- Disney’s new strategy focuses on sequels and franchises, recognizing the need to bring audiences back to theaters and maintain familiarity for success.
- Marvel Studios’ recent movies, while not bad, have struggled to meet the high expectations set by the epic conclusion of
- Disney CEO Bob Iger aims to bring Marvel Studios back to its groundbreaking and tightly-scripted storytelling roots, despite the current scattered nature of the multiverse narratives.
Under the leadership of Bob Chapek, Disney’s message to Kevin Feige’s Marvel Studios appeared to be go big and go fast. However, the resulting splurge of titles, both in cinemas and on Disney+, soon found people overwhelmed at the sheer volume of new projects they needed to keep up with. And that is without mentioning the rapid decline in positive reviews, a noticeable quality issue from rushed turnaround times, and the belief that the MCU was finally about to crash and burn.
Following the latest earnings call, current CEO Bob Iger reiterated a change in strategy that will now see Disney’s main focus being put on their best-known franchises, sequels, and a deceleration of Marvel Studios’ output. This wild pivot is not really a surprise, as the brakes appeared to have been put on Marvel Studios towards the end of last year, with many upcoming projects postponed until 2025 as result of the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes.
In his statement (via The Wrap), Iger shared his vision of where Disney’s best chance of success lies, saying:
“I’d say we’re leaning a little bit more into sequels and franchises. I think given the environment and given what it takes to get people out of their homes to see a film … leaning on franchises that are familiar is actually a smart thing.
In our zeal to greatly increase volume partially tied to this wanting to chase more global subs for our streaming platform, some of our studios lost a little focus. So the first step that we’ve taken is that we’ve reduced volume, we reduced output, particularly in Marvel.”
Marvel Studios Has Not Recaptured the Magic of the Infinity Saga
While Marvel Studios’ ambitious plans for the Multiverse Saga are sound on paper, the main issue the franchise faced was always going to be fan expectation. Following the unparalleled epic conclusion of phase three with Avengers: Endgame and the coda that was Spider-Man: No Way Home, fans expected more to follow on the same scale. Instead, they were greeted with Black Widow, Eternals and Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings – not bad movies, just very much “Phase 1” movies that did not maintain the Endgame level that had become an unspoken norm.
Naturally, there was always going to be a reset needed after such a biblical behemoth, and phase four was it. In retrospect, many will probably come to view those movies, and the films of Phase 5 so far, in a different light once the Multiverse Saga reaches its crescendo in 2027 with Avengers: Secret Wars.
Who Should Direct Avengers: Secret Wars
Marvel Studios is currently looking for a director to take on Avengers: Secret Wars and these are the best choices for the epic Phase 6 conclusion.
In the meantime, it does seem like Iger is determined to get Marvel Studios back to the top of its game in terms of ground-breaking special effects and tightly-scripted storytelling – even if those stories are currently scattered across the multiverse.
To catch up on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, you can find dozens of movies and TV shows on Disney+.