It’s easy to lose track of what comic book movies are coming out when. Between Marvel and DC jostling for position with their respective five-year plans, and Warner/Fox/Sony each trying to cash in on the heroes they currently own the rights to, there’s no shortage of choices. That being so, they can’t all be winners. Sure, up until now Marvel has yet to have a true flop at the box office, while DC will always have Batman and Superman to fill seats. But with the veritable boatload of comic book adaptations on the docket, some of them are bound to fail.
That being so, there are a select few that everyone’s eyes are fixed on. It’s a mixed bag of reboots, sequels, and brand new heroes, doling out something for everybody. We don’t know for sure whether any of these will be good or bad, but what we do know is that people are looking forward to the release of them nonetheless.
1. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, March 25, 2016
For the first time in cinematic history, we’ll be seeing the Batman/Superman crossover we’ve always wanted. The two have tangled before in the comic books, and of course are two of the primary members of DC’s Justice League. For this one, it’ll act as the official debut of Ben Affleck as the Caped Crusader, marking the next step for Batman in the post-Nolan era. Most importantly though, freaking Superman and Batman are going to fight each other, and rumor has it we’ll see both Aquaman and Wonder Woman. Basically, this one will be chock full of DC goodies to get the ball rolling on their Phase 1.
2. Captain America: Civil War, May 6, 2016
This one technically acts as the third Captain America movie, but really what it is more is a quasi-Avengers flick. The cast list that was just released tells us that virtually every hero from the Marvel Universe (including Spider Man) will be appearing in the legendary battle between Cap and Tony Stark. The basic plot follows the exploits of a house divided, as Stark stands behind legislation that would require all super-powered individuals to register with the government. Captain America, his new Avengers, and a portion of other assorted heroes take issue with this, and the intra-hero war begins.
3. X-Men: Apocalypse, May 27, 2016
Spring of 2016 is going to be jam-packed with comic book movies, and X-Men: Apocalypse is no exception. Acting as Bryan Singer’s final X-Men film, it’ll be end-of-days focused, on the titular villain looking to bring about the end of the world as we know it. New and old heroes alike will unite to stop him, forever making us ask why we shouldn’t agree with the abject terror humans consistently feel for mutants that constantly endanger their lives. Regardless, it doesn’t have Brett Ratner attached to it, so expectations are running high.
4. Wonder Woman, June 23, 2017
Wonder Woman’s 2017 release is important for a number of reasons. Most importantly though, it’ll represent the first superhero movie in the modern era starring a female lead (sorry Catwoman and Elektra, you don’t count). Gal Gadot will take on the role, as an important cog in the DC Phase 1 universe kicking off in 2016 with Batman v Superman. Casting isn’t completely finished, but this will act as an important barometer for studios in featuring female heroes, something they’ve been remiss in for far too long. More is on the docket in the form of Captain Marvel and Netflix’s A.K.A. Jessica Jones, but the first step from DC will be an important one.
5. Avengers: Infinity War Pt I, May 4, 2018
The Infinity War saga is one that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been building toward since it first started. In it, Thanos will (allegedly) take control of all six infinity stones in his quest to control the universe. It’ll once again be the ultimate MCU team-up, even rumored to feature the Guardians of the Galaxy, spanning the lengths of space and time to bring every Marvel hero together in one film. Part II goes out on May 3 of the following year, officially rounding out the primary plot the studio will have leaned on for over a decade, beginning with the appearance for the Tesseract in Captain America.
6. Deadpool 2, no official release date
With Deadpool breaking every record imaginable for R-Rated superhero movies, it didn’t take long before 20th Century Fox green-lit a sequel. The end-credit tag for the movie itself actually teased at that sequel too, revealing that Cable will be appearing in the next film. Fans of the source material are likely familiar with the Deadpool and Cable series that’s become an iconic comic book story. Odds are, something to that effect is what’s coming next for the Merc with a Mouth.
7. Wolverine 3, March 3, 2017
20th Century Fox seems to be leading the way in exciting new takes on the superhero genre, evidenced both by the success of Deadpool, and the plans for the third installment in the standalone Wolverine saga. The movie is rumored to be Hugh Jackman’s last turn as the titular immortal mutant, following the Old Man Logan story from the comics. The cherry on top: It’ll be Fox’s next try at an R-Rated superhero movie, capitalizing on the box office success of the trailblazing Deadpool.
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