Marvel's Phase 4 will assemble new Avengers and address the status of the core team after disassembling Earth's mightiest heroes in the final phase of the Infinity Saga. At the end of Avengers: Endgame, the penultimate chapter of Phase 3, founding members Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) are dead after sacrificing themselves to save the universe from Thanos (Josh Brolin). Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) and an aged Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) are retired, the mantle and star-spangled shield of Captain America passed to Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie). And Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) and Thor (Chris Hemsworth), the remaining members of the original six, are positioned for new stories in Phase 4.
"I think you will see that question addressed and people struggling with that very question within the MCU right now," Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige told CinemaBlend when asked to reveal if the Avengers are active in Phase 4. "I think post-Endgame and Tony being off the board, and Steve Rogers being off the board, Sam Wilson is the new Cap, of course… what does it mean to be an Avenger? Is there a core team? Who's leading it? Who's financing it?"
"That is very much an undercurrent that, while not at the forefront of many of the current movies, is certainly a question that is lingering in the background," Feige added.
Once active Avengers like Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), War Machine (Don Cheadle), Ant-Man (Paul Rudd), and Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) either have appeared or will appear on the big and small screen side of Phase 4 launched with WandaVision. Up next is Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, followed by Spider-Man: No Way Home, and Eternals, where the question is asked: "Who do you think is going to lead the Avengers?"
Feige previously revealed that, like the first Avengers Initiative assembled by Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) that culminated in 2012's The Avengers, a new roster of remarkable people would take time to put together in a future Avengers 5.
"I think we want there to be a reasonable amount of time from the Endgame to start a new saga, which is already underway and already started," Feige told Collider. "And then you need time, as you did in Phase 1, to build that saga before you start bringing everyone together."
Renner's retired Clint Barton returns opposite Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) in Hawkeye, premiering November 24 on Disney+, while Hemsworth's Thor and Ruffalo's Bruce Banner return in Thor: Love and Thunder and Disney+ series She-Hulk, respectively.
Watch ComicBook's interview with Feige about Shang-Chi and Phase 4 in the video player above.