When the Marvel Cinematic Universe got its start, Marvel Studios was putting out two movies per year, but that number recently increased to three per year. That's made many fans happy but the decision wasn't merely to try and milk more money from hungry moviegoers. As Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige recently explained, it's got more to do with allowing them to take risks down the road.

Kevin Feige has been out promoting the upcoming release of Ant-Man and the Wasp, the studio's third release this year. It follows in the success of Black Panther, the first new franchise they've launched this year (to record-breaking success at that), as well as Avengers: Infinity War, which was arguably the most anticipated movie of 2018. This trio of movies is quite diverse within the comic book genre and moving to three movies a year allows for that level of variation in Marvel Studios' offerings. Here's how Feige explained it.

"It's one of the reasons we've expanded to three films a year, is so that we could do the sequels to films that people have responded to, because we love to make continuing stories with characters people have responded to, but also keep doing the stuff that nobody's ever heard of, and people go, 'Why are you doing that?' That's fun. And that's what Phase One was built on, Phase Two was built on, Phase Three was built on, is having that... Whenever we announce the next year, two years, three years, five years, whatever we're going to announce, there will be plenty of those that, maybe people in the know like yourself will know what they are, but the world at large will go, 'What is it? Why are they doing that?' That's exciting, for sure."

Black Panther 2 and Doctor Strange 2, while they haven't been formally announced just yet, are guaranteed at this point. Those sequels are coming about as the result of movies that were based on characters not nearly as well known to the general public. Then there's something like Guardians of the Galaxy that spawned one of the most successful franchises in the MCU. Without three movies a year, it would be more difficult to squeeze movies like those in. As is, it took four years to get Thor: Ragnarok made, as Kevin Feige points out.

"When you've got, what is it now, six, seven separate franchises? It's part of the scheduling process. Sometimes when people ask, 'What about this character, what about that character?' I go, 'Well, it's scheduling.' And they go, 'What's he talking about?' Scheduling. How many years between movies can you have? You know, [Thor:] Ragnarok was four years. There's four years between, right? He had an appearance in between there. So that seems to be maybe okay - sometimes, though, you want it to be less. Sometimes it can be more."

As long as people keep showing up, Marvel Studios will almost certainly keep up with three movies per year. When/if the Fox deal closes, they will also be in control of the X-Men, Fantastic Four and Deadpool franchises, making it more necessary than ever to put out three movies each year. Especially since Fox won't be releasing their own superhero movies anymore. This news comes to us courtesy of CinemaBlend.

Ryan Scott at Movieweb
Ryan Scott