For nearly the first dozen years of its existence, Marvel Studios was known exclusively as a blockbuster movie studio as it built up the Infinity Saga. Although the team made soft attempts at expanding outside the movie on ABC and Netflix, the right resource didn't seem to be available until now with Disney+.
After an extended hiatus, Marvel Studios has a dozen confirmed movies set to release in theaters again (and that's not including entries that are a little more mutant-related). Along with this expansion, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is diving into the realm of streaming shows on Disney+ that are directly woven into the fabric of the story that precedes it.
Marvel is even starting off Phase 4 with one of these new streaming properties in WandaVision, which has premiered four of its (at least) nine episodes so far. Even though the show stars two key members of the big-screen Avengers, its creator feels Disney+ is the only place it could have called home.
JAC SCHAEFFER CAN'T IMAGINE WANDAVISION AS A MOVIE
In a recent interview with IndieWire, WandaVision showrunner and head writer Jac Schaeffer expanded on why the property was made as a Disney+ show instead of a big-screen movie. Even while making sure the show "feel(s) like a movie on its own merits," Schaeffer explains that she "can’t imagine this as a movie.":
“We were very against making a parody... I can’t imagine this as a movie because we really require the television aesthetic in order to break it. You need to feel closed in, feel the smaller aspect ratio, feel the different film qualities, lighting styles, all of that.”
Elizabeth Olsen believed that Wanda Maximoff "has a tremendous amount of guilt” as she secluded herself from the world after the finale of 'WandaVision.'
Kevin Feige explained that they had to cut Doctor Strange from the WandaVision finale because "it would have taken away from Wanda," revealing that they "didn't want the end of the show to be commoditized to go to the next movie."
Kevin Feige confirmed that a deal was finalized between Benedict Cumberbatch and Marvel to appear in the final episode of 'WandaVision.'
SCHAEFFER STANDS FIRM ON TV SHOW DECISION
This new direction for the MCU has certainly come with some skepticism after so many years of strictly sticking to movies. However, Schaeffer's confidence in this series only working as a TV show should help to reassure the Marvel fandom that this is the right call.
Schaeffer is building quite the rapport with Marvel Studios, first serving as a writer on 2019's Captain Marvel before helping write 2021's Black Widow and taking lead duties on WandaVision. In the case of WandaVision, not only is it Marvel Studios' first property to release on Disney+, it's also the first time the comic book movie mogul has attempted something that uses this sitcom-style of storytelling.
It's still unclear why Wanda is portraying her life with Vision as a sitcom, but Episode 4 started to tease how the outside world is viewing it and dealing with it as SWORD set up camp outside of Westview.
The TV dynamic surely helps add to the "closed in" feeling that Schaeffer described in her explanation. With both the story progression and recent teases, that tension seems well on its way to snapping sooner rather than later.
The TV show-style story of WandaVision will continue when Episode 5 premieres on Disney+ on Friday, February 5.