Marvel Studios recently announced new release dates for Thor: Love and Thunder, Black Panther 2, and Captain Marvel 2, delaying all by a few months.
Marvel Studios reshuffles the Phase 4 slate once again, delaying Thor: Love and Thunder, Black Panther 2, and Captain Marvel 2 by a few months each. It has been more than a year since Kevin Feige originally announced the Phase 4 slate at San Diego Comic-Con. Marvel has added new movies to the slate since then, but the actual release order of these highly anticipated blockbusters has frequently changed.
The first change to the MCU Phase 4 slate came in early 2020 shortly after COVID-19 forced theaters to shut down and Black Widow to miss its May release. However, since the state of the pandemic and theaters has yet to improve, Marvel was forced to rearrange the slate once again. The last update put four films spread across 2021 and another four set to release within the span of five months in 2022. It seemed unlikely, for a variety of reasons, that Marvel would keep this schedule intact, and now they've quietly announced a new 2022 slate.
During Disney's Investor Day 2020, Feige shared major announcements about almost every upcoming MCU project, including the reveal of several new ones. But, all of the excitement surrounding new shows, characters, and footage overshadowed that Thor: Love and Thunder, Black Panther 2, and Captain Marvel 2 have new release dates. These changes saw Thor 4 move to May 6, 2022 after previously having a February 2022 release date. Meanwhile, Black Panther 2 was delayed from May to July 8th, and Captain Marvel 2 moved from July to November 11th.
These delays are hardly a surprise and should give Marvel Studios the necessary time to complete these films without rushing through any step of production. Thor: Love and Thunder is confirmed to begin filming in early 2021, so it should have no trouble hitting its May release date. And following reports that Thor 4 will have an Avengers-style cast, it is only fitting that it takes the usual Avengers release slot at the start of May.
Black Panther 2 was originally set to begin production in March 2021, but that was before the tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman. Everyone involved with the production took the time to mourn this loss and Feige confirmed that T'Challa will not be recast for the sequel. With whatever changes director Ryan Coogler had to make to the film, it was recently reported that Black Panther 2 will begin production in July 2021. Instead of cutting it close to have it ready by May, delaying it to July gives the sequel Marvel's usual year-long formula from the start of production to a film's release.
As for Captain Marvel 2, there have yet to be any reports about when filming would begin on Brie Larson's sequel. Nia DaCosta is confirmed to direct the film, which will also bring back Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris) and Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani). Thanks to Captain Marvel 2's new November release date, Marvel has bought themselves an additional four months of prep time before cameras have to be rolling. So, now only does the new slate benefit each of the films themselves, but now the MCU's movies will be spread throughout 2022.