MCU, delays in sight? Bob Iger’s return causes the new Avengers to slip

Bob Iger is CEO of Disney again: his return, apparently, will not be painless for the grown-ups franchise of the company, which will suffer heavy delays. The Marvel Cinematic Universe will be the hardest hit IP. Iger seems to have a very specific plan in mind, which could make some of the most critical Marvel fans happy for the turn undertaken from Phase 4 onwards. His motto will be “more quality, less quantity”, at least for the MCU: since the continuity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe does not allow the elimination of projects already under construction, the new Disney direction will limit itself to delaying the films and TV series over time, in the hope of giving their producers more time to create better works. It is difficult to say whether Iger’s strategy will lead to concrete results: what is certain, for now, is that the future Marvel Cinematic Universe releases in theaters and on Disney+ are destined to change profoundly with respect to the timeline revealed by Marvel at D23.

The Avengers slip to 2026 and 2027

Let’s start with the “big shots”: the known scooper GreatPhase explained that Avengers: The Kang Dynasty will be released in 2026and no longer in 2025. To refresh your memory, the first Marvel ensemble film of the Multiverse saga was supposed to arrive in cinemas on May 2, 2025, while Avengers: Secret Wars was scheduled for May 1, 2026.

The latter underwent an initial postponement last October, together with Deadpool 3, Fantastic 4 and Blade, perhaps due to the latter’s production problems: given the postponement of The Kang Dynasty, it now seems decidedly probable that Secret Wars will also be delayed by a yearwith a release probably scheduled for May 2027, extending Phase 6 by twelve months. The year of “breathing” that the Iger management will give to Marvel Studios will make it possible to review the entire calendar of future releases, postponing the entire program by a few months release post-2023 in theaters and on Disney+, so you guarantee more curated TV series than those of 2022 and to leave room for a series of new releases at the cinema, some of which are completely unexpected.

Let’s start from the latter, because the names circulating are decidedly interesting. In all likelihood, the upcoming film schedule until 2025 will remain essentially unchanged: the three films of 2023 (Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania, Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3 and The Marvels), as well as the three of 2024 (Thunderbolts, Captain America: New World Order and Blade) should therefore be all safe.

On the other hand, the Most of the changes will affect Phase 5With the’2025 release of Fantastic 4 with Shang Chi 2sequel to last year’s film directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, and Armor Wars, which therefore now seems certain will be transformed into a film for the big screen (Iron Man 4?). Also in 2025, but this time separately from other Marvel releases, Spider-Man 4, co-produced by Sony, will also arrive and that he should receive one release towards the end of the year. In 2026, however, the aforementioned will arrive Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and two other very noisy films in recent months. The first will be the third film about the Sorcerer Supreme by Benedict Cumberbatch Doctor Strange 3which it should set the stage for the two Avengers films who will conclude Phase 6, exploring the Multiverse and the Incursions again (as the Doctor Strange 2 post-credits scene). The other film arriving in 2026 will instead be Eternals 2which however will not be directed by Chloe Zhao.

At this point, only Avengers: Secret Wars will arrive in 2027thus concluding Phase 6 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The leak is likely, also because it finds a place for all the already announced or widely rumored films of the MCU arriving in the coming years, without exceeding the “ceiling” of three films a year. Actually, according to others insiders, Marvel is pushing for a postponement of Avatar 4, scheduled for the Christmas season of 2026, in order to launch Secret Wars at that time of the year, and then start again in 2027 with Phase 7 and the new MCU Saga. Essentially two films should remain excluded from this division, which we already know are in the making but which appear to be at an embryonic stage, i.e. World War Hulk and the X-Men movie.

World War Hulk is in the worksit is now almost certain: however, some leakers, including GreatPhasethey explained that at the moment there doesn’t seem to be anything concrete about it, so production won’t start until Phase 7. The same goes for the standalone movie about Scarlet Witch: the scooperAgain, they report that Wanda Maximoff will return to the MCU, but not in a solo project. The X-Men, on the other hand, should enjoy a much larger space from Phase 7 onwards, to the point that speculations about a post-2027 “Mutant Saga” have become increasingly insistent in recent weeks.

The Revolution on Disney+

On the small screen, the changes compared to the program released in recent months will be mainly two. The first will be the more weight given to “Special Presentations” on Disney+especially after the success of Werewolf by Night and the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special.

Disney’s strategy for mid-length features on its streaming platform is to go through one Halloween special a year, with the next ones expected to be about Man-Thing and Ghost Rider. Also there choral production on the Midnight Sonswhich should feature the participation of Blade, Moon Knight, Werewolf By Night and Ghost Rider among others, it will be a film for Disney+ and not a TV series. Not only the “supernatural” part of the MCU will go through the Special Presentations, however: on the contrary, too Nova will receive a medium-length film on Disney+which will always be released before Avengers: Secret Wars. In this case, it is difficult to say whether production will arrive in 2024, 2025 or 2026. At the same time, even The Silver Surfer will have a dedicated origin story arriving directly in streaming, which will lay the foundations for the film on Fantastic 4: the film will arrive in streaming towards the end of 2024, since the release of the feature film about the most famous family of American comics is set for February 14, 2025.

The second side of the Disney-Marvel policy change on the small screen will be that of postponements of less convincing TV series for Disney+which will give their producers more time to work out the details, carry out the reshoot and generally improve the quality of the footage. The most important postponement is certainly that of the second season of What If…? in early 2024, exactly one year after the release so far scheduled, witnessing the reduction of Marvel Studios’ animated commitments. At the same time, Echo has also been moved to 2024despite the release was originally scheduled for the winter of 2023.

So long as Echo will be a prequel to Daredevil Born Againhowever, it is unlikely that the serial delays more than a few months, given that this would also mean a postponement of the series on the Red Devil. Finally, among the postponements of weight we also have Agatha: Coven of Chaos, delayed until late 2024 or even at the beginning of 2025. In this case, however, it is possible that the change of date depends more on matters of continuity of the macro-history of the MCU than from the need to take more time for the show, for which indeed the works should already be at an advanced stage. Moving on to the good news, however, the leaks confirm that Secret Invasion will be released in the spring, as widely confirmed by the trailers of the last few months, and that the second season of Loki remains scheduled for 2023, this time in the summer. The slots autumn of this year, however, will be occupied by Ironheart.

An increasingly less smoky Phase 6

Taking into account postponements and new productions, all slots until early 2025 are filled both on Disney + and in the cinema: it is unlikely that, in addition to the series mentioned so far, Marvel will be able to publish something else in the next two years and a little more. From 2025 onwards, however, the unknowns start, especially on the small screen.

Next to the second season of I Am Grootindeed, the slate of the releases between 2025 and 2027 seems to be still being defined. Fortunately, the rumors have explained that the second seasons of Ms. Marvel and Moon Knight both will arrive before the end of Phase 6, thus occupying two slots for the two-year period 2025-2026. Similarly, we can expect that too Wonder Man arrives in 2026 on the streaming platform of the House of Mickey Mouse. In the same period it should also debut the series on White Vision, Vision Questwhich according to the latest rumors should tie directly to both Wonder Man and Armor Wars, given that the latter film will lead to the founding of the West Coast Avengers (if you want to know more, we advise you to read our latest special on Vision Quest). Furthermore, Vision Quest should open up to the Young Avengersintroducing Viv (or Viviane Vision), daughter of Vision and possible co-founder of the supergroup together with Kate Bishop, Cassie Lang and Ms. Marvel.

Assuming that the Young Avengers receive a dedicated production before the end of Phase 6 (which is absolutely not obvious, indeed), also in this case it should be a TV series, probably arriving close to Secret Wars, at the end of 2026. Also between 2026 and 2027, the last two should then debut Multiverse Saga series.

The first will be Okoye, the final chapter of the Vibranium saga started with Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and should continue with Thunderbolts and Captain America: New World Order. The series on Okoye could actually have the Midnight Angels as protagonists, which in addition to the character of Danai Gurira will also include Ayo and Aneka. In the serialmoreover, we should see gods cameos by Shuri, Nakia, M’Baku and W’Kabiwhile Valentina Allegra De La Fontaine and Everett Ross should have a rather important role, configuring the production as a political thriller “with elements taken from Game of Thrones”, according to the leakers. The latest product to be released on Disney+, however, will be the TV series about Strange Academy, which will have Wong as the protagonist: it will be a sort of “Harry Potter in Marvel sauce”, with decidedly less serious and “dark” tones than those of the other productions related to the supernatural world in the MCU, but which at the same time will lay the foundations for the entry of new, powerful sorcerers in the Marvel world.

Finally, an interesting batch of rumors about Daredevil: Born Again reveals a number of details about Matt Murdoch’s next adventure. Specifically, currently the series rating is TV-MAtherefore suitable only for a mature audience: it is difficult to say whether Disney will actually modify the editing or the definitive shot to reduce it to a TV-14, especially considering that Deadpool 3 will arrive in September 2024the MCU’s first “adult” film.

In any case, it seems that the main villains will be the ninja of the Hand, a stable presence in the Red Devil comics but which on Disney+ should receive a major overhaul both in terms of origins and aesthetics. The series, however, will boast several minor super-villains, against which Daredevil will have to contend for a couple of episodes each. One of them will be the serial killer and artist Museborn in 2016 in the pages of the comics dedicated to Matt Murdoch and died on the same books in 2018.

MCU, delays in sight? Bob Iger’s return causes the new Avengers to slip