Monday, June 24, 2019

Marvel News

The Black Widow costume designer posted an image from Budapest (echoed, subsequently, by actress Florence Pugh) where they are currently filming. This suggests we are going to get an explanation for the banter between she and Hawkeye from the Avengers (or, at least, revisiting the location for some reason). This suggests the film contains at least some scenes that are pre-Avengers (it's not clear when Budapest took place in the MCU; the seemingly debunked 2006 theory holds up better than Conrad's of Y2K, for whatever that's worth). Kevin Feige reinforced the idea that it's fully a prequel by comparing the film to Better Call Saul (the Breaking Bad prequel series). I remain concerned about the movie lacking stakes--bogged down in the trivia of answering questions that don't need answering--but judgement is reserved until we hear more. I do think Marvel is going to have to work harder to sell this movie than it did for Captain Marvel (whose obvious tie-in to Endgame with a brand new character gave it stakes). I get the feeling Feige was a bit unprepared for the indifference people have towards prequels like this (given how hard he's pushing for its relevance right now), although if they give it enough ties into the MCU-present that will overcome some of the objections.

Variety reports Ray Winstone has been added to the cast, although they couldn't confirm what his role is (if the leaked cast list is correct, I'd guess he's the 50-60 year old male Caucasian, which doesn't tell us much).

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While on the press junket for Far From Home, Feige was asked about plans for the Fantastic Four and X-Men and said:
"Yeah, maybe. You know, oftentimes it just comes down to a specific character in a specific story and a specific way to introduce them. So sometimes, like with Spider-Man and Black Panther, that made sense. Then, other times, with characters like Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Thor, Doctor Strange, Ant-Man... it's fun to introduce them in their own movies first. So it just depends on the story we're trying to tell. It's still early days, but it's been a fun exercise, and it's one, by the way, that we've been doing for years. Every development meeting starts with cool ideas and fun ideas, and our wheels are always turning in terms of what if... to use a Marvel publishing term. What if we did this? What if we did that? What if we had access to such and such characters? That's how Spider-Man: Homecoming came together in the first place, and it's fun to now be in this position with the Fox characters, too, because if we come up with a great "What If" we can actually do it. It's great to [finally] have what most companies that hold a lot of intellectual property have, and it's access to all those characters. We were one of the few companies that has a lot of characters but didn't have access to a whole bunch of them, and now that we do, it's wonderful. They're back in the sandbox, in the toy chest, and now as ideas come up and as opportunities come up, we can utilize them, which feels really nice."
This confirms what we heard around the time of the Sony deal for Spider-Man: that Marvel has plans for returning IP--discussing them and preparing spec scripts.

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During the press junket Feige confirmed they continue to talk to Keanu Reeves--that casting him is about finding the right fit for him (this suggests the 4chan leak from early/mid-May is at least correct in spirit--we know he was up for Jude Law's role in Captain Marvel, which, given how ephemeral it was, I think would have been a waste). Feige also said it would be fun to see Donnie Yen and Millie Bobby Brown in the MCU, but that nothing specific was on the table for them. Unlike most people, I'm not sold on Brown as an actress (I don't think she's been asked to do much in Stranger Things; I'd be more excited by It actress Sophia Lillis), but I understand the excitement.

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One of the other things to come out of Feige's comments were some clickbait headlines proclaiming that he wants or had confirmed an MCU-Venom crossover. Here's what he actually said:
[Q: will Venom ever crossover with Spider-Man] "I think probably it's up to Sony. Sony has both those characters and, has Venom in their world. I don't know what their plans are for another Venom [movie] or if they’re doing that. But it seems likely at some point."
This could not be more innocuous--Feige simply confirming that both characters are owned by Sony, so it's their decision for a crossover and that he doesn't know if they are making another Venom film. That's it. He clearly says Venom is in their (ie, Sony's) world, so such a crossover would be in the Sony-verse, not the MCU (Conrad shares this opinion).

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The untested (for me) source Lords of the Long Box (LotLB) put up a video and I want to comb through their speculation (both to assess it and to track their accuracy going forward); let's note that their insider source is dubbed "The Black Knight" (for whatever that's worth):
  • FF and X-Men will be announced at SDCC, but without dates attached (I find this an odd prediction--"Remember how we said it would happen sometime? Well we're proud to confirm that it's going to happen sometime!")
  • David Harbour's character in Black Widow is Ben Grimm (The Thing) before his transformation--given the rights situation with Fox when the script was written that seems unlikely, although I suppose the character could have had a pseudonym until the rights were reacquired (March 20th; Harbour was reported to have signed two weeks later). Is this even possible? Maybe, but it seems like a stretch
  • A Nova film is coming (the Richard Ryder version)--this echoes longstanding rumours (the most recent from 4chan in May, which said it was in active development)
  • An A-Force film is coming (ABC's cancellation of a series of the same name, link above, could be seen as a hint of that); I'm not entirely sure how this would work (the male characters are all on vacation?), but it's possible
  • Modok is the villain for Captain Marvel 2 (something that seems impossible given that he's getting an animated series on Hulu)
  • Avengers 5 is Avengers vs X-Men (this is very difficult to imagine with a no date for an introductory X-Men film)--the idea in general, in the future, would be fun (shades of Civil War)
  • Speculation from them: Norman Osborn won't be the MCU main antagonist because Marvel doesn't own him--this seems likely, despite the 4chan/GWW rumours to the contrary
  • Speculation: the acquisition of the Fox IP has pushed Marvel away from making a Thunderbolts or Dark Avengers film (they imply that Feige isn't a fan of villain teams, but without a source for that it's difficult to accept)
  • Dwayne Johnson is negotiating to play Namor (in solo films)--this would require Universal's cooperation, so I doubt that, although given that Johnson is the one talking about his potential MCU-involvement (via an Instagram post) he may well be up for something; the idea of the role being attached to him ultimately comes from Movie Hole, who say Marvel has floated the idea to him; for trivia fans there's a 2011 fan trailer of him as Namor; incidentally, Marvel doesn't let their actors perform in DC-movies, so if we ever do get Johnson, that's presumably the end of his Black Adam deal
  • Venom will be in Spider-Man 3 (for the problems with this see above)--I think this only happens if Sony doesn't renew their deal with Marvel
  • Angela is going to be Thor 4, which seems like an odd decision because the sister part of her character was folded into Hela, but given the multiverse she could still be related to him in some sense; the franchise logic here, if there is any, would be to address the failure to have Natalie Portman become female-Thor (along with the lack of traction for Sif and Valkyrie to do the same)--Angela could be the character that let's them do the unworthy Thor storyline; I don't think she'd echo her iconic design, however (the skimpy outfit)
It's important to keep in mind these guys use their platform to push comicbook sales, so they seem to have a vested interest in the kinds of scoops they share (tying in scoops with issues people should buy). In their previous video they suggested the second X-Men film will focus on the Savage Land (a possibility I discussed last year), and the third on the villain Arcade. After this they Tweeted that two characters associated with the X-Men would appear in Black Widow (see the issues with Ben Grimm raised above).

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Speaking of sources, I've always wondered about the eclectic way Armin (ComicBookCast2) puts out his videos. The guy's fecundity on the platform is legendary, but so often he'll comment on rumours long after they original crop up and I wondered why that was. He was recently talking about the Inhumans, about whom the last time there was news was December (that's when Adam McKay admitted he'd pitched a film idea to Kevin Feige)--so why on earth was Armin talking about them now? I went through his archive and he'd discussed it at the time, so why again? Turns out We Got This Covered (usually a terrible source for news) floated a story about internal talks about the franchise and this was picked up by Screen Geek. I have no idea which source Armin used (probably the later), but I've always had the feeling he searches Google for anything Marvel and rolls with it. As for the Inhumans-idea itself: I'd be shocked if a film was seriously being considered.

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One thing that my deep dive on Armin did was expose me to another purported scoopmeister, a Redditor known as TheMarvelScoopMaster (I actually discussed one of his threads not long ago without realizing he's a supposed major leaker). He has a comment about Jeremy Conrad that fits my experience with him:
I've dealt with Jeremy in the past. He's wrong most times and my impression is that he's a guy that rarely thinks things through before he just sends out a tweet.
Let's go through some other comments he's made on Reddit so that we can keep them in mind going forward:
  • Guardians 3 will begin filming in February, 2020 (the THR story that said it was filming in 2020 did not specify when)
  • He claims Thor 4 won't come until 2023, but that Thor will pop up in other films before then to keep him 'present' in the universe (this is the only speculation I've seen on a date)
  • Nova is further along than Thor 4, but both are at a fairly nebulous stage; Nova will appear in Guardians 3 (the only speculation I've seen is from 4chan saying that Nova is in active development)
  • The Ant-Man characters will be used as supporting elements in other films (so no Ant-Man 3, which matches what we're hearing and what I've been speculating since Ant-Man and the Wasp hit theaters)
  • Disney is releasing New Mutants because even if it bombs whatever it makes is pure profit for them (this reasoning would match why they put out Dark Phoenix)
  • Black Widow takes place before Iron Man 2 in 2005ish and that the intention is to pass the torch to the Florence Pugh version of the character (my problem with this idea is Pugh's age--although they could use the Winter Soldier freezing technology to maintain it); he also claims the film is about Natasha joining SHIELD, which doesn't interest me at all (but it does fit rumours)
  • The idea is for Black Widow to begin a trilogy that will star Pugh in the sequels (something I haven't heard before, but Marvel does like its character trilogies)
  • David Callaham's initial script for Shang-Chi lacked humour and the usual MCU-references (he describes it as "dull"), so another writer was brought in to spruce it up (news I haven't heard elsewhere, but would fit what happened to Jac Schaeffer's initial Black Widow script)
  • Claims that Avi Arad owns the rights to Namor (and Amy Pascal to Spider-Man), and that Marvel wants Namor in Black Panther 2 (if this is correct I believe these rights are separate from distribution deals; I've heard neither of these tidbits about the rights previously (which I discuss here), although I (and others) have speculated he might appear in BP2); if true I'm puzzled that Pascal's various Spidey spinoff films haven't happened--her Silver & Black was cancelled and Silk hasn't had any movement whatsoever
  • No Venom/Spider-Man crossover
  • No X-Men/FF for at least five years (his assumption is based on 3 films a year vs their backlog of projects); separately he said "Marvel operates on a hard 3-4 year plan" (which sounds like a much more realistic timeframe and echoes what we've heard from Feige and 4chan)
  • Captain Marvel 2 will take place about 3 years after the first film (so 1998); the script he claims to have seen also includes Korvacs as the villain, whom the Kree are working for (he is, it seems, the primary source for the Korvacs rumour)
  • The plan is to have Norman Osborn be the earthly major antagonist (again, matching prior rumours)
Unlike some of the LotLB stuff above, most of this matches various rumours I've heard before. This doesn't ensure he's reliable, just that his rumours fits the trends.

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Marvel News

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THS is reporting that Ludi Lin (Power Rangers etc) and Ross Butler (13 Reasons Why etc) are on the shortlist to play Shang-Chi. Donnie Yen (Rogue One etc) is also being sought to join the production (to me he seems like a slamdunk unless he passes on it). There are two things I have to add to this brief bit of news.

First, I have to correct an error I made some time ago (I've gone back and corrected it in the archives as soon as I realized it). I was conflating Charles Villanueva's scoop about when filming will begin for Shang-Chi with the rumoured Eternals start date--ie, I was thinking Shang-Chi was filming in August. However, Villanueva clearly said the fall for Shang-Chi while the original Australian scoop from The Sydney Morning Herald doesn't specify when it will occur. Given that, THS' notion of a November start is plausible and fits with what we've heard thus far (it also explains why Shang-Chi is so far behind The Eternals in the casting process).

The second thing to clarify is who is responsible for this scoop. This tangled web arose and was solved on Twitter via a back and forth between Charles Murphy (of THS) and whoever runs the Lords of the Long Box Twitter feed. To make a long story short, here's what seems to have occurred:
  • 1) May 29th: Daniel RPK told Murphy in private DMs that Marvel wanted Donnie Yen in the film (this isn't difficult to speculate, but the implication is that Daniel had a source)
  • 2) May 29th: LotLB put out a Youtube video where they say Keanu Reeves is in negotiations with Marvel to play either Adam Warlock (!) in Guardians 3 or the Silver Surfer (in what I don't know)--there was a 4chan rumour about Keanu weeks earlier (for The Eternals, which was parroted by Jeremy Conrad June 1st), but that seems unrelated
  • 2) May 30th: Murphy exchanges private DMs with LofLB discussing Marvel matters (including that Kevin Feige likes the Savage Land, including Shanna the She-Devil, who I discussed back in October; they do not seem to have discussed Shang-Chi)
  • 3) June 4th: LofLB say in a Youtube video that Yen was in negotiations to play the Mandarin
  • 4) June 17th: Murphy comes out with the scoop above
  • 5) June 17th: LofLB asks for attribution; Murphy responds that he didn't get the information from them
This disagreement simmered down on Twitter fairly quickly, thankfully. What I think occurred is that each got their information separately, but LotLB had no way to know Murphy had access to the info from elsewhere and assumed (because he was watching their videos) that he'd picked up the info from them on the 4th (a natural enough assumption--there are definitely those who cover Marvel who don't attribute sources--Armin is probably the most notorious). Murphy's denials upset LotLB, who then got dog-piled by defenders of a more prominent figure (with egregious behaviour from someone at GWW--I assume that person is young and can learn and can grow from the experience). The confusion of what occurred was cleared up when Murphy posted the DMs with Daniel and I think we can accept that both parties arrived at this information on their own and move on with our lives.

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One of the rumours (via GWW) floating around is based on this casting exclusive from them:
“The Benefactor.” All that is known about the character is that he is a “mysterious and nefarious benefactor.” The studio is searching for a male actor, preferably Caucasian, in their 40s to 60s. The actor will shoot their scene sometime this year in Atlanta.
Inexplicably GWW claims this is Norman Osborn (!), even though Far From Home is a finished film and didn't shoot in Atlanta. If the casting scoop is real, what's indicative is which upcoming film (Black Widow, The Eternals, or Shang-Chi) is shooting there. The former is, as far as we know, primarily shooting in the UK at Pinewood Studios--given that it's already filming, such late casting seems improbable; if we believe Villanueva's scoop (and I do), that Shang-Chi is shooting in Australia, that only leaves The Eternals for this character to slot into (not appropriate for Osborn). The leaked (and likely dated) cast list doesn't clear up who this could be at all, so we'll have to wait and see--there's also a chance this character is destined for Disney+.

Mindy Kaling said she'd talked to Marvel about Ms. Marvel, but in the hubbub around those comments she clarified that she's unaware of any active production of the property (something I don't think she could admit too even if she did know). If this is a Disney+ show (as seems likely) I wouldn't expect it to arrive any sooner than 2021 (given the much further ahead Falcon and Winter Soldier won't debut until August, 2020).

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I've been saying since September that a third Ant-Man film was in jeopardy and our only rumour about a future film (via 4chan in May) was that it was being discussed, but not in active production. This rumour seems to confirmed by Paul Rudd encouraging fans to petition Marvel to make another Ant-Man. I suspect that we simply won't get a third film--that the franchise isn't profitable enough--but that the characters will be folded into other projects. I also believe this means Peyton Reed won't be getting any MCU projects on film (which is one of the reasons I rejected Conrad's Fantastic Four rumour). I suspect that Emma Fuhrmann's Cassie Lang is safe from a franchise purge because that character is likely attached to New/Young Avengers plans (or, perhaps, something on Disney+).

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I was thinking about the MCU's struggles with romances in their films. This common element in most stories is something I think they've had problems with. Let's go over those depicted (I listed the movies where they occur; those in square brackets are when they are either simply referenced or the appearance of the love-interest is an unrelated cameo or otherwise ephemeral; I also excluded Doctor Strange because that's a post-romance relationship, as well as cut out pre-established relationships like Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne):
  • Tony Stark-Pepper Potts (Iron Man 1-2, Avengers, Iron Man 3, [Ultron, Civil War], Homecoming, Infinity War, Endgame) - this works very well; it's built slowly and evolves naturally; it's also the only romance that has functioned properly through the hands of multiple writers
  • Bruce Banner-Betty Ross (Incredible Hulk) - like the film it comes from this is poorly and weakly done; Betty is abandoned hereafter (even though her father returns in Civil War eight years later)--with two excellent actors the issues are the writing (Zak Penn), directing (Louis Leterrier), and the god awful editing of the film (Rich Shaine, Vincent Tabaillon, and John Wright)
  • Thor-Jane Foster (Thor, Dark World. [Ultron, Ragnarok, Endgame]) - there's no chemistry at all between Hemsworth and Portman, with the latter mailing in her performance in Dark World
  • Steve Rogers-Peggy Carter (Captain America, Winter Soldier, Ultron, Civil War, Endgame) - it worked so well in the first film that it ruined all other attempts to give Cap a new romance
  • Steve Rogers-{Ashley Johnson} (Avengers) - the waitress romance was cut out of Avengers completely, so clearly Joss Whedon (or Marvel) didn't think it worked; this was, I think, the only time a romance could have been established to transition Cap away from Peggy
  • Thor-Sif (Dark World) - I thought the attempt to have Sif pining for Thor in Dark World was moderately effective, but Sif is never given enough screen time for this to have weight
  • Steve Rogers-Sharon Carter (Winter Soldier, Civil War) - audience reaction (the creep factor) killed this off (she was cut from an early version of Infinity War)--I thought it was moderately effective in terms of performance/build-up, but the chemistry was not as strong as with Peggy (in part, perhaps, because Sharon has less depth as a character)
  • Bruce Banner-Natalie Romanov (Ultron) - audiences did not respond to this and it feels rushed; the MCU immediately backed away from it
  • Peter Quill-Gamora (Guardians 1-2, Infinity War, Endgame) - I didn't care for this in the Guardians films--it felt hollow and stereotypical--although it gained some gravitas in Infinity War (due to better writing from Markus & McFeely)
  • Vision-Wanda Maximov (Ultron, Civil War, Infinity War) - brief as this is, it works
  • Scott Lang-Hope Van Dyne (Ant-Man, Ant-Man and the Wasp, [Endgame]) - this is...fine--average--it works, even if it's very tacked-on, but it's not made particularly important in either film
  • Peter Parker-Liz Toomes (Homecoming) - this is very weak and generic; intentionally so, I believe, since Michelle is meant to be the throughline for Peter Parker
  • Valkyrie-{Random Valkyrie} - the first depicted LGBT romance was shot for Ragnarok, but cut from the film (likely because it comes across as superfluous for what is a fairly shallow character)
  • T'Challa-Nakia (Black Panther) - this is very well done; for a minor character Nakia's writing is particularly good (unlike, for example, Sharon Carter, Nakia seems to have a life going on that's independent of a romance with T'Challa)
One of the problems Marvel had in the beginning is that the romances they had access too weren't particularly interesting in the comics (Pepper, Betty, Peggy)--women largely defined by their romances rather than their own inner lives. As the MCU marched on the problems became more about not wanting to spend enough time on growing the romance--Nat and Bruce, Peter and Gamora, and Peter and Liz are all rushed; Vision and Wanda are also rushed, but Markus & McFeely wisely let a lot of real world time and movie time pass before they become partners and I think that helps.

With the purchase of the Fox IP (and the return of the Netflix IP--undoubtedly to be buried in an unmarked Loeb-universe grave), the MCU is getting back some classic romances (including some unrequited ones) and I'll be curious if they will give themselves the time to make them work. Far From Home has a lot of work to do to make the Michelle-Peter romance function the way its supposed too--if it doesn't work, you lose out on the heart of that film.

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)

Monday, June 10, 2019

Marvel News

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I was mostly alone (other than Captain Midnight) over the past year proclaiming that Disney wouldn't release Dark Phoenix to avoid damaging the brand going forward. Clearly that's not the case, but the final Fox X-Men film (that's what people keep saying--I don't know what that portends for New Mutants) has landed with an atrocious RT score (24% at last check). This is not unexpected--the film had been repeatedly described as a mess--so why release it? It could be the conventional argument--to make back some of its budget (it badly missed it's weak 50-55 million domestic projection with just 33 million, making it by far the worst opening for a Fox Marvel film). I wonder if Disney wants it to bomb--for the public to be sick of the Fox version and clamoring (even more so) for a reboot. The fact that it's apparently this bad actually opens to door to trying the "Dark Phoenix" storyline again (albeit, a long way down the line).

You also have to wonder if this catastrophic reception is going to change Disney's mind about releasing New Mutants next year. Could Dark Phoenix bomb so badly that Marvel won't release Fox's final lame duck production as currently intended (especially one that badly needs reshoots)?

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Geeks WorldWide (who I've never heard of) put up a cast listing for the Marvel film occurring in Australia (generally thought to be Shang-Chi):
  • A “wise, old statesman,” who is “the leader of his people.” The studio is searching for an Asian actor between the ages of 40 & 60.
  • “One of the leader’s most skilled warriors.” The studio is searching for a female Asian actress, in her 30s or 40s.
Speculation has the former role as the Mandarin, but I'm less sure of that (would you really want a 60-year old Mandarin?). The only guess I've seen for the latter role is Fah Lo Suee, who is Shang-Chi's half-sister. It's well past time for casting news to leak given that filming begins in the fall, so I expect more out shortly.

Conrad is still pushing hard for Black Widow to be set in the 1990s and will involve Y2K. While such a film would have no stakes whatsoever, until we know more it can't simply be dismissed--what would be achieved by such a film I have no idea, unless the 90s are simply a flashback. One of my problems with this idea is that we don't see any signs of de-aging Scarlett Johansson who, while she can certainly pass for much younger, at 34 can't hope to look like a teenager (which is what she'd be in the 90s).

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Discussing Film is claiming Doctor Strange 2 will begin filming in January, 2020, information that seems to comes from Production Weekly (a very hit & miss source). The idea echoes what Benedict Wong said recently:
"I know they’ve now got a writer on board who I met at the Endgame premiere. So I think that may be happening some time next year."

Wong is not a good source for this kind of information, but the 2020 filming fits expectations.

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Speaking of GWW, they and others are broadcasting a rumour Jeremy Conrad started that Marvel is aiming for a 2022 release for their Fantastic Four film. This is plausible, although would run contrary to comments made by Kevin Feige that we have a five year wait--note that Feige specifically said the X-Men when talking about the Fox IP, but the implication was a wait for FF as well (he's talked about a five-year plan excluding the purchased IP). Feige is, however, an unreliable source at times and his comments leave plenty of wiggle room.

Do I think Conrad has a source for this, or is he simply engaging in speculation? It's vague enough that it's hard to tell--his only specific is the year and that would be easy to walk back if it's incorrect. A lot of people are floating Peyton Reed (and the story idea he pitched to Fox years ago) as the potential director, but while I think Reed would want the job, I believe Marvel would pass after the anemic box office of both his Ant-Man films. Some have talked about the film taking place in the 1960s (Reed's idea) and I dislike it for many reasons, but on a meta-level the MCU has avoided the substance of the early days of Marvel almost completely (only borrowing its aesthetic from time-to-time, but running away from its stories and characters--look at Spider-Man, Captain Marvel, etc).

Subsequently Roger Wardell debunked the idea and, given he and Conrad's respective track records, I believe him (more about Wardell below).

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There's a Reddit thread floating around claiming to know the current plot for Captain Marvel 2 and while there's nothing to suggest this is authentic, I wanted to briefly look at it:
The film will take place between Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame. [It] will involve the Kree once again and the Skrulls, and focus on their conflict. Carol learns of a 'superweapon' and goes on a search for it, only to realize it's Korvac. She sympathizes with him; her and Korvac bond over being guinea pigs for the Kree basically. So when he betrays her and turns heel she's left devastated. They fight it out, with Carol actually trying to protect the Kree from Korvac, and he's defeated but scurries away.
It's difficult to express how underwhelming this is. It's in the past, so there are no stakes, involves Carol being betrayed (just like she was in her first film), and echoes the exact same conflict from that movie (Skrull vs Kree). I don't buy this as the plot they go forward with--it would be, with a fresh coat of paint, Captain Marvel done over again. The Redditor believes Korvac is going to be one of the big bad's going forward, but as an little known villain I highly doubt it.

Marvel has been talking to Mindy Kaling about Ms. Marvel and I agree with Kaling that it's probably best to cast an unknown in the role and that it's headed for Disney+ (the latter idea fits what we've heard from Wardell about the property back in December).

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Executive VP at Marvel Victoria Alonso added a little fuel to the fire for a Lady Sif project (on Disney+ presumably) saying: "We love Sif the character as we do our actress, Jaimie Alexander." It's difficult to know what they like about Sif, since the Thor-films did nothing with her other than unrequited romantic feelings (Marvel has really struggled making their romances work), but I'd be open to a show with her.

The image above was shown at a Disney investors presentation and suggests (again) that the rumours about the Loki show being a look at his past deeds (via THS and a pair of 4chan posts) is at least partially on the money (Jaws is a 1975 film). I'm mentioned before that I hate prequels, so Marvel will have to do something extraordinary with this premise to drag me in.

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I wanted to briefly go through who "Roger Wardell" is because, unlike all the other fan posters, he's not attached to a site so we don't really know who he is (the name is almost certainly a pseudonym). Let me quote CurtainCobain from Reddit about the background:
There we’re two accounts, RogerWardell and RogerWardell2. RogerWardell stopped posting regularly around 2015, prior to Age of Ultron’s release and even then, he only ever posted information rarely. RogerWardell2 popped up prior to Age of Ultron’s release and remained active for years posting all kinds of shit while the original RogerWardell account continued to tweet rarely and then vanished from Twitter completely. I followed both accounts during this time. RogerWardell’s information always ended up being legit while RogerWardell2’s information was completely fake nonsense. The fact this new RogerWardell ended up tweeting accurate information leads me to believe he is the original RogerWardell.
When RogerWardell returned to Tweeting (early December), RogerWardell2 stopped Tweeting--that account stopped the day the former started again. Anecdotally what I've heard from various people who cover Marvel is that they were familiar with the second account--the one routinely incorrect. This suggests that Wardell is not connected to the fan community--no one paid attention to him until after Endgame came out when his Tweets about it were discovered.

This article is written by Peter Levi (@eyeonthesens)