The Marvel Cinematic Universe changed rapidly in Phase Three, leading to plenty of success for Disney in the process. In addition to the box office and critical performance of each blockbuster, Phase Three also made the MCU a more diverse place. While the first two phases were largely focused on white male characters, people of color got a chance to shine in movies like Black Panther, Ant-Man and The Wasp, and Captain Marvel.
The call for onscreen inclusion has been a major subject in the film world, especially when it comes to major franchises like the MCU and Star Wars. Marvel Studios' Kevin Feige has been open about the franchise's dedication to diversity, even going so far as to say an LGBT superhero would enter the shared universe before long. Victoria Alonso has been a producer on every MCU installment, and when asked about the recent report that The Eternals was seeking an openly gay actor, Alonso added fuel to the fire, saying:
Well, that certainly seems hopeful for advocates and moviegoers hoping that the Marvel Cinematic Universe will include its first gay superhero. Victoria Alonso thinks the world is ready, which may hint at the plans for the MCU in Phase Four. After all, The Eternals is being actively developed.
Victoria Alonso's comments to Variety show that the Marvel Cinematic Universe will only continue to get more diverse after Avengers: Endgame. While the studio is keeping its cards close the chest to avoid spoilers, obviously there are big plans cooking. Alonso may be unable to reveal any concrete information until Phase Three concludes, but she didn't deny the report of The Eternals seeking an openly gay actor for a leading role. So that development just gained some momentum
Of course, some might say that the Marvel Cinematic Universe already introduced an LGBT character during Phase Three. Tessa Thompson made her Marvel debut as Valkyrie in Thor: Ragnarok, and revealed she was playing the Asgardian heroine as a bisexual woman. In fact, Taika Waititi's threequel originally included a scene that alluded to Valkyrie's sexuality, although it ultimately ended up on the cutting room floor. Still, the character was one that fans seemed to respond to, so smart money says she'll back in one way or another during Phase Four.
Now that people of color and women have been given more of a chance to shine, it seems only natural that Marvel Studios would continue making its shared universe an even more inclusive place. Kevin Feige has teased that the future of the MCU is female, so there's no telling what the release schedule could look like after Avengers: Endgame finally arrives in theaters.
Answers will come once Avengers: Endgame concludes Phase Three on April 26th. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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