Since the conclusion of the Infinity Saga, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been expanding at a rapid pace. With multiple movies and shows introducing new heroes and teams, it was only a matter of time before a group of villains got time to shine on the big screen. Well, that time will come soon enough with THUNDERBOLTS, an upcoming Marvel movie that will finally tell the story of one of the comic world’s best teams of antiheroes and villains.
If this is the first you’ve heard of the Marvel Phase 5 movie, or the group that bears its name, don’t worry because we’re about to break down some key details about both before the highly-anticipated film opens in AMC Theatres nationwide in a little under two years’ time.
Thunderbolts Opens July 2024
Those eager to know more about the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe were in for some good news at the 2022 San Diego Comic Con where the next few phases were fleshed out. During Marvel Studios’ exciting presentation, President Kevin Feige walked everyone through the next few years of the MCU and its multiple phases. One of the biggest reveals from the showcase was THUNDERBOLTS. But it wasn’t just a reveal of the title; the movie got a release date as well.
On July 26, 2024, THUNDERBOLTS will open in AMC Theatres nationwide, allowing audiences to see a different kind of supergroup, one that isn’t as wholesome or moral as the various members of the Avengers we’ve come to know and love over the course of the past decade-plus.
Antiheroes And Villains
The comic book version of the Thunderbolts was formed by Baron Zemo who did so to take advantage of a world without superheroes by creating his own team to earn the trust of the public and government officials. However, Zemo had a hidden agenda, which is to be expected from a villain with his moral standing.
Over the years, villains like Goliath, Venom, Taskmaster, Rhino, and various others have found their way to different versions of the group. But at the same time, several antiheroes, some of whom have had connections with the Avengers or been a part of the team of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, worked alongside the group. In fact, some key members of the Thunderbolts have also been called the Dark Avengers, appearing in some of Marvel’s biggest comic book crossover events.
Connection Between The Avengers And The Thunderbolts
Sometimes heroes and villains must find common ground and learn to coexist against a greater evil, which has been the case for the Thunderbolts and the Avengers on several occasions over the years. There have been times in the past where some of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes like Captain America have attempted to mentor the group of villains and antiheroes while others like Hawkeye have even joined their ranks temporarily. There have even been times where the likes of Black Widow and Ant-Man have joined the different versions of the Thunderbolts.
With so many variations of both the Thunderbolts and the Avengers, it should come as no surprise that there is some crossover between the two groups. And as history has shown, the groups have at times been enemies while also reluctant partners in the quest to save the universe from utter destruction.
The Team Consists Of Current MCU Characters
Those who were anxiously waiting with bated breath for the reveal of the core team in THUNDERBOLTS were able to breathe a little easier following the conclusion of Disney’s D23 Expo in September 2022.
During the event, which also saw updates for various other upcoming Marvel projects, it was revealed that Florence Pugh’s Yelena Belova would be leading the cast of the highly anticipated movie, after being introduced in BLACK WIDOW. Also joining the team will be Sebastian Stan’s Winter Soldier, David Harbour’s Red Guardian, Olga Kuryleno’s Taskmaster, Wyatt Russell’s US Agent, and Hannah John Kamen’s Ghost, who fans will remember from her turn as the tortured villain in ANT-MAN AND THE WASP.
The THUNDERBOLTS cast also includes Julia Louis Dreyfus’ Valentina Allegra de Fontaine, the shadowy character who played a behind-the-scenes role in “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” and the BLACK WIDOW end credits sequence. It has yet to be revealed if anyone else from the MCU — specifically Daniel Brühl’s Helmut Zemo or Emily VanCamp’s Sharon Carter — will play any type of role in the Phase 5 movie.
Thunderbolts Concludes Marvel’s Phase 5
Marvel’s Phase 5 will officially get underway in February 2023 with the release of ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA, which will be followed by five additional theatrical releases and at least six series on Disney+ before concluding in the summer of 2024. Wrapping up the expansive and busy schedule, which also includes GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3 and the long-awaited BLADE, is THUNDERBOLTS.
It is hard to say what kind of state the Multiverse Saga will be in once the credits roll on THUNDERBOLTS in July 2024, but with two more AVENGERS movies and the arrival of FANTASTIC FOUR following in the subsequent Marvel Phase 6, we should expect to see some major events go down. The lead-up to the movie will most likely be something else, especially with CAPTAIN AMERICA: NEW WORLD ORDER slated to arrive in May 2024.
Expect to hear much more about THUNDERBOLTS and the rest of the Marvel Phase 5 slate of films and TV shows before the highly-anticipated movie makes its big-screen debut in AMC Theatres locations nationwide on July 26, 2024.