The future is bright for Comic Book movies and with four major film studios vying for blockbuster payouts there are a plethora of quality titles to entice you into the cinemas in the coming years.
In Part 6 we talked about the new faces to the world of Supermovies, Valiant Comics, as they try to get some of the action with Bloodshot. We also looked at The Flash in his post-Justice League solo outing and we talked the beginnings of Avengers 3: Infinity War.
We now take a look at the most crammed month in Supermovies history with July 2018 boasting four big-hitters, and one from each of the big-hitting studios. Let’s take a look…
Black Panther (Marvel) Dir. Unknown
Unless Marvel go in an unexpected route for Spider-Man (introducing Miles Morales instead of Peter Parker) Black Panther will be the first time a black superhero will get their own solo feature on July 6th. This is of course in the new era of Supermovies, with Blade and the dreadful Spawn getting a run out before.
Chadwick Boseman, who has impressed in 42 and Get On Up, will join the MCU alongside whichever Spidey they choose, the Avengers and many more in next year’s highly anticipated Captain America: Civil War. In both 42 and Get On Up, Boseman has portrayed African-American heroes, baseball legend Jackie Robinson and ‘the Godfather of Soul’ James Brown, in Black Panther he will bring a third to the big screen.
Black Panther was the first black superhero to emerge in mainstream comics, paving the way for characters such as The Falcon (already seen in Captain America: Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron), Luke Cage (soon to feature in his own Netflix series) and X-Men’s Storm.
This movie will probably be an origin story, as most first solo films are, but this will not be your run-of-the-mill teenage angst in an America cityscape caper like the majority of Supermovie origins. Black Panther, or T’Challa to give him his proper name, is the king of an untouched African country called Wakanda. This fictional land has never been conquered and boasts a truly unique landscape of vast technology intertwining with cultural shrines. The Wakandans are a people of history, wisdom and wealth.
Another aspect of the comic books, which we might see, is the Wakandan links to magic. As Doctor Strange will be making his appearance on the big screen in late 2016, the MCU viewers will already have had a taste for the mystical side of the Marvel Universe.
The wealth in Wakanda is due to their control over the earth’s entire supply of Vibranium. Vibranium has reared its head in the MCU twice before. Firstly in Captain America: The First Avenger where Howard Stark explains that Cap’s shield is made of the very same stuff. Secondly and most recently we were introduced to the rare mineral in Age of Ultron; in fact, for those of us in the know, Age of Ultron introduced a lot more.
Some SPOILERS here for those who have still not seen Age of Ultron (seriously, come on. Just go see it)
We were reintroduced to Vibranium as Ultron visits Ulysses Klaue (portrayed by Andy Serkis) and jerkishly chops off one of his hands. Klaue (or Klaw) is one of Black Panther’s most notable foes in the comics and I am sure we have not seen the last of Serkis in the MCU. Also with his arm now gone it leaves a space for his Vibranium-powered sonic-blaster, which goes hand-in-hand with Klaw in the comics (I couldn’t resist).
All things considered, this should be a groundbreaking step for the MCU and just look at that suit. He looks badass!
Unknown X-Men Movie (Fox) Dir. Unknown
With Deadpool, X-Men: Apocalypse and Gambit to hit our screens in 2016 and Wolverine 3 to follow in 2017 it is totally up in the air to what this film might entail. One can assume it will be a very different line up from the last outing in Days of Future Past as many of the older characters are getting a re-do for Apocalypse.
Essentially the next X-Men installment will be moving on from the Patrick Stewart generation into the James McAvoy era and start to replace key members such as Jean Grey, Cyclops and Storm with new-bloods. The recently released version of Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee) can be seen above.
I was a huge fan of the X-Men revamp last time around and thanks to their time travelling they can do it all over again with the same house-hold names from yesteryear (well 2000). Bryan Singer is back in the director’s chair and he has the abilities to push on with the X-Men for another while.
Only time will tell to see who’s even left alive to feature in the July 13th release.
Untitled Spider-Man Animated Movie (Sony) Dir. Unknown
Again with this project so far in the future the plot or casting for this feature is pretty much guess work. What we do know is that the comedic dream-team Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs, The Lego Movie, 21 & 22 Jump Street and soon to be The Flash) are set to write and produce this animated flick.
This is going to be inside yet outside of the other Spidey cinematic ventures. Sony Pictures chairman Tom Rothman said the film will “co-exist” with the live-action Spider-Man but a Sony press release stated “The film will exist independently of the projects in the live-action Spider-Man universe, all of which are continuing.” So that’s not confusing Sony, cheers.
All will be revealed in the future.
Aquaman (Warner Bros.) Dir. James Wan
Again, like Black Panther, this would not be your typical origin story if they go in that direction, although it would be his third appearance in the DCU so we may already be privy to his backstory. This is the problem (in my opinion) of how DC and Warner have tried to approach their Avengers-rivaling team; bunch them up together and then deal with solo film later. If we are already familiar with the characters then we want to see them progress however if they are restricted to screen time due to the vast number of characters then we would like some backstory. I can see this being a problem for DC and Warner in the future.
Momoa, however, is just happy to be involved. He was recently interviewed for Entertainment weekly and when asked about the role he said:
The whole mythology of Aquaman is pretty amazing. There are so many things to tell, and there’s a whole backstory that’s just amazing. There are a lot of surprises coming. I think, yeah, he’s been cast aside. But, um [laughs] times are going to change now, buddy.
What’s great about this is Zack, man. We don’t want to just reinvent it, but he’s got a whole idea of what Aquaman should be and I’m really honored to be playing it. I’m excited for the world to see it.
This is also definitely going to be a zero-fucks-giving Aquaman. With Momoa in that suit, there is no way this will be a touchy-feely sort of movie. I can see him being the Thor of the Justice League; from another world, probably talks a bit weird, rocks a beard, unintentionally hilarious and a beast on the battlefield. I can live with that. Aquaman hits the cinemas on July 27th to end our four-week bonanza.
Update June 4th 2015: James Wan has been signed up to direct the under-water superhero. Wan has directed Saw, The Conjuring and Insidious and I am not a fan of any of those movies. Taking a primarily director of horror and throwing him into the world of superheroes could produce something new, only time will tell. Wan also was in the director’s chair for Furious Seven – at least we know he can do ridiculous action and destruction. Move over Zack, a new boy is in town.
Coming Up in Part 8
We reach the end of 2018 with the eagerly awaited Captain Marvel, Marvel’s first female-led Supermovie, before introducing Warner Bros’ Shazam and concluding both Infinity War and Justice League.
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