IT'LL LOOK YOUNGER
The likes of Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth (and quite possibly Jeremy Renner and Mark Ruffalo) -- with their contracts ending -- are highly likely to say goodbye. We're not sure if their characters will be killed off or retired, but the MCU will definitely be looking at new faces for the next decade of films, at least.
The baton has already somewhat been passed. It's obvious Marvel Studios is ready to embrace the future, with characters like Tom Holland's Spider-Man and Emma Fuhrmann's Cassie Lang (Scott Lang's daughter) waiting in the wings. Whether it's the likes of the Champions or Young Avengers, the studio needs to connect with a new generation of young adults, teens and kids. The old guard has been around for some time, and they can always return in cameos or flashbacks, but new blood is going to be key moving forward.
Shuri's already a fan-favorite, and it's clear there's an audience who wants to see Miles Morales, Wiccan, Hulkling, Kate Bishop as Hawkeye, Kid Nova or Patriot with Cap's shield paving new chapters. The MCU has to be fresh and relevant, so such an injection is ideal to ensure the stories to come aren't boring and stuff we've seen before. When it comes to heroes, newer and younger models do have an appeal to them, and Marvel Studios does have a dynamic array of characters to choose from. It won't be an easy transition, but, speaking from experience, we know we can trust the MCU to pull this off.
IT'LL BE MORE DIVERSE
Diversity and inclusion started to gain momentum with Black Panther, but it's going to be soaring to new heights with Brie Larson's Captain Marvel. She's said to be the new face of the MCU, and as the first female superhero in its timeline, we can already see her bringing the "woman power" and inspiring women worldwide at a time where feminism should be recognized fearlessly and rewarded.
Sure, we've had Black Widow kicking butt, but rather than being a supporting player, the MCU is poised to start making women the centerpieces of narratives. Even if it's a solo film going back to Natasha's origin, another sequel with Carol decades after the '90s, focusing on Hope van Dyne as the Wasp or detailing the life of Kamala Khan, Feige and his creatives know that, after the male-heavy look of these first three phases, it's time to shift things and let the women take up more of the spotlight.
Also, with Black Panther's success, it's not just about people of color in front the camera, but behind it as well. That film has been claiming awards, getting tons of nominations and, as director Ryan Coogler wanted, it's helping to change the industry. Whether it's more Wakandan stories, diving into the adventures of Shang-Chi, Amadeus Cho, Red Wolf, Kamala or Miles, people want to see characters they can relate to. Into The Spider-Verse reminded us that heroes come in different colors and sizes, so with it also becoming financially successful and critically acclaimed, we're already expecting Phase Four to add vibrancy and really adopt a new approach to things by incorporating more heroes of color.