Though no official word from Disney or Marvel Studios has been announced about any changes to their release strategy, CEO Bob Chapek caused a bit of confusion online during the company's quarterly earnings call today. Touting their upcoming slate of films, Chapek noted that "Our Marvel slate includes feature films in fiscal 2022," highlighting new movies Eternals, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The word "fiscal" seemingly got lost in the shuffle though with many fans taking to social media to ponder if the upcoming movie from Oscar winner Chloé Zhao had just been delayed. For the record, it hasn't.
As it has in previous years, Disney's "fiscal year" is not the same as the calendar year, with the company's fiscal 2022 beginning in October of 2021 and concluding in September 2022. That in mind, Marvel's Eternals' previously confirmed release date of November 5 is well within the fiscal 2022 window for The Walt Disney Company. Other titles confirmed to be in that same window by Chapek were also the upcoming fifth Indiana Jones movie and Lightyear, a new spinoff of the Toy Story franchise from Pixar, plus Steven Spielberg's West Side Story and the much-delayed The King's Man.
"It's a widely appealing slate with something for everybody," Chapek added.
One title that Chapek didn't specifically mention, that could no doubt cause more confusion due to omission, is Thor: Love and Thunder, previously set for a May 6, 2022 release date. Just because Chapek didn't mention it however does not mean the film has been delayed, especially since it didn't shout out ever other movie on their release calendar for the next fiscal year.
For the time being there's no reason to panic just yet. If new release dates are made for these films it will likely be down the road, but for the time being there hasn't been any confirmation from the studio about that.
Marvel's Eternals cast includes Angelina Jolie as Thena, Richard Madden as Ikaris, Kumail Nanjiani as Kingo, Lauren Ridloff as Makkari, Brian Tyree Henry as Phastos, Salma Hayek as Ajak, Lia McHugh as Sprite, Don Lee as Gilgamesh, Gemma Chan as Sersi, and Barry Keoghan as Druig. Kit Harington also stars as Dane Whitman, a.k.a. the Marvel Comics hero Black Knight. The official description from the studio reads:
"Marvel Studios' Eternals features an exciting new team of Super Heroes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, ancient aliens who have been living on Earth in secret for thousands of years. Following the events of Avengers: Endgame, an unexpected tragedy forces them out of the shadows to reunite against mankind's most ancient enemy, the Deviants."