Marvel Phase Three Gets Realigned To Make Room For Spider-Man

Release dates change all over the place as Phase Three adds a new superhero. 

It was just a couple of months ago that Kevin Feige did a Steve Jobs-style presentation at the El Capitan theater, laying out Marvel Studios' release dates through the end of the decade. There was a road map and it looked good. 

Now that map is outdated. As Sony and Marvel have come together to bring Spider-Man into the Marvel Cinematic Universe that entire plan has to be changed to make room, and the changes are happening as soon as 2017, as Thor: Ragnarok moves away from the July date occupied by Spider-Man: Swinging Home. Everything else gets shuffled as a result, with the new Phase Three now looking like this:

May 6, 2016: Captain America: Civil War

November 4, 2016: Doctor Strange

May 5, 2017: Guardians of the Galaxy 2

July 28, 2017: Amazing Spider-Man 3

November 4, 2017: Thor: Ragnarok

July 6, 2018: Black Panther

November 2, 2018: Captain Marvel

July 12, 2019: Inhumans

There's no word yet on how the Avengers: Infinity War diptych is being impacted. They were scheduled for May 4, 2018 and May 3, 2019 - the release date changes don't move any films onto those spots, but I wonder if the story being threaded through the MCU movies won't necessitate some position jockeying. Many people were assuming the two films released between the Avengers movies - Captain Marvel and Inhumans - played into the story. Now it's Black Panther and Captain Marvel opening between them, and it's hard to imagine how Black Panther could spring out of Avengers: Infinity War Part 1

Whatever the case, we have an incredible rest of the decade ahead of us. The Spider-Man news has proven Marvel can pull off anything, and the release date changes show that they're willing to play with the plan when they need to do so. I don't know that we should even accept these dates as final, or that these will be the only films we see in Phase Three...

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