The MCU schedule is packed for 2022. We are supposed to get 3 movies and 6 Disney+ projects at most (including The Halloween Special, I am Groot, and the Guardians Holiday Special). But there’s a strong chance that one of the upcoming movies could cause the MCU release schedule to move again. And that film could turn out to be Thor: Love and Thunder. Before I tell you why, here’s what the upcoming MCU Release Schedule looks like:
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness – May 6, 2022
Thor: Love and Thunder – July 8, 2022
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – November 11, 2022
The Marvels – February 17, 2023
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 – May 5, 2023
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania – July 28, 2023
These films will be followed by five others (including Fantastic Four) which are to be slotted on these dates – November 3, 2023; February 16, 2024; May 3, 2024; July 26, 2024, & November 8, 2024. MCU’s movie schedule has been moved thrice to allow the productions to be completed in time. Thor: Love and Thunder in particular began from November 5, 2021. Then it got pushed to the February 2022 slot before coming to May and ended up on July 8. But now it could be in for another delay for two major reasons.
Number 1 – Reshoots
Thor: Love and Thunder is supposed to be just about 3.5 months away from us. But as per The Ankler‘s Jeff Sneider (via The Direct), the film has been undergoing reshoots involving Christian Bale’s Gorr the Godbutcher. Over the years, reshoots have become a part and parcel for all major blockbusters. Sometimes they are significant and are needed to alter the entire narrative. On other instances, actors are called back to fix minor errors and inconsistencies. But we don’t know the status of Thor 4 as it has restarted filming way too late in the game!
It is possible that Thor 4’s reshoots aren’t as significant and could be edited into the final cut within the given 3.5 months left. But given that the reshoots involve Gorr, a bit of VFX work might be required as far as the All Black Necrosword is concerned. So, the leftover time might prove to be pretty less. It’s kind of a bummer because Love and Thunder had begun filming in January 2021 and ended it in June. So, it should have been in its final editing stages by now. But reshoots at this time could be alarming!!
Number 2 – Lack of Marketing
The minor reshoots wouldn’t have felt as scary if we would have got a trailer already. She-Hulk is supposed to come much later in the year and we’ve already seen footage for that. But Love and Thunder really hasn’t kicked off its marketing campaign. All we’ve seen are a few promo art leaks and Lego leaks. Jeff Sneider even hinted that Marvel Studios has yet to release the much-anticipated first trailer because of the reshoots. So, is it possible that they aren’t feeling confident about the July 8 release?
At the very least, Marvel movies usually begin their marketing campaign about 5 months before the film’s release. But the fact that we haven’t seen any piece of footage for Thor 4 could mean that the film may follow WB’s recent DC delays. So, what are the options that Marvel has for its delay?
Thor 4 and Other Potential Delays
If the film has to be pushed, the first choice of delay could be September 2, 2022. September never used to be Marvel’s preferred month of release until Shang-Chi broke the bank last year. So maybe Marvel could push Thor to Sept 2 since the date is sitting idle with no competition whatsoever. (October is not vacant)
Or maybe they could consider option number 2, i.e. pushing most of the future schedule. Since The Dark World, Thor has been a November release franchise. So, Love and Thunder could be pushed to November 11 slot, and Wakanada Forever could follow its predecessor by taking the February 17, 2023 release date since December 2022 slot is not vacant (Avatar 2 – Dec 16). Black Panther 2 halted filming last year due to multiple reasons, and it restarted much later than it was supposed to in 2022. So, it may be in dire need to be pushed as well.
All this would leave The Marvels out of place. So, Marvel could either move all their films to the next scheduled release date (The Marvels to May 2023, Guardians Vol. 3 to July, Quantumania to November and so on), or they could just push The Marvels all the way back to November 2023, keeping Guardians 3 and Ant-Man 3 intact if the narrative could allow that.
I really hope that the first option would be feasible if a delay really has to happen because it would be criminal if we got just two MCU movies this year.
But maybe I’m overthinking this and we’d just get the first trailer of Thor: Love and Thunder in a few days with the July 8 date intact. In that case, you can ignore my scared, but reasonable rant!! Cheers!!