Despite production on films around the world temporarily halting due to the coronavirus pandemic, the internet started fluttering about earlier this week with word that both Black Panther 2 and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 could start filming within the year. According to listings on one production-tracking website, Guardians 3 is set to start rolling cameras next February while Black Panther 2 would follow shortly thereafter.
Except for one problem — the movies likely won't start production by then, for a variety of reasons. Even before productions were forced back, Guardians 3 was far from production due to James Gunn's prior commitments with The Suicide Squad for Warner Brothers. Not only does the threequel not have a release date from Marvel Studios, but Gunn himself has confirmed time and time again he will finish all work on The Suicide Squad prior to starting production on Guardians 3.
With production not picking back up in earnest until later this summer at the earliest, that means Gunn likely still has a week or two of scheduled reshoots in the hopper for Squad before he returns to the editing room. Plus, Gunn said earlier this year that the February 2021 start date was false — even prior to stuff hitting the fan in March.
Whoever was telling you we were starting to film then was incorrect. I have a whole movie to finish here and I won’t be done by then. But hi!!— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) February 29, 2020
The production start for Black Panther 2, on the other hand, does make a decent bit of sense. The Ryan Coogler-led film currently has a release date of May 6, 2022 and a March 2021 start would give the production plenty of time for principal photography, post-production, and scheduled reshoots. But again, that's assuming the sequel keeps its current release date.
In the span of the past month, Marvel Studios has shifted its slate around twice, and should cameras be offline until August or September, it's entirely possible the slate goes through at least one more round of changes — if not, more. Should things be moved around too drastically, one would think that Black Panther 2 date will be impacted sooner or later.
Both Guardians of the Galaxy flicks and Black Panther are now streaming on Disney+.