The Marvel Cinematic Universe could be headed for a big change, with Disney CEO Bob Iger saying the studio could aim for fewer sequels in the future. The latest theatrical release in the MCU, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, marked the 31st film in the franchise. However, the third Ant-Man film has received its fair share of criticism, with some of the MCU’s worst critics scores of all time. Before that, the fourth MCU film directed by Chris Hemsworth – Thor: Love and Thunder – also fell short of expectations, making Iger’s words more meaningful.
Boardwalk Times shared Iger’s comments during the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media and Telecom Conference, on a possible new trend for Phase 5, Phase 6 and beyond of the MCU, consisting of fewer sequels.
Disneyland News Today also provided more clarity on Iger’s plan to look into the need to develop sequels to existing heroes, rather than focusing on introducing new characters. According to the Disney CEO, the recently criticized high production of Marvel content may not be the studio’s real problem, but rather the need to develop “third and fourth” films for existing characters. Check out the full quote below:
“What we have to look at in Marvel, isn’t necessarily the volume of Marvel storytelling, but how many times we go back to the well on certain characters. (…) Sequels generally work well for us. Do you need a third and a quarter, for example? Or is it time to turn to other characters?
Can the MCU survive without its original heroes?
Phase 4 of the MCU is arguably the most controversial the franchise has ever been, with fans and critics alike speaking out about Marvel’s uneven output as of late. 2019’s Avengers: Endgame presented a seismic shift in the franchise, and Iger’s words raise the possibility that Secret Wars will be the last Avengers movie, if Marvel is really looking forward to cutting back on sequels. However, with the MCU planting seeds on possible new team lineups across the New Avengers, Young Avengers, and West Coast Avengers, it seems Iger is more focused on avoiding a few problems that have plagued Marvel lately.
The MCU’s turbulent Phase 4 had to contend with the fact that three main Avengers retired from the MCU in Avengers: Endgame. Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow was lost, but the fact that the MCU lost the two faces of the franchise – Chris Evans’ Captain America and Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man – is certainly a big contributor to what went wrong. with the MCU Phase 4. This has in part led to the poor reception Marvel has experienced since the latest Avengers epic hit theaters.
Both the third Captain America and Iron Man films managed to cross the $1 billion mark, something Marvel needs right now, after a string of poor box office performances now featuring Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania intended to end up as the lowest-earning film in the Hero Trilogy. The MCU is still racking up numbers that almost any other cinematic universe would be happy to have, which means the MCU can survive without its original heroes, but it’s possible Marvel will never reach the height of Infinity again. Saga, especially with James Gunn’s emerging DC Universe competition.
Source: Boardwalk Times/Twitter, Disneyland News Today
Key Release Dates
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Release Date : 2023-05-05
- The Marvels / Captain Marvel 2 Release Date : 2023-11-10
- Captain America: New World Order Release Date: 2024-05-03
- Marvel’s Thunderbolts release date: 2024-07-26
- Llama 2024 Release Date: 2024-09-06
- Deadpool 3 Release Date: 2024-11-08
- Marvel’s Fantastic Four Release Date : 2025-02-14
- Avengers: The Kang Dynasty Release Date: 2025-05-02
- Avengers: Secret Wars Release Date: 2026-05-01