All good things come to an end and, according to Kevin Feige, that includes the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know it. The Marvel studio head says the end of Phase Three will also bring the larger MCU narrative to a satisfying close.
In a recent interview with Uproxx, Feige explained that while there are plans to tell new stories after Avengers 4 in 2019 the focus right now is getting to that point, closing out a story that took 22 movies to tell.
"Well, all I'll say is the films we are working on now -- which take us through to the Avengers Untitled in May of '19 -- that's really all we are focusing on," Feige said. "And we are focusing on bringing, by that point, an unprecedented, 22-movie, continuous shared fictional narrative to a conclusion in a satisfying way."
If that sounds like the end of the MCU as we know it that's because it is. Feige said that there are ideas of where to go next, but that good stories have "a finite quality."
“And where we go beyond that?" he continued. "Of course, we will go places beyond that. And, of course, we have ideas of where we go beyond that. But, really, it is all good stories. And as the series finale of Star Trek: The Next Generation said, ‘All good things must come to an end.’ And part of what makes them special, there is a finite quality to the best of fictional stories through history. And we wanted to do that at the end of our first three phases and 22 movies. How we start anew and wherever we go beyond that is a story for another time. This is really about 10 years on, bringing something to a head in a satisfying and unexpected way.”
With what fans know about the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok setting up for Avengers: Infinity War it has certainly felt like Marvel was starting to pull things together to tie up the end of the story. It's a feeling that's been reinforced by the lack of large announcements like the one announcing Phase Three back in 2014, a lack Feige says is because of the planned conclusion.
"I think it is," he explained. "I also think that was a particular event to really announce and showcase Phase Three and I guess set up the expectation of doing something like that every few years. But the notion we are sitting here talking and we have, what, six films yet to be released? That’s more than almost any other single production entity in town has on the docket. That should be enough.”
Of course, for Marvel fans it's never enough. Fortunately, even after Phase Three ends there's still the untitled Spider-Man Homecoming sequel and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 currently in development for fans to look forward to.
Thor: Ragnarok, the 17th movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, opens in theaters November 3rd.