Due to behind-the-scenes difficulties, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the recent Hollywood strikes, Marvel Studios has faced plenty of difficulty across the Multiverse Saga as it paves the way to Avengers 5 and 6.
Once dated for May and November 2025, the next Avengers blockbusters now won't be coming until May 2026 and May 2027 following a series of delays.
Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania writer Jeff Loveness and Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings director Destin Daniel Cretton were once set to develop Avengers 5, but the former parted ways with the project after the backlash to his last MCU movie.
Avengers 5 Loses Director Amid MCU Troubles
According to a report from Deadline, Shang-Chi director Destin Daniel Cretton has stepped back from his directorial duties for Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and will no longer helm the 2026 MCU blockbuster.
Cretton reportedly exited the project on amicable terms to maintain focus on his other upcoming MCU projects which include Shang-Chi 2 and Disney+'s Wonder Man - on which he will executive produce and direct the first two episodes.
The Shang-Chi director was announced to be directing Avengers 5 in July 2022, but over a year later, he has now stepped back following a halt to Wonder Man's production due to the writers' and actors' strikes.
Who Will Direct Avengers 5 Now?
Following Destin Daniel Cretton's exit, one has to wonder who Marvel Studios will turn to next to take the reins for Avengers: The Kang Dynasty. And will they abandon their plans to have a separate director for Avengers: Secret Wars or unify the two Avengers blockbusters under one creative vision?
As Marvel Studios suffers through a tough time, the studio may look to return to what has worked in the past and seek out the Russo Brothers, the directors behind Infinity War and Endgame, to culminate a saga once again, even though they've denied any involvement.
Looking at some of the MCU's more recent directorial talent, Loki Season 2 filmmakers Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead may be contenders. After all, the studio has now entrusted the pair with three major Disney+ series, the latest of which even laid the groundwork for more Kang and Multiversal chaos.
The pair also recently told ComicBook they would be open to making a Marvel Studios movie based on their history with "independent feature films:"
"You know what's funny is we come from independent feature films, so we come from movies. I mean there's absolutely no telling what our future holds."
One other option could be Black Panther filmmaker Ryan Coogler, who had once been rumored to direct Secret Wars. While his focus at the time of the rumors was purely on finishing up Wakanda Forever, perhaps he may have some interest in this new Avengers vacancy, as Marvel will want a proven director on the job.
Regardless, with two-and-a-half years still to go until The Kang Dynasty, development still in the early stages, and production unlikely to begin for well over a year, the loss of Destin Daniel Cretton hopefully won't be much of a setback for the project.
Avengers: The Kang Dynasty hits theaters on May 1, 2026.