With so much going on in Marvel movies nowadays and knowing what lies ahead, the question must be asked, "How will the Marvel movie landscape change after 2019?". Now before I give my take on that, lets look back at the MCU and movies up until now. MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR THOSE WHO HAVE NOT SEEN SOME OF THESE MOVIES!
Now, back in 2008, Marvel released one of its most popular movies to date, Iron Man. When Iron Man was first announced, it received a mixed reaction unlike any other movie during that time, but when it was released in theaters, people loved it and Marvel would never be the same again. Iron Man bought the perfect mix of light-heartedness and action that Superhero movies needed and it was also the jumpstart of the extremely popular, Marvel Cinematic Universe (or MCU). That same year, Marvel released its second MCU movie, The Incredible Hulk. Now, its safe to say that this movie was so much better than the one Ang Lee did years before. Now, granted it wasn't the best movie, but it was still pretty damn good. Edward Norton played a fantastic Bruce Banner in a movie that, to me atleast, was the ideal Hulk movie. The cast was great, the villain choice was great and the movie itself was Incredible (so much pun intended).
Lets fast forward 2 years to the only Marvel movie released in 2010, Iron Man 2. While it is a great movie, many people, including myself, thought it didn't live up to its predecessor, Iron Man. We were introduced to the very sexy, Black widow (Scarlett Johansson), we saw more of Nick Fury, we were introduced to War Machince and so much more.
Then 2011 came around and we were introduced to two of the biggest characters in the MCU, Captain America and Thor. Thor was a very well done movie in the case of setting up, not only the charcacter himself, but so many more key factors in the MCU, like Loki for example, but we'll get to him in a bit. Captain America was such a good movie. After seeing the performance of Chris Evans in that role, it was hard to picture anyone else portraying Mr. Red White and Blue. The movie also introduced us to Bucky Barnes, and like Loki, we will talk more about him later.
Now, lets get to the big one... You guessed it. I am talking about The Avengers! To this day, it is still called one of the best comic book movies of all time. It was the first time that The Avengers had appeared on the big screen together and it was absolutely MARVELous (see what I did there). Not only that, but it gave us one of the best super-villain performances ever. Tim Hiddleston's, Loki. Loki was, at the time, the best on screen comic book villain (next to Heath Ledger's, Joker of course). He had the looks, the style, the attitude and the perfect mix of all of them to be the perfect Loki. Though this was not the last time we saw Loki, this will always be his most memorable time on screen. The whole cast had great chemistry with each other which is only a small portion of what made it such a great and fun movie.
Now for phase 2. Phase 2 kicked off in 2013 and started with Iron Man 3. Now, even though it did not receive the love that the first Iron Man did (in fact, some say it is the worst of the 3 Iron Man movies), it was still a fantastic movies. In this movie, we see Tony Stark as a paranoid man after the events of the Avengers (you know, the whole throwing a nuke into space, then falling through a worm hole thing) and he is trying to live with himself and still have a relationship with Pepper Potts. In the end of it all, he basically says he is done with being Iron Man (we know how that works out) and drives off into the sunset. 2013 also gave us the sequel to the 2011 hit, Thor. Thor: The dark World came to theaters with fans immediately falling in love with the movie, with good reason. It easily upstaged the first Thor movie in almost all ways. Malekith was a fantastic villain, the story was very well done, we saw more of Loki, and the action was just plain awesome all throughout.
On to 2014 we go! This is the year where Marvel movies shined, in my eyes. First up is my personal favorite Marvel movie to date, Captain America: The Winter Soldier. This movie was just plain all around AWESOME! From the start, I knew this movie would be one of the best Marvel has released. In this, we saw Captain America really start catching up and getting used to the modern world, (which is a big change from the time of WW2) after he was turned into a capsicle in 1945. This movie also gave us my personal favorite villain portrayal, and a flat out bad ass Winter Soldier! Who is the Winter Soldier, you ask. Do you remember that guy, Bucky I mentioned earlier, ya it's him. Supposedly dead during active duty with the good Captain himself, Bucky was found by Hydra (the main enemy of SHIELD) and given a robotic arm and had his memory wiped. Hydra basically turned him into the ultimate foe for Captain America. We were also introduced Sam Wilson, a.k.a The Falcon. Another excellent performance in this movie. To me, this movie is the starting point for the eventual Marvel Civil War. Now on to one of the most popular Marvel movies and another personal favorite of mine, Guardians Of The Galaxy. Marvel took a BIG chance with this movie. Who are the Guardians? Well, lets do some roll call- We have Starlord, Drax the Destroyer, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon (yes he is really a raccoon) and the friendliest tree you will ever meet, Groot. When this movie came out, it grabbed the hearts of fans everywhere with its great story, cast, character build, effects, soundtrack (which has just gone platinum BTW) ETC. Idk about you guys, but I cant wait for the sequel.
NOW FOR THE FUTURE! This year brings us not one, but two MCU movies. Ant-Man (with Paul Rudd) and Avengers: Age Of Ultron. Now, i'm still skethcy on Ant-Man and while it looks good, I am still not 100% on it. Now, Age Of Ultron is a different story. I can't be the only Marvel fan that needed a change of pants after the teaser was shown at Comic Con 2013 and Ultron was announced. I was ecstatic to hear that The Avengers would be going up against their biggest foe on the big screen. What to expect- Destruction, death, action, sadness, one of the best villain portrayals, and all around AWESOMENESS! This movie will cap off pahse 2 of the MCU, while Ant-Man kicks off phase 3.
2016 and beyond- By now, so much will have happened in Marvel, with so much more to come. For 2016, we have Captain America: Civil War (yes like the Civil War comic) and the highly anticipated Doctor Strange movie (starring Benedict Cumberbatch). 2017 brings us Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther. 2018 brings us Avengers: Infinity War part 1, Captain Marvel, and the Inhumans. 2019 brings us what should be an astonishing finale to phase 3, Avengers: Infinity War part 2! All I can say is who isn't excited to see Thanos with the Infinity Gauntlet and wiping put entire planets and our beloved Avengers... Plus, if Spider-Man is in it, I might shreek and cry like a happy little girl and I will be in my early 20's by that time.
So after all that is said and done, how will the landscape of Marvel change forever? Well, rumor is if Marvel gets the rights to Spider-Man movies back, he will be the front runner for Marvel movies after Infinity War, and play a similar role that RDJ's Iron Man did for phases 1-2. I am sure we will have the New Avengers (not sure who exactly will be on the team though), The Winter Soldier will become the new Captain America if/when Steve Rogers dies, Captain Marvel will be a huge player and all the other newly introduced heroes will have to try to take the torch from the originals. So much can and will happen between now and those movies and it will change the way we look at comic book movies forever. I am absolutely take off my clothes and run around the neighborhood naked excited for the future. That's all folks. Hopefully, I will do my DC version of this article very soon.