“Welcome to the fray.”
Robert Downey Jr. greeted Chadwick Boseman’s entry into the Marvel Cinematic universe Tuesday at the El Capitan Theater in L.A., where Marvel Studiosunveiled a slate of movies that will have fanboys psyched until 2019.
Boseman was cast as T’Challa, the ruler of Wakanda and the title superhero of Black Panther. The movie is scheduled for release Nov. 3, 2017, and will be part of Marvel’s “Phase 3” slate beginning with Ant-Man in July.
Introduced in 1966, Black Panther was the first black superhero in comics, and the film — in addition to a female-led Captain Marvel project in 2018 — infuses diversity into Marvel’s lineup of movie characters.
After Downey told him to get used to a heap of applause from the gathered crowd, Boseman confirmed that Black Panther “is kind of his own guy. I’m blessed to be a part of this Marvel Universe, to work with you both, and to make magic together.”
Black Panther is one of Marvel’s most interesting characters, said Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige. “He’s a bit of a prince, he may even become a bit of a king, but it’s all about how this isolationist country meets the world. Maybe it goes well, maybe it doesn’t.”
Among the other Marvel movies detailed or announced:
• Captain America: Civil War, out May 6, 2016, will be the third solo movie for Chris Evans’ star-spangled superhero and will pit him against his Avengers teammate, Iron Man (Downey). The film also features the debut of Boseman as Black Panther.
• Doctor Strange arrives in theaters Nov. 4, 2016, though the rumored casting ofBenedict Cumberbatch as the Sorcerer Supreme was not confirmed and the British actor was not in attendance.
• Guardians of the Galaxy 2 moves from its previously announced July 2017 date to May 5 of that year, with director James Gunn and star Chris Pratt among the returnees.
• Arriving July 28, 2017 is Thor: Ragnarok with Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddlestonback as the title thunder god and his trickster brother Loki, respectively.
• Captain Marvel, out July 6, 2018, introduces superheroine Carol Danvers into the Marvel mix and marks the first movie from the studio to be headlined by a woman.
• Coming Nov. 2, 2018 is Inhumans, which introduces a new world of characters and a story that revolves around an ancient race of superpowered beings that are hidden away from human civilization.
• And seemingly inspired by the likes of Twilight, Hunger Games and The Hobbit, a third Avengers movie will be broken up into two parts, one out May 4, 2018, and the second due May 3, 2019. Its subtitle, Infinity War, hints that the Earth’s greatest heroes will be pitted against the cosmic villain Thanos, who appeared in an end-credits scene in the first Avengers film and was voiced by Josh Brolin in Guardians of the Galaxy.