Warner Bros./DC recently announced a list of random projects centred around the Justice League that should keep them busy for the next 100 years. Not to be outdone Marvel Studios have recently announced their Phase Three schedule covering films up to 2019. The films are:
- Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)
- Ant-Man (2015)
- Doctor Strange (2016)
- Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (2017)
- Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
- Black Panther (2017)
- Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 (2018)
- Captain Marvel (2018)
- Inhumans (2018)
- Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 (2019)
When I first read the announcement it promised the a movie with a female lead as fans have been demanding. I had to go back to see what I had missed, a Black Widow movie? It appears not. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige assures us we will be seeing a lot more of Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) “Her part in Avengers: Age Of Ultron is very, very big and further develops her character”. But she is not the leading lady in question, that honour goes to Captain Marvel (2018), aka Carol Danvers. I skipped past the 2018 list assuming Captain Marvel was a man. It turns out he was, now she isn’t. Showing my ignorance of the Avengers comic book movies I had to look her/him/them up.
It appears the first Captain Marvel, created by Stan Lee and Gene Colan in 1967, was Captain Mar-Vell of the Kree Imperial Militia. Suggestions are that the Captain Marvel we are going to see will be the seventh incarnation of the character, Carol Danvers. First introduced as a US Air Force Security Chief, she gained super powers when her genes were fused with those of the Kree. She then became Ms. Marvel. More recently she took the title Captain Marvel. It is unlikely that Marvel will undertake such a convoluted origin story in the last twelve months of phase three suggesting she will join as an established character. Or more likely there will be a simplified origin that will take place in other films before she gets her own movie. Given the alien part of the story she could easily fit into Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (2017) or Thor: Ragnarok (2017). As an affiliate of US Air Force and S.H.I.E.L.D. she could fit into an Avengers story but it is unlikely that she will be in Age of Ultron unless they have kept it very quiet but may be Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 (2018).
The weight on the film is immense, not only does it need to succeed to prove Marvel can handle a female character, but it must also outdo Wonder Woman. The DC movie has a twelve month head start and a more recognisable character. This conversely could work in Marvels favour, it gives a slight release of pressure, in the same way that Guardians of the Galaxy had low expectations. Casting and direction are essential to make it work, there is no word on either yet, this doesn’t stop fan speculation or expectation. I don’t know anything about the character so would struggle to suggest who should play her, however as always I would like to see someone interesting and talented. The three names that spring to mind are: Emily Blunt, Jessica Chastain and Brit Marling. We will find out 2018.