Marvel Studios has reshuffled the release dates for its slate of television shows.
What If…? Echo, and Agatha: Coven of Chaos, now titled Agatha: Darkhold Diaries, are among the titles receiving new dates. The move comes amid Hollywood’s strikes as well as a general pullback at Disney+.
The writers strike began May 2 while the actors went on strike July 14, significantly impacting production and development. At the same time, sources say Marvel wants to focus its efforts to make each title an event for fans and audiences. The studio has decided that spreading out its content is a more prudent strategy.
It’s a far cry from last year’s San Diego Comic-Con, when Marvel unveiled plans for Phase 5 and Phase 6 of its movies and television shows. 2023 particularly heavy with shows, with five planned. (Only the spring’s Secret Invasion, October’s Loki and as The Hollywood Reporter can reveal, What If…? season two remain of that plan for this year.)
THR poked around the Marvel scheduling changes and here’s what sources say is the new rundown:
As previously announced, Loki season two will be the only show to hit this fall, debuting on Disney+ on Oct. 6. Expectations remain high for the Tom Hiddleston-Owen Wilson-fronted series that centers on alternate timelines. The season two trailer had the biggest digital debut of a trailer for any Disney+ series, and season one remains the most-watched Marvel series on Disney+.
The second season of Emmy-winning animated series What If…? will debut around Christmas Day, although it should be noted the animated show is not a holiday-themed series. Like the namesake comic on which its premise is based, What If…? is an anthology series that looks at key moments in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and how they would look in different timelines. Jeffrey Wright returns as the voice of the Watcher, the alien narrator. What If…? was originally slated for an early 2023 release.
Echo, a spin-off from last year’s hit Hawkeye, was originally announced for Nov. 29 but has now shifted to January 2024. The series stars Alaqua Cox as a one-time head of a criminal organization who returns to her hometown in Oklahoma to come to terms with her past. The series, which centers on a character who is deaf and of Native American descent, is described as having a grittier and more grounded tone than some of the other Marvel series and will feature appearances by Daredevil and villain The Kingpin. As previously announced, all the episodes will drop at the same time.
Next on the schedule will be X-Men ’97, the animated series that acts as a spiritual and tonal continuation of the classic 1990s series that aired on Fox. The series, first announced in 2021, was originally planned for a fall 2023 debut but will now premiere in early 2024 The show is being described, by sources who have seen it, as retro and a love letter to the original. A season two remains in the works.
Agatha, the WandaVision spinoff starring Kathryn Hahn, was originally announced for a winter 2023 release has been pushed back to early fall 2024, where it will serve as a lead-up to the Halloween holiday. The show, which completed its filming before the strikes, was previously titled Agatha: House of Harkness and then Agatha: Coven of Chaos before falling on its currently name, Agatha: Darkhold Diaries.
Ironheart, a show focused on genius-inventor Riri Williams (Dominique Thorne) first introduced in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, was to have dropped this fall but that is now off the schedule. It finished shooting but its completion is affected by the strikes.
Daredevil: Born Again, a continuation of the Netflix series in the MCU, was expected to debut in spring 2024, paused in mid-production amid the strikes. Wonder Man, starring Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, was also paused in mid-production.
It is unclear where on the calendar the three series will end up.
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