Sun. Jan 24th, 2021

Disney plans to go big on slew of ‘Star Wars’ and Marvel projects

Disney has announced a bunch of new projects for the next few years.

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Lucasfilm boss Kathleen Kennedy revealed at an investor event that Wonder Woman’s Patty Jenkins would direct the new Star Wars Rogue Squadron film. This will be the first time a female director has taken charge of one of the franchise films. This one is due for release over Christmas 2023.

Kennedy added that Taika Waititi, who won an Oscar in 2020 for his Jojo Rabbit screenplay was still writing the screenplay for another as yet untitled film in the franchise that Disney announced in May.

PLANS FOR 10 ‘STAR WARS’ AND 10 MARVEL SERIES

According to Hollywood Reporter, Kennedy also revealed that Disney+ had plans for 10 Star Wars series and 10 Marvel series in the near future. Hayden Christensen, who played Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars prequels, will return to play Darth Vader in the upcoming Obi-Wan miniseries starring Ewan McGregor.

Donald Glover will reprise his role as space smuggler Lando Calrissian for TV series Lando, having first appeared opposite Alden Ehrenreich in 2018 origins movie Solo: A Star Wars Story.

NEW ERA FOR ‘STAR WARS’

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Disney has gone big on streaming in recent years. Image: Polygon

Kennedy said: “The success of spin-off series The Mandalorian, which introduced Baby Yoda to the world, had opened an entirely new era for Star Wars.”

Harrison Ford will return as Indiana Jones for a fifth and final instalment in the series, and Zac Efron will star in a Disney+ reboot of childcare romp Three Men and a Baby.

TRIBUTE TO CHADWICK BOSEMAN

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Chadwick Boseman, star of ‘Black Panther’, died in 2020. Image: Supplied

Marvel chief Kevin Feige paid tribute to Chadwick Boseman, the late star of Black Panther, at the presentation.

Feige confirmed that Ryan Coogler’s forthcoming sequel to the superhero smash would not recast its central character, but explore the stories of the supporting cast.

The film is expected to be released in July 2022. There will be no attempt to digitally recreate Boseman, who died of cancer aged 43 in August 2020.

Christian Bale will co-star in Marvel’s Thor: Love and Thunder as chief villain Gorr the God Butcher. The film is set to be released in May 2022.

Nia DaCosta, whose much-anticipated reboot of the Candyman horror series is scheduled for release in 2022, will take the reins on Captain Marvel 2.

‘FANTASTIC FOUR’ SET FOR RETURN

Jon Watts, the director behind the current Spider-Man trilogy, will direct a new Fantastic Four film.

Feige also unveiled first looks at Falcon & the Winter Soldier, to be released on Disney+ in March 2021. Tom Hiddleston’s Loki series is due on screens in May 2021.

Feige was silent on Black Widow, the upcoming Avengers origins film starring Scarlett Johansson, which has had its release date moved numerous times. Feige was also quiet on the progress of James Cameron’s Avatar sequels set to premiere in 2022, 2024 and 2026.

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