Phase Two has come to an end, after Marvel's summer hits Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ant-Man. Now fans have the massive Phase Three to look forward to, which will span nine movies instead of six, like the previous two phases, and will culminate with the two-part adventure Avengers: Infinity War Part I and Avengers: Infinity War - Part II, arriving in theaters in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Producer Kevin Feige revealed during a recent Q&A (via Screen Rant) that the two-part sequel will not only bring an end to Phase Three, but also to a much larger part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a whole. Here's what he had to say when asked to describe Phase Three.
"Broad strokes. Strokes that are broad enough and loose enough that - in the development of the four or five movies before we move into our culmination - allow us room to sway and move and surprise ourselves. All these movies, ultimately, should feel as if they were interconnected, all planned far ahead, and yet still pivot and breathe as individual films. Phase Three is definitely an end to some version of the team we've come to know as The Avengers. The team will always be evolving. The roster is always changing. You may pick up an Avengers book ten years later and not recognize the people on the cover. It's not going to be the end of the Marvel cinematic universe, certainly, but it will be an end to part of it."
Throughout Phase One and Phase Two, fans were introduced to a number of mystical items that were identified in Avengers: Age of Ultron as being Infinity Stones. We have only seen four of the six stones that fit into the Infinity Gauntlet. The Tesseract, a.k.a. the Space Stone, was first revealed in Captain America: The First Avenger, followed by the Aether (Reality Stone) from Thor: The Dark World, the Orb (Power Stone) from Guardians of the Galaxy and the Mind Stone from Loki's scepter, which is currently housed in the android Vision, from Avengers: Age of Ultron. The two stones that have not been unveiled yet are the Soul Stone and the Time Stone, but Kevin Feige confirmed that these stones will be unveiled in Phase Three.
"You will absolutely see the other two [Infinity Stones] sometime in Phase Three. After all, there's a Gauntlet that needs to be filled. It really began with Iron Man 2, building out the architecture for the entirety of Phase One. The notion of the Tesseract being not only the thing that ties Phase One together but that can also be a major part of Phase Two. I can't say that it was all perfectly laid out in 2009, but that was certainly the genesis of it. For example, we always knew going into Avengers: Age of Ultron that the stone in Loki's scepter that would eventually end up in Vision's head. But others come out of more simple, structural plot needs. A filmmaker might say, okay, there's a mysterious orb driving this story. At which point, we'll suggest, alright, then let's put something inside that orb."
The first movie of Phase Three, Captain America: Civil War, recently wrapped production, with production about to get under way on Doctor Strange and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. There is very little we know about both projects, but earlier this month, director James Gunn posted photos from his going-away party, before he left to start pre-production on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in Atlanta. Kevin Feige confirmed that director James Gunn and his team recently left for Atlanta, and that all of Marvel's efforts are currently going into that.
'Certainly Thanos and the Infinity Stones are the connection between all these movies. Especially Guardians. When and if those specific characters start switching remains to be seen. The Guardians 2 team just left for Atlanta on Monday to start the movie, so all our effort and thought is going directly into that - which is shaping up very nicely right now."
Avengers: Infinity War Part I and Avengers: Infinity War - Part II will both be directed by Anthony Russo and Joe Russo, who recently wrapped principal photography on Captain America: Civil War. They will be reunited with Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Captain America: Civil War screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, who are writing both movies. Do you have any theories about how Infinity War could change the MCU leading into Phase Four? Let us know what you think, and stay tuned for more details.