Disney had their big Investor Day on Thursday, and good lord did they ever dump a metric shit-ton of future content on our heads. Mostly centered around their Disney+ streaming platform, the Empire of Mouse gave us presentations on numerous shows and movies from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, FX, and even the Alien franchise (yes, they own that now, too). I mean, hell, they even officially announced ESPN/ABC’s purchase of the SEC television rights, beginning with the 2024 season (so long CBS, you will not be missed).
As excited as we all were to see new information about the characters and universes we love, the sheer amount of previews, casting confirmations, and teases for upcoming works was absolutely staggering. There’s no way to even cover all of it, to get the full scale it’s best to just watch the damn thing.
Still, as you may have noticed, we dabble in pop culture here on The Take, so let’s at least cover some highlights.
The Star Wars Universe is extended, once again
One of the more controversial things Disney did after their purchase of Lucasfilm was to announce that the extended universe (a vast amount of novels, comics, etc.) was no longer officially canon. This pissed off many a fanboy, and rightfully so, as there was some pretty dang good stuff out there.
Well, hope y’all are ready to dive back into the galaxy far, far away once again. Ten new Disney+ Lucasfilm shows were announced, plus a Rouge Squadron feature film (!!!) . Hell, they even announced a Willow show and a new Indiana Jones movie.
Perhaps the most interesting reveal was the news that Hayden Christensen will reprise his role as Darth Vader in the upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi series. Regardless of your opinion of Christensen’s performance during the prequel trilogy, the time between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope is a fertile field for storytelling.
While the Disney era of Lucasfilm has certainly ranged from excellent to craptastic, there’s still plenty of reason to be excited about the upcoming mix of live action and animated works. Of particular note are series focusing on Lando Calrissian, Cassian Andor, and Ahsoka Tano.
As long as J.J. Abrams isn’t involved, I’m game.
Kevin Feige has gone mad, and he’s taking us with him
I imagine at some point, Kevin Feige had a meeting to discuss what future Marvel works he’d like to bring to the MCU. I’d like to think it went something like this:
Some underling: “So, sir, what properties would you like to adapt?”
Feige gets up from his chair, walks over to a nearby window, and stares at the world below: “… all of them.”
“EVERYTHING. I WANT EVERYTHING.”
We got updates on stuff we already know about, like WandaVision, Loki, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier and the numerous future MCU movies that have already been announced. What If…? might actually be the most anticipated of the previously announced bunch for me, if only because the trailer looks bonkers in the most wonderful way.
We also got casting news a plenty, including the excellent choice of Christian Bale as Gorr the God Butcher in Thor: Love and Thunder. Hell, we’re even getting a Guardians of the Galaxy holiday special, which, I mean, COME ON. How can you not get excited for that? Feige announced they will not recast the role of T’Challa in the upcoming Black Panther sequel, which I like. I’m also excited to see how they delve into the world of Wakanda without our king.
But let’s get to the two heavy hitters. First, we’ll get a live action Secret Invasion series, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Ben Mendelsohn. It’s one of Marvel’s biggest crossover events in their long, storied history, and if you’re not familiar I highly suggest hitting up the Wikipedia page or your local comic shop.
However, the main event was the highly anticipated announcement that the Fantastic Four is finally coming to the MCU. We didn’t get any details, but given the failures of the two previous attempts, the excitement will be palpable for Feige and company’s crack at Marvel’s first family. With Tony Stark gone, there’s a genius-sized hole in the MCU, and Reed Richards should fill that role just fine.
Noticeably absent was any sort of X-Men related news, but there’s only so much our hearts can handle. Again, the sheer amount of information Disney dropped yesterday is just unbelievable, and you really ought to check out the presentation for yourself. One thing I know: no fan of anything Disney will be able to complain about boredom for a long, long time to come.