What are your must watch superhero movies of 2018?
2017 has been a battle royale between the DC Extended Universe and the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but there is no rest for the wicked in this golden age of superheroes.
While the DCEU seems to be on the quieter front after their massive output for 2017, the MCU is still strongly tossing their own wave in 2018.
However, 2018 is set to be a promising year for superheroes as Sony and Fox are starting to change their game and how their movies turn out for the year could mean that they have managed to carve a small little niche for themselves, as the two largest superhero titans continue to duke it out.
So here are all the superhero movies expected in 2018!
Kicking off superhero season is Marvel with "Black Panther" which will be released shortly after Valentine's Day, so that makes it the best date movie. Making his first appearance in "Captain America: Civil War", the Black Panther makes his first solo outing in the Marvel Cinematic Universe back in his Kingdom of Wakanda. This will be a milestone in the MCU, not only for being the last movie before the big one, but also for casting a primarily black cast and crew, helmed by "Fruitvale Station" and "Creed" director Ryan Coogler. Beside Chadwick Boseman reprising his role as T'Challa, and Andy Serkis returning to the MCU since "Avengers: Age of Ultron", it will also be introducing Michael B Jordan, Lupita Nyong'o, Danai Gurira, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright and Forest Whitaker.
The New Mutants
While the original X-Men series has come to its natural conclusion after "Logan", it seems that Fox is not quite done with starting a new branch from its Marvel property yet. Developed and directed by Josh Boone shortly after he finished the adaptation of "The Fault in Our Stars", "The New Mutants" will be introducing a new batch of mutants, based on the team of the same name from the comic books that find themselves trapped inside a lab. With a relative cast of unknowns except for Maisie Williams from "Game of Thrones", what's most interesting is the tonal focus of "The New Mutants" geared more towards horror inspired by Stephen King and John Hughes. Whether we are witnessing the birth of horror as a sub-genre for superhero movies, we'll have to wait and see to find out.
Avengers: Infinity Wars
With the DC Extended Universe punching out 2017 with their first ensemble movie, 2018 belongs to Marvel with the ensemble movie we've been waiting for since 2012. After being teased over 19 MCU movies, supervillain Thanos finally gets off the seat and puts on the Infinity Gauntlet. Directed by the unstoppable Russo Brothers, this would be the biggest ensemble in the MCU which will see the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy stopping Thanos from collecting the Infinity Stones for his gauntlet. All your favorites will be crammed into this once set to be a two parter, from Team Iron Man, Team Captain America, Dr. Strange, and a whole plethora of side characters that live in the MCU.
If there is one shake-up to the glut of world-saving superhero movies, it is found in the snarky offhand remarks of the Merc with the Mouth since he got his proper treatment in 2016. Announced earlier in 2016 shortly after Deadpool went looking for Francis, the creative team behind "Deadpool" also saw its own shake-up, which resulted in its original director Tim Miller to leave the team, and getting replaced by "Atomic Blonde" director David Leitch for this sequel. Besides Ryan Reynolds putting on the mask and attitude, is Josh Brolin playing his second Marvel character as Cable.
Ant-Man and the Wasp
Not too far away from the themes of "The Incredibles", the closest Marvel superhero who has to deal with family problems was last seen in 2015's "Ant-Man". This sequel will see Scott Lang teaming up with Hope van Dyne who finally dons the Wasp suit to go on a new mission. While Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lily, Michael Pena, and Michael Douglas return to reprise their respective roles, the sequel will also have appearances by Laurence Fishburne as Pym's former assistant and Michelle Pfeiffer as the original Wasp.
With the Spider-Man rights are still firmly in the hands of Sony, who is not willing to let go such a valuable cash cow, the pressure is always on them to pump out new titles that take place in the Spider-Man universe. However, "Spider-Man: Homecoming" was an unusual arrangement between Sony and Marvel. By letting the neighbourhood friendly web slinger swing about in the MCU, Marvel characters can make the occasional guest appearance in what is still a Sony production. That arrangement could extend the hold of Sony onto their only Marvel property, but it's a symbiotic partnership that works for both Sony and Marvel. And with that comes in "Venom", the first movie to be created in the MCU by Sony. Not much can be said about how its plot will fit into the MCU, but there is much greatness that can be hoped from "Zombieland" director Ruben Fleischer at the helm. Tom Hardy will undoubtedly be going back to his Bane workout routine to be the host of the symbiote, Eddie Brock, and Oscar nominee Michelle Williams is already signed up to take a role.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix
With "X-Men: The Last Stand" effectively erased from the cinematic canon by "Days of Future Past", we can all forget about the disastrous on-screen adaptation of the famed Dark Phoenix storyline. Or so we thought. With a second chance of using the main X-Men characters in new skins, Fox is taking another crack at it, this time attempting to be more faithful to the source material. This will be the directorial debut for long-time X-Men producer and writer Simon Kinberg, with the cast from "Apocalypse" returning, and adding Jessica Chastain.
Now that they have all made their formal introductions to the DCEU, it's time for each member of the Justice League to have their own screen time. This origin story of Aquaman goes deep into Atlantis where he has to find peace with those living on the surface while his own underwater home continuously gets polluted. Much hope is riding on director James Wan who enters the superhero genre, but with a cast that has Amber Heard, Patrick Wilson, Wiliam Dafoe, Dolph Lundgren and Nicole Kidman, the DCEU is slowly matching up in Atlantian audacity to catch up with MCU's casting.
Cinema Online, 13 December 2017