Since it first debuted in May of 2008 the Marvel Cinematic Universe has done nothing but grow. With that comes a lot of forward thinking by Chief Creative Officer Kevin Feige and his team at Marvel Studios as they figure out how to grow the universe with each film while also connecting it to what has come before. Marvel is also no stranger to planting flags far in the future for its movies, opting to simply say an “Untitled Marvel Movie” will arrive on that date which seems forever away every time. Despite laying claim to a release date so far in advance, it would be easy to ponder if the studio even knows what movies they want to debut on those release dates, let alone what will happen in the films.
Speaking with Vanity Fair, Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely offered fresh insight into the making of the two movies, and life at Marvel Studios in general, revealing that they absolutely plan far in advance at the studio. How far exactly? The pair revealed that the two major story beats that conclude Avengers: Endgame, the death of Tony Stark and Captain America's dance with Peggy Carter, were already written almost four years before the movie was released.
“It's such a leap faith, right?" McFeely said. “We’d only had one movie as a foursome under our belt (when hired for Infinity War and Endgame). We got the job, thought about it all throughout the shooting of Civil War. And then the last four months of 2015, we cracked both those [Avengers] movies. So Tony’s death and Cap’s dance were on three-by-five cards in September of 2015.”
Just to give a sense of how far ahead of the release of the film this planning was, in September of 2015 Marvel Studios had yet to release Captain America: Civil War, Doctor Strange, or Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, let alone even a trailer for any of those films. This also means a variety of characters hadn't even made their big screen debut. Furthermore, filmmaker Taika Waititi hadn't even been hired to direct Thor: Ragnarok nor had Ryan Coogler been hired to direct Black Panther. Brie Larson hadn't even been cast as Captain Marvel at that point either. On another front, the Marvel Netflix shows by that point had only revealed the first season of Daredevil and had yet to even cast the role of Iron Fist. By the time Avengers: Endgame debuted in theaters in April 2019, all six of the shows in that corner had been cancelled.
Given this new piece of information, and a recent batch of untitled release dates from Marvel Studios, it really makes you think, what do they already know right now that will happen at the end of a movie set to be released on November 3, 2023. Sound off with your guesses in the comments below!