Marvel SDCC: Natalie Portman pegged as new Thor, Disney+ integral to MCU

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Marvel SDCC Thor: Love and Thunder title art

The Marvel comics recently gave Mjölnir to a female so it’s not all that surprising that Portman has been given the mantle in the MCU.

SDCC 2019 is well underway and the Marvel SDCC panel unveiled some huge news including confirming that Natalie Portman will be the new Thor. Not only that, Marvel shows on Disney+, the upcoming streaming service from the company, will be integral to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

With MCU movies done for 2019, Marvel fans will have to wait until 2020 for their next taste of superheroes from the MCU. After last night’s Marvel SDCC panel, we now know just how long the wait will be and what to expect.

Before we get to Portman as Thor, the next movie in the MCU will be the long awaited Black Widow starring Scarlett Johansson. She will be joined by David Harbour as Alexei AKA The Red Guardian, Florence Pugh as Yelena, O-T Fagbenle as Mason, and Rachel Weisz as Melina. Black Widow will hit theatre’s on May 1, 2020.

After Black Widow, Marvel fans will get their first taste of Marvel on Disney+ in the form of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. The series will once again feature Anthony Mackie as The Falcon (and perhaps Captain America eventually?) and Sebastian Stan as The Winter Soldier. The villian in the show will be Baron Zemo, played by Daniel Brühl. The Falcon and The Winter Soldier will debut on Disney+ in the fall of 2020.

Marvel’s fall MCU released will be The Eternals, a movie about an ancient race of 35,000 year old aliens. A Jack Kirby creation, The Eternals has a huge cast and includes Richard Madden as Ikaris, Kumail Nanjiani as Kingo, Lauren Ridloff as Makkari, Brian Tyree Henry as Phastos, Salma Hayek as Ajak, Lia McHugh as Sprite, Don Lee as Gilgamesh, and Angelina Jolie as Thena. The movie hits theatres on November 6, 2020.

The Marvel SDCC panel jumped next into 2021 with a new character coming to the MCU: Shang-Chi. Referred to as “The Master of Kung-Fu,” Shang-Chi can make multiple copies of himself in addition to his martial arts prowess. Shang-Chi and the Ten Rings stars Simu Lu as Shang-Chi alongside Awkwafina and Tony Leung as The Mandarin. The movie hits theatres on February 21, 2021.

The second Disney+ series will be Wandavision and star Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany who reprise their MCU roles as Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch and Vision. As explained at the Marvel SDCC panel, here’s where the tie-ins with the MCU really start. Teyonah Parris will be playing Monica Rambeau, the second Captain Marvel. Rambeau was introduced in the Captain Marvel movie as a child. Not only that, but you’ll have to watch Wandavision if you want to be up to speed when the next Doctor Strange movie comes out. Wandavision comes to Disney+ in the spring of 2021.

Speaking of Doctor Strange, Benedict Cumberbatch returns as Stephen Strange in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. He’ll be joined by Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch in what is being described as Marvel’s first scary movie based on the dark subject matter. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness comes to theatres on May 7, 2021.

Back to Disney+ and a second show coming to the streaming service in the spring of 2021. Starring everyone’s favourite trickster, Tom Hiddleston returns as the title character in Loki. Maybe now we’ll find out where he disappeared to with the Tesseract in Avengers: Endgame.

Here’s a fun one that I’ve personally been waiting for. Marvel’s WHAT IF…? series will be hitting Disney+ in the summer of 2021. The WHAT IF…? comics always had fun one offs which really mixed up the Marvel Universe and sometimes mixed in real life personalities with Marvel characters.

Jeremy Reiner will be resprising his role as Hawkeye on the Disney+ series of the same name. While some suspected she would be in Avengers: Endgame, she wasn’t but Kate Bishop will debut in the upcoming series. Hawkeye returns in the fall of 2021.

Finally. Rounding out the Marvel MCU and Disney+ slate for the next two years is Thor: Love and Thunder. Natalie Portman is no stranger to the Thor universe, having starred as Jane Foster alongside Chris Hemsworth in two of them. The Marvel comics recently gave Thor’s hammer to a female so it’s not all that surprising that Portman has been given the mantle in the MCU. The movie will also star Chris Hemsworth, as he presumably passes off Mjölnir, and Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie.

Other projects were confirmed to be in development including the next Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Marvel, and Black Panther movies. Release dates for those sequels have yet to be announced. However, there are some movie gaps in 2021 so it’s possible one or more of these will be slated in. Another surprise announcement introduced Mahershala Ali as Blade. Coming to the MCU, again, no date announcement was made.

Kevin Feige also announced that work has begun on bringing The Fantastic Four and X-Men back into the fold. Unfortunately, it doesn’t sound like we’ll be seeing any more of The Defenders any time soon…

Based on the slate above, there will be no shortage of content for Marvel fans over the next couple of years. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like any of that will

What do you think about the news that Nathalie Portman will be taking on the mantle of Thor? What about the rest of the MCU and Disney+ Marvel SDCC news unveiled? Let us know in the comments below or on Twitter, Facebook, or MeWe.

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