Marvel pushes Thor to 2011, Avengers to 2012; Spider-Man 4 gets a date (updated x2)

avengers Marvel Studios has released a revised release schedule for its upcoming film slate:

Iron Man 2 is staying put on May 7, 2010. It’s still being cast, but sets are apparently under construction, so it’s probably a good bet it’ll stay there for good. Jon Favreau returns to the director chair for the sequel, from a script by Justin Theroux. Robert Downey Jr., Don Cheadle, and Sam Jackson have all signed onto the sequel.

Kenneth Branagh’s Thor was to have followed Iron Man 2 on July 16, 2010, but has been pushed forward to June 17, 2011 May 20, 2011. The film hasn’t had any casting announcements, but that’s not stopping the rumor mongers.… (“Alexander Skarsgård had lunch with Kenneth Branagh! HE MUST BE THOR!”) Kenneth Branagh is directing from Mark Protosevich’s script.

The still-badly-titled The First Avenger: Captain America follows Thor now, on July 22, 2011, pushed forward a bit from its original May 6, 2011 date. Joe Johnston (Jurassic Park III, The Rocketeer) is attached to direct a script by Narnia screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.

And, finally, The Avengers movie — which we only know for sure will feature Sam Jackson —was bumped from July 15, 2011, to May 4, 2012. There is no director attached yet, but I’m hoping this mean they’ll now have the time to let Iron Man helmer Jon Favreau direct the big team-up flick. Favreau had previously expressed interest early last year, but after Marvel announced the release date and prior to his signing to Iron Man 2, he was concerned about the unrealistically close release date (to Iron Man 2). As recently as October — after signing for the Iron Man sequel (and as executive producer on The Avengers) — Favreau has stated that he would not be directing it.

Says David Maisel, the Chairman of Marvel Studios: “This new schedule strongly sequences Marvel’s movie debut dates, big screen character introductions and momentum. It maximizes the visibility of our single character-focused films, leading to the highly anticipated release of the multi-character The Avengers film in 2012.” Uhhh, sure, whatever.

Marvel took this opportunity to announce that Sony’s Spider-Man 4 is now aiming for Captain America‘s old date, on May 6, 2011. But the real question there is, do Spidey’s fans still care, after the widely reviled third installment?

Going back to Iron Man 2 for a second, Mickey Rourke now looks like a lock for Whiplash, but Marvel has not confirmed this. (The movie version of Whiplash will incorporate some elements of the Crimson Dynamo.) The Variety article about Rourke’s (still not definite) casting mentions the oft-repeated rumor that Scarlett Johannson is the front-runner for the Black Widow. Now, I suppose her recent hair-color change could have something do with this, but I still say that rumor just sounds like fanwank.

UPDATE (3/13/09): A spy for AICN suggests that Favreau will indeed direct The Avengers now, after all. This is anything but official, of course, but cross your fingers!

The spy confirms recent rumors that Josh Hartnett is close to signing for Loki, as well, “because Branagh’s a big fan of the Othello adaptation O where Hartnett played Iago, who is very similar character-wise to how he sees Loki.”

UPDATE (3/17/09): Paramount, the distributor for Marvel Studios’ in-house films, has moved Thor from June 17, 2011, to May 20, 2011 — just two weeks after Spider-Man 4’s date. That just seems… like a bad idea.

Posted on March 12, 2009 at 11:18 by Gordon@MovieMakeout · Permalink
In: News

3 Responses

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  1. Written by Number_6
    on 2009-03-12 at 18:21

    Yahoo is reporting that there is confirmation of both Mickey Rourke and Scarlett Johansson both for Iron Man 2. Rourke will be Whiplash and Scarlett Johansson will be Black Widow. Looks like it’ll be good. Here’s the link:

  2. Written by milesperminute
    on 2009-03-12 at 21:46

    Sucks that they were pushed back, but these movies are so far in the future that I’m happy if they still exist.

  3. Written by Allan
    on 2009-03-13 at 06:42

    If they are combining Crimson Dynamo with Whiplash, I’m hoping they go with the most recent redesign of the Crimson Dynamo armor, and add Whiplashes coils to it. The most recent design of the gauntlets would lend themselves to the addition of the coils, and would probably look pretty cool. I’m excited to see what Rourke does with this role.

    As for Black Widow, I don’t know that I’d choose Scarlett Johansson for the part. But I can’t argue that she’d put people in the seats. I’m more interested to know which interpretation of the character they’re going to run with (616 or Ultimates). Like everything else, they’ll probably just flip a coin (or balance it on it’s side).

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