Marvel Studios Announces Delay of MCU Phase 6's First Movie

By Sam Hargrave Posted:
Marvel Studios Phase 5 & 6 characters

Marvel Studios confirmed the shift of two major upcoming movies, which will in turn delay Phase 6's first theatrical release.

Between the COVID-19 pandemic, behind-the-scenes struggles, and Hollywood strikes, Marvel Studios has faced plenty of obstacles in the Multiverse Saga

This has led to much-anticipated projects such as The Fantastic Four and the next Avengers movies being hit by multiple release date delays over recent years.

Marvel Studios Delays Phase 6's Start

The Fantastic Four, which was listed as Phase 6's first movie on the slate at San Diego Comic-Con 2022, has been delayed from May 2, 2025 to July 25, 2025.

The delay for Marvel's First Family will see the movie take the release date once reserved for Thunderbolts, which has now moved up to May 2, 2025.

In swapping the release dates of Thunderbolts and The Fantastic Four, Marvel Studios has established a running order closer to what was announced by Kevin Feige at San Diego Comic-Con 2022.

During that panel, the Marvel Studios boss dated Thunderbolts as the conclusion of Phase 5 and The Fantastic Four as the beginning of Phase 6, and this will now be the case once again after the latest shifts.

In addition, Blade will be released in November 2025 after The Fantastic Four, seemingly shifting the vampire flick into Phase 6. The movie was originally planned to fall in Phase 5 between The Marvels and Captain America 4.

The apparent Phase 6 movie releases confirmed so far can be seen below:

  • The Fantastic Four - July 25, 2025
  • Blade - November 7, 2025
  • Untitled Marvel Movie - February 13, 2026
  • Avengers: The Kang Dynasty - May 1, 2026
  • Untitled Marvel Movie - July 24, 2026
  • Untitled Marvel Movie - November 11, 2026
  • Avengers: Secret Wars - May 7, 2027

Despite being absent from the slate as it will be distributed by Sony Pictures, Tom Holland's Spider-Man 4 is expected to fall into Phase 6, with no release date confirmed at this time as the writing process continues.

Armor Wars and Shang-Chi 2 are likely candidates to slide into two of the "Untitled Marvel Movie" dates, while sequels such as Eternals 2 and Doctor Strange 3 could be options to take the third open release.

Why Was The Fantastic Four Delayed?

As Marvel Studios took longer than expected to lock down its Fantastic Four cast, in part due to the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, it became increasingly clear the MCU reboot was not going to be ready for the once-planned May 2025 release.

This was only further solidified once the studio found its Reed Richards in the ever-busy Pedro Pascal, who is expected to first fulfill his commitments to HBO's The Last of Us Season 2, which is now filming, before turning his attention to the MCU.

According to a report from Variety, The Fantastic Four will begin filming under director Matt Shakman by the summer. By contrast, Thunderbolts is expected to begin filming very soon, as actor Wyatt Russell told The Hollywood Reporter the MCU ensemble ought to "[start] up in March or April."

This ought to mean both Thunderbolts and The Fantastic Four will be able to begin filming over a year before their planned releases. So, Marvel Studios will have plenty of time to ensure quality across filming and post-production and still make 2025 release dates, as long as no major reshoots are required.

The Fantastic Four will launch Phase 6, entering the last chapter of the Multiverse Saga when it hits theaters on July 25, 2025.

- In This Article: The Fantastic Four
Release Date
July 25, 2025
- About The Author: Sam Hargrave
Sam Hargrave is the Associate Editor at The Direct. He joined the team as a gaming writer in 2020 before later expanding into writing for all areas of The Direct and taking on further responsibilities such as editorial tasks and image creation.