Deep Thoughts: Hypothetical Marvel Studios 2023 Release Calendar, V3

The future slate of Marvel Studios is more fluid now than it’s ever been. With the industry STILL being impacted by COVID to some degree, a backlog of projects that could be shuffled in and out of any date at any time, and the interesting lack of a 2022 press preview kit from Disney, fans are left frivolously hypothesize, predict and speculate when to expect their most anticipated MCU projects. And we’re here to help you with your favorite addiction. This isn’t our first attempt to pin down 2023’s projects; you can check out V1 here and V2 here to compare notes.

As much as everybody wants to see the Samuel L. Jackson/Nicky Fury-led Secret Invasion, the 2022 schedule seems to be complete without it. While we still don’t know very much about the plot of either Secret Invasion or The Marvels, it does seem like the two could share some sort of narrative bridge that would be well-served by them debuting relatively close to one another.

By the time The Marvels hits theaters, it will have been in the can for nearly a year and a half. That’s part of the backlog of projects created by the pandemic, which really changed the well-established production paradigm that Marvel Studios had followed for well over a decade. That means a lot of time to breathe for the characters in between appearances which creates a lot of anticipation…and you know Marvel Studios likes that.

After a little bit of a delay to the start of its production, Echo looks like it’ll be up and running in Georgia in April of 2022 and permits have been filed around Atlanta for the month of May. Given the “grounded” nature of Maya and the types of characters being cast in supporting roles, it doesn’t sound like this one is going to be a VFX showcase, so it should be ready to stream on Disney Plus in March of 2023. Of course, the question on fans’ minds is how much will Daredevil and Kingpin be involved and how might this series dovetail into the Daredevil solo project in development at Marvel Studios. Here’s to hoping Maya remains the focus of this series as there’s plenty of room for Daredevil to explore on his own.

At some point in the first half of 2023, Ahsoka, a highly-anticipated, live-action Star Wars streaming series, will hit Disney Plus. We now know that Disney Plus is not opposed to streaming live-action Star Wars and Marvel Studios’ projects simultaneously, but if Ahsoka rolls out sometime in early May, X-Men ’97, which is on track for a 2023 release, could stream concurrently with that and fill the Marvel Studios streaming void until June, leaving some live-action stuff for later in the year.

James Gunn’s third Guardians’ film might well be his last Marvel Studios’ project. By the time this comes out, it’ll have been over a decade since Gunn started work on Guardians of the Galaxy and as we’ve seen through his recent work on The Suicide Squad and Peacemaker, he’s really on top of his game. This one sounds like it’ll be something really special and emotional, with Gunn saying goodbye not only to Marvel but to some characters he’s really grown to love.

With the production of Season 2 of Loki on track to begin in June of 2022, it should be ready to roll out in June of 2023. While it isn’t clear whether or not Secret Invasion provides a direct runway to the events of The Marvels, it seems VERY clear that Loki Season 2 and Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania share a narrative canvas and that the former can easily hand off a storyline to the latter.

2023 could end up being the Summer of Kang. Jonathan Majors thrilled audiences with a tease of what to expect when the character returns, and it looks like when he does it’ll be a much heavier dose. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania will feature some version(s) of the character fresh off of what’s expected to be a major role in Season 2 of Loki. Of course, Kang’s not the only villain fans can look forward to, as M.O.D.O.K. is also reportedly making his live-action debut, played by Corey Stoll. Should the schedule fall this way, it would represent a great example of the type of synergy Marvel Studios can pull off thanks to a parent company that has its own streaming service and total control over the release schedule.

While a lot of fans are expecting this to be tied into Armor Wars, all the early evidence suggests it is essentially a follow-up to Riri Williams adventures in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. That’s not to say that Riri might not show up in Armor Wars or that the events of Ironheart might not lead into the Don Cheadle-led streamer, in fact it would make a lot of sense if she did, but Riri will be busy enough on her own following her huge role in Wakanda Forever.

When V2 of the 2023 Hypothetical Calendar was published, Agatha: House of Harkness had only just been revealed by the trades a few days before and the official Disney Plus Day announcement was about a week away. Now, it really does look like it could make the 2023 release slate given the tentative October 2022 start of production. It seems like the perfect Spooky Season release for Marvel Studios, so slotting it here seems a no-brainer.

After a couple of production delays, Blade is looking at a Fall 2022 start of principal photography, which makes it the best candidate for the currently unfilled November 3, 2023 release date, especially with production on Captain America 4 officially delayed until 2023. It doesn’t hurt, of course, that it’ll come out right around Halloween and feature a vampire hunter, and it wouldn’t be entirely surprising to see this date slide back a week earlier where nothing major is currently scheduled for any studio.

Armor Wars, like Agatha: House of Harkness, is on track for a late-2022 start of production. While a 2023 debut is by no means set in stone for Armor Wars, there is a nice end-of-the-year window for it, should it be completed and ready to stream. We know very little about the project, but Kevin Feige seems to enjoy playing with the idea of having some streaming series thematically tied to the seasons in which they are released, so maybe, like Hawkeye, Armor Wars could be set during the holidays. After all, is there any better present than Stilt-Man?

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