Marvel unveils Phase IV roster for 2020-21; Black Widow, The Eternals, Thor 4 India release dates announced
In 2020, Marvel Studios has two releases — Black Widow and The Eternals. The studio has three films lined up for 2021, including Thor 4 and Doctor Strange 2
After the monumental success of the Avengers Saga, Marvel is about to kick off the fourth phase of its highly anticipated Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The studio has now revealed its 2020-21 roster revealing the Indian release of the films.
In 2020, the studio has two releases — Scarlett Johansson-starrer Black Widow and The Eternals — which have been helmed by women directors.
Release date: 30 April
Director: Cate Shortland
Cast: Scarlett Johansson, Florence Pugh, David Harbour and Rachel Weisz
Plot: Kickstarting the fourth phase of the MCU, Black Widow will see Johansson reprise her role as the red-haired ruthless assassin, first introduced in Iron Man in 2010. While details on the plot remain scarce, some of the footage that has been released online hint that the film will capture Black Widow aka Natasha Romanoff’s life before she was an Avenger.
Trivia: There are rumours Black Widow will be set 15 years after the fall of the Soviet Union, with Romanoff having now made the US her home. This would place the events somewhere in mid-2000s.
Watch the teaser trailer here
Release date: 6 Nov 2020
Director: Chloe Zhao
Cast: Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Kit Harington, Salma Hayek, Gemma Chan and Kumail Nanjiani
Plot: Dubbed as MCU's next spectacle property after Avengers Saga, The Eternals is based on the 1976 comic book series created by Jack Kirby. The project will feature the super-powered and near-immortal beings known as Eternals and a more monstrous offshoot known as the Deviants that were created by cosmic beings known as Celestials.
Trivia: Marvel Studios has been making efforts to incorporate more diversity in its films after the success of Black Panther, which featured a virtually all-black cast, and its first woman-fronted superhero movie Captain Marvel. Now, actor Brian Tyree Henry's Phastos in The Eternals will be the first LGBTQ character of MCU.
Release date: 12 Feb 2021
Director: Destin Daniel Cretton
Cast: Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, alongside Tony Leung and Awkwafina
Plot: The film centres on Shang-Chi, a half-Chinese, half-American superhero created by writer Steve Englehart and pencilled in by Jim Starlin in 1973. Often referred to as the "Master of Kung Fu", Shang-Chi is well-acquainted with numerous unarmed and weaponry-based wushu styles, including the use of the gun, nunchaku and Jian. He was trained to be martial artist assassin by his father, the infamous pulp villain Fu Manchu. Later, he joined the Avengers and gained the power of making multiple duplicates of himself.
Trivia: Shang-Chi is the first film from the Marvel Cinematic Universe to feature an Asian superhero in the lead role
Release Date: 7 May 2021
Director: The project currently doesn't have a director after filmmaker Scott Derrickson stepped down from the film citing "creative differences." Derrickson had helmed the first instalment of the Doctor Strange franchise, released in 2016.
Cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Oslen and Benedict Wong
Plot: Not much is known about the film, except for that Benedict Cumberbatch will return as the Sorcerer Supreme.
Trivia: Marvel president Kevin Feige had once said Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness will not be a horror film but will certainly have some scary and edge-of-the-seat sequences. He added the movie will draw inspiration from some of the classics of the 1980s, such as Steven Spielberg's Raiders of the Lost Ark and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom among others.
Release Date: 5 Nov 2021
Director: Taika Waititi
Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tessa Thompson and Taika Waititi
Plot: There's not much information on the public domain about the fourth Thor film. However, Waititi had revealed that Academy Award winner Natalia Portman, who played Jane Foster in the franchise, would take up the Mjolnir as the first female Thor.
Trivia: Waititi had revealed he was inspired by the comic source material The Mighty Thor which introduces female Thor.
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