For years now, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been building momentum toward a giant crossover event — “Avengers: Infinity War.” Even the movies not directly related to the Avengers team, like “Guardians of the Galaxy,” relate back to the central conflict of the supervillain Thanos, who is totally going to show up to wreak havoc eventually.
“Infinity War” is still a long way off, though — it won’t be out for another year. In the meantime, there are three more Marvel Cinematic Universe movies coming out in 2017 to keep fans busy while they wait.
Up first is “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.” It hits theaters on May 5, 2017.
Even though most of the first “Guardians” was set pretty far from Earth and the rest of the Marvel superheroes, it had a big Thanos connection. Gamora (Zoe Saldana) is the adopted daughter of Thanos, as is Nebula, who apparently joins up with the Guardians in “Vol. 2.” The Guardians also managed to save an Infinity Stone at the end of the first movie, which Thanos needs for his ultimate end game.
After “Guardians” comes the big return of a fan favorite to the MCU: Spider-Man (Tom Holland). After showing up as a big part of “Captain America: Civil War” in 2016, Spider-Man gets his own new movie that’s part of the larger project. That’s “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” and it’s set to come out on July 7, 2017. We know that Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) will play a role in Spider-Man’s new story, but not much more beyond that.
We get back to the Avengers proper with the last MCU movie set for 2017, “Thor: Ragnarok.” The third “Thor” movie has Thor (Chris Hemsworth) fighting the Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) somewhere out on the other side of the universe. It comes out on Nov. 3, 2017.
The first Marvel Cinematic Universe movie of 2018 is “Black Panther,” which kicks off on Feb. 16, 2018. And after that, we’ll finally get to “Avengers: Infinity War” — May 4, 2018.
But that won’t be the end of the MCU by any stretch — the sequel to “Ant Man” is due in 2018, and more MCU entries are slated for 2019.