Starting off next year with Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, Phase 5 is already bringing incredible levels of anticipation as the Multiverse Saga continues to expand. This will be the first of about a dozen new high-profile entries to hit theaters and Disney+, with the slate currently ending as July 2024's Thunderbolts comes to the big screen.
On top of the new franchises joining the fray, Phase 5 will bring four straight sequels between winter 2023 and spring 2024 in theaters, the second of which just hit the spotlight thanks to the first trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
Additionally, with so much new material on the way, Feige recently shared his thoughts on which of these franchises is sitting at the top of the MCU hierarchy.
Which Movie Franchise Is "Peak MCU?"
During Marvel Studios' panel at CCXP 2022 in Brazil, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige took the stage to discuss Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania and its place in the MCU.
When asked what it meant to have the threequel kick off Phase 5, Feige admitted that he loves it while looking back to how the first Ant-Man movie ended Phase 2. He reminisced on Scott Lang's journey from being a criminal to saving the world, noting how he loves that "the Ant-Man franchise is now at the peak of the MCU" as Phase 5 gets underway next year:
“I love it. I said it a minute ago, that I love that these amazing people that we’ve been with now for eight years... Ant-Man ended Phase 2, and now kicking off Phase 5 in such a huge way, much like Scott Lang himself going from this petty criminal coming out of jail to see his daughter to saving the world in Endgame, I love that the Ant-Man franchise is now at the peak of the MCU and kicking off Phase 5.”
Additionally, Ant-Man 3 director Peyton Reed was asked about the pressure of opening the next phase, revealing that he's excited that the movie is "starting off Phase 5 in a big way." Reed explained that this movie is "the biggest adventure that Ant-Man and Wasp have ever gone on," teasing new places and a villain in Kang the Conqueror that's different from anything or anyone they've ever encountered:
“I did not feel any pressure until you asked me that question. Now I feel pressure. No, we’re really, really excited. We’re starting off Phase 5 in a big, big way. This is the biggest adventure that Ant-Man and Wasp have ever gone on. We’re going to some strange places and we’re encountering an antagonist who’s unlike anything they’ve ever experienced, and that includes Thanos.”
How Ant-Man Films Have Been Important to the MCU
The Ant-Man franchise unquestionably has a unique place in the history of the MCU, with the original movie ending Phase 2 and Ant-Man and the Wasp being the first project to arrive after the game changer that was Avengers: Infinity War. Now, the tiniest Avenger is in for arguably Phase 5's biggest movie as he dives headfirst into the Quantum Realm, only to come face-to-face with the Multiverse Saga's big bad in Kang the Conqueror.
For being the smallest Avenger, Paul Rudd's hero is quickly becoming one of Marvel Studios' most important heroes, which is after he formulated the plan to save half of humanity in Avengers: Endgame.
As the promotional tour for Ant-Man 3 continues following the debut of its first trailer in October 2022, fans wait to find out what makes the third movie in this franchise such an important part of the growing Multiverse Saga. But with Kevin Feige's quotes at CCXP, there should be plenty to look forward to as the Ant-family jumps into battle with Kang and everything the Quantum Realm has to offer.
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania will debut in theaters on February 17, 2023.