Marvel has already locked Phase Two, but other than Ant-Man, Phase Three is wide open. Furthermore, the powerhouse studio now has two major characters back in their stable. Daredevil and The Punisher both reverted back to Marvel when the rights lapsed at Fox and Lionsgate, respectively. Obviously, if Marvel gives the characters new movies, they’ll be reboots, but in a recent interview, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige says they’re still figuring out how to proceed with these valuable properties.
Speaking to Bleeding Cool at the Thor junket, Feige explained the studio’s current position with regards to Daredevil and The Punisher:
We’re trying to figure out what to do with Daredevil now. Punisher could show up at one point. You know, once we get characters back into the Marvel fold we don’t want to do something right away, we want to do the smart thing at the smart time.
It’s not difficult to see where Feige is coming from on this. Daredevil could be pursued in a variety of ways (sadly, Joe Carnahan’s take probably won’t be one of them), and Punisher tends to work as a way to provide contrast to other superheroes (“I kill, but they don’t!”). But Marvel has set a tone with their movies. They have different settings, but they’re all brightly colored, lively pictures. Daredevil and The Punisher are much darker than any other property Marvel currently has in development. Personally, I’d like to see Doctor Strange and Black Panther get slots in Phase Three since we haven’t seen those characters on the big screen yet, but right now I’ll enjoy Phase Two rather than looking ahead to 2016.