Over the past week Marvel released their updated slate for the next five years, and whilst there were no real surprises at a sequel to Ant-Man and a new Spider-Man film, the internet has gone crazy at the news of 3 unnamed films in 2020. Pretty much every news source have crafted long winded articles speculating on what three films they will be, ranging from a third Guardians of the Galaxy film, to a third part for Infinity War, and even (oh I wish) a Howard the Duck film. That’s not forgetting the debunked Fantastic Four theory – although some people still believe a deal was made with Fox as similar debunking was done regarding Spider-Man. But, with so much page space taken up this week with articles about the three new films, what do we actually know?
Well, simply put, we know nothing. Zip. Nada. Zilch. All we know is Marvel are releasing 3 films in 2020. How the heck is that considered news? They are releasing 2 or 3 films each year over the next 4 years anyway, so it wasn’t a stretch to imagine 3 films in 2020. Heck, why didn’t they go the whole hog and outline plans for 3 unnamed films in 2021, another 3 in 2022, and then go crazy with 4 in 2023 (after all, they can drop some later if they wish…nobody will miss a film they don’t even know the name of)?
I love Marvel films as much as any other member of Stan’s Merry Marvel Marching Society, but this rush to release ‘plans’ for the next half decade of film slate is getting a tad ridiculous. If there isn’t any actual news to release, then just don’t release it. Marvel aren’t the only ones at fault here. Look at DC/Warner and their ever shifting schedule. In a race to show they can match Marvel, DC announced a slate of films a couple of years back which included standalone sequels to Man of Steel. This year the slate was updated, and along with a variety of films moving release dates from one year to the next, now MoS 2 has vanished, and Batman is added to the mix. In fact the DC slate changes so often that the only definite thing so far is Suicide Squad and BvS next year.
You may argue that these long term announcements with no real detail creates a buzz, and generates excitement, but does it really? Seriously, you know something is coming out in 5 years but don’t know what. Speculate all you like about it being a New Universe spin off, or Secret Wars 1, 2 and 3 filmed back to back, but all that will happen is that when it is revealed to be Iron Man Armour Wars, Planet Hulk, and another Thor film, you will just feel a bit daft for having gotten giddy about wild speculation.
Let’s focus on the actual films in production, not the flights of fancy from an undetermined future.