Kevin Feige and other Marvel creative collaborators like Joss Whedon have plotted out the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Feige told Crave Online that the storyline of the Russo Brothers new Captain America: the Winter Soldier will have a major impact on future films.
The Captain America sequel reveals that SHIELD has been secretly corrupted for years by the Nazi/terrorist group called Hydra. Apparently, SHIELD has been tainted by the influence of Hydra since their beginnings in the 1940s. By the conclusion of the film, SHIELD has collapsed and disbanded. What does this mean for future Marvel movies?
Feige tells us that in Avengers: Age of Ultron, the heroes will be operating under their own initiative, not working for SHIELD. “When they come together in the next movie it’s just them. We thought would be fun was using this to change the dynamic for The Avengers.”
Fiege also points out, “Tony Stark took over The Avengers as their backer in the comics. Did you notice the very brief glimpse of Stark Tower in The Winter Soldier? It looks different… There’s a big ‘A’ on it now.”
“I had this thought for a long time”, Feige reveals. “That the SSR defeated Hydra, brought in their scientists, brought in their weaponry; that’s what SHIELD was founded on. But what if there was more to that than meets the eye? In the Avengers, Captain America finds a Hydra helmet, Hydra weapons, and realizes that SHIELD has this whole plan Nick Fury was even aware of, of taking Hydra weapons and building them again. So I thought, ‘What if SHIELD was Hydra?'” He goes on to say, “One of the first people I ever pitched that idea to was Chris Evans, on the set, on the very last day of production of the Avengers. I said, ‘I have this idea for SHIELD.’ He said, ‘You’re blowing my mind! That’s amazing!’ I thought, ‘Well, maybe it is good. Let’s try that.’ We also got excited.”
Feige was asked how these major, unexpected events regarding SHIELD would affect the next season of Agents of SHIELD. He said, “The TV show didn’t exist when we were starting this. But they were well aware of what was happening, because I said, ‘This is what we’re doing. They haven’t been shy about talking about their connection to the Cinematic Universe, and this will be by far the biggest event that has happened for them.”
Series stars Elizabeth Henstridge and Ming-Na Wen—who play Simmons and Agent May—were interviewed by TVLine. Henstridge said, “We were in shock; and still are, honestly. We all had our theories about what might happen, because we knew there was a huge tie-in. But none of us saw this coming.” Ming-Na Wen adds, “We just kind of said, ‘Um… so what happens to our show?’”
Feige also talks about the mention of Dr. Steven Strange (subject of the planned Dr. Strange film) in the Winter Soldier. He says, “We know what it means and where we want to head with it, but we were comfortable with keeping it in there and leaving it in there because there are a few different ways to interpret it. The whole thing, what Sitwell’s saying is, this algorithm is going to predict if you’re going to become a problem for Hydra or not. So you don’t have to just be Tony Stark, actively plotting to save the world. You could be a kid whose SAT scores and whose essays have indicated that you’re going to be a problem one day. So is Stephen Strange the Sorcerer Supreme? Probably not at that point. Is he an unbelievably talented neurosurgeon who’s opinionated and kind of arrogant? Probably. That might put him on the list.”
There’s also a question about how this will affect the intended Agent Carter TV series. The proposed series will follow the exploits of Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) in the early, formative years of SHIELD in the late 1940s. How will the Hydra corruption storyline be worked into the Agent Carter show? Time will tell.