022.

Was the MCU story affected?

Image via Marvel Studios

As you can see, the biggest differences between the original MCU Phase 4 plan and the current release are Black widow was supposed to be the next big thing after Avengers Endgame Y Spider-Man: Far From Home, and that would lead directly to the MCU’s first television series. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Instead, we’ll get the MCU’s first three TV shows before we watch. Black widowand because the closure of production affected Falcon and the Winter Soldier more severely, WandaVision he was forced to premiere first.

No doubt Marvel planned to use Falcon and the Winter Soldier to facilitate MCU fans in their new Disney + storytelling pathway. That’s a more traditional and grounded MCU show that deals directly with the consequences of pain from Endgame. While WandaVision it’s a great mythology swing, still about pain, but in a unique and aesthetically ambitious way that couldn’t be replicated on the big screen.

RELATED: Here’s How ‘WandaVision’ Leads To ‘Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness’

It turned out good. Reviews of WandaVision they were spectacular, and fans are now tuning in each week to The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. It will be interesting to see what is the much longer wait between the end of WandaVision Y Doctor Strange 2 ago (there is now a full year gap between that show and the movie, which continues Wanda’s adventure), and how the heavy mythology of a show like Loki change the MCU even before moving on to the next movie.

As Black widow go back in time and take place before Avengers EndgameMarvel certainly had more flexibility here. In fact, president of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige He said that if a total disruption in the timeline were to occur, knowing what the study plans are for the next three to five years, 2020 was the best year for it to occur without having major ramifications for the story told throughout. large (and small screen.

But Marvel and Disney are finally ready to kick-start this story, and hopefully it will continue on the big screen in July with the release of Black widow – more than two years after the last Marvel movie was released in theaters. We hope the wait is worth it.

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