Kevin Feige Plays Down James Gunn’s Phase 4 MCU Influence

Feige dismissed previous comments on Gunn's influence, despite Marvel's plan to still use his Guardians 3 script.

Guardians of the Galaxy in Avengers: Infinity War

It seems Kevin Feige‘s vantage point over Phase 4 of the MCU has changed somewhat since James Gunn got the boot from Disney last year, as you’d expect. While Marvel is still planning to use Gunn’s script for Guardians Of The Galaxy 3 when it eventually goes into production, Gunn’s influence over the MCU will not spread past that film, although it’s clear that the director was once excited about having some input on Marvel’s more cosmic properties before he was summarily fired for tweets that were once again unearthed and presented as a reason he should no longer be involved in the franchise.

Indeed, a few years back, Feige appeared to have an uncertain – but slightly different – outlook.

“I think it’s a little early to know what it’s going to look like,” he told Fandango about Phase 4 in 2017. “I think things are going to look very different at that point, but I think the early discussions we’ve had with James [Gunn] about Vol. 3 and beyond with what we’ll call the ‘Cosmic Universe’ and the Guardians characters is very exciting. Which is why he signed up and we announced that even before Guardians Vol. 2 came out.”

He later added “As you know from the comics, there are so many places to go and so many more characters, and there are a few characters hinted at in the [end] tag scenes of Vol. 2. All of which could be potential to see and explore more in the new age following our big Avengers films.”

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Now, Feige says that the response to these comments put too much weight behind Gunn’s influence on Phase 4.

“[James Gunn’s] influence was Guardians. It was Guardians,” Feige explained to CinemaBlend. “It was his input on Guardians and the Avengers films, as you’ve seen in Infinity War, and on the Guardians 3 script, which we’re still using. So you’ll see that influence. I think online, sort of the notion of ‘architect across multiple cosmic things’ was slightly blown out of proportion.”

Marvel has decided not to make any big Phase 4 announcements until after the release of Spider-Man: Far From Home this summer, but we do know that an Eternals movie is in the pipeline, and the first reactions to Captain Marvel have indicated that it’s very much in the cosmic universe, so it does seem like the Phase 4 plan is still to push things in a more cosmic direction after Avengers: Endgame is done and dusted (no pun intended).

Meanwhile, Gunn has been courted by Warner Bros to field a relaunch of Suicide Squad, which will be out in 2021.

The full schedule of upcoming Marvel MCU movies can be found here.