By Todd Leopold and David Daniel
(CNN) — Marvel announced a huge slate of forthcoming films at a Tuesday news conference but left out a bit of “Strange” information fans were waiting for.
At an enthusiastic gathering at Hollywood’s El Capitan Theatre, Marvel chief Kevin Feige reeled off announcements for a new Captain America film, a “Guardians of the Galaxy” sequel and a two-part Avengers adventure. The company also plans to introduce some of its other characters on the big screen, including Black Panther, Captain Marvel and the Inhumans.
Although a “Doctor Strange” film was announced, Marvel didn’t bring out Benedict Cumberbatch, who has been widely rumored to be in negotiations to play the powerful magician.
“We’re opening up an entire new corner of the (Marvel) cinematic universe: the mystical,” Feige said.
“Doctor Strange” is scheduled for release November 4, 2016. The character was created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko and made his first appearance in Strange Tales No. 110 in 1963. He’s a former neurosurgeon who rises to become the Sorcerer Supreme and protect the planet from magical threats.
Scott Derrickson is set to direct.
“Strange” wasn’t the only film to get a spot on the Marvel calendar.
The new Captain America film, “Captain America: Civil War,” will be released May 6, 2016. A “Guardians of the Galaxy” sequel is slated for May 5, 2017, and the next Thor movie will come out in July 2017.
“Black Panther” will follow in November 2017, “Captain Marvel” in July 2018 and “The Inhumans” in November 2018.
Captain Marvel will be a female superhero, the alter ego of Carol Danvers.
In addition, Marvel announced a two-part “Avengers” film, “Avengers: Infinity War,” due in 2018 and 2019. “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” the sequel to 2012’s “The Avengers,” comes out in 2015. Its trailer has already lit up the Internet.
Feige said Marvel’s plans — and the opportunity to make a big announcement — have been the works for a while.
“We wanted to do this at Comic-Con this year, and things were not set: ‘Civil War’ wasn’t set; ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ wasn’t out yet.” he said.
“Guardians,” which came out in August, is the biggest-grossing film of the year.
Robert Downey Jr., who plays Iron Man, and Chris Evans, who plays Captain America, were on hand for the presentation, along with Chadwick Boseman, who will play Black Panther.
“I’m blessed to be a part of this Marvel universe, and I’m looking forward to making magic happen,” Boseman said. The actor portrayed Jackie Robinson in last year’s “42” and recently played James Brown in “Get On Up.”
However, Cumberbatch was a no-show.
“If it were confirmed, we would have introduced him today,” Feige said at the news conference.
Cumberbatch is currently on a hot streak. In addition to his well-received “Sherlock” series, for which he won an Emmy this year, he’s earned a great deal of Oscar buzz for his performance as cyberpioneer Alan Turing in “The Imitation Game,” a drama about World War II codebreakers.
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