At the studio’s Hall H presentation on Saturday (July 14), Marvel Studios officially confirmed that “Guardians of the Galaxy” is on its way to the big screen with a release date of August 1, 2014. The cast lineup includes Drax the Destroyer, Rocket Raccoon, Gamorra, Groot and Star Lord. If you’re not familiar with these characters, we strongly encourage you to check out our “Guardians of the Galaxy” primer.
That’s far from the only announcement made at the panel, however. Also part of Marvel’s Phase Two lineup are sequels to “Thor” and “Captain America,” debuting in November 2013 and April 2014 respectively. But rather than getting standard numerical sequel titles, the Chris Hemsworth and Chris Evans-starring superhero flicks have been dubbed “Thor: The Dark World” and “Captain America: The Winter Soldier.” In the case of “Captain America” in particular, the subtitle strongly suggests that the sequel will see the return of Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes — albeit a much darker Bucky than fans remember.
Following those announcements, Marvel rolled out footage from “Iron Man 3″ that confirmed the identity of Sir Ben Kingsley’s character. Kingsley has long been rumored to play the Mandarin, the mystical villain who stands out as Tony Stark’s most notable nemesis in the comic books. Those rumors have panned out as expected, and Kingsley will indeed don the nine rings and flowing robes as Stark’s greatest enemy.
Perhaps just as exciting as all of the confirmed news is this: Edgar Wright, long attached to an “Ant-Man” movie, appeared on the Hall H stage to unveil previously reported test footage from his planned Marvel adaptation. The footage reportedly features Ant-Man engaging two enemies in battle, oscillating between impossibly small and large heights to disorient his opponents. Though the film’s actual release remains uncertain, all accounts suggest that the “Ant-Man” footage was a massive success.
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