After Avengers: Endgame provided a stunning conclusion to the Infinity Saga, fans have been waiting for answers on what the next phase of Marvel storytelling will look like. The MCU looks to be in the middle of an all-new Multiverse Saga – one that appears to be heading to Secret Wars – with Loki, Spider-Man: No Way Home, and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
The well-known crossover may be Marvel Comics’ most significant Multiverse event, as it saw universes fused together by incursions to form Battleworld, a realm where heroes and villains were compelled to battle for the survival of their planets. Multiverse of Madness started to set the ground for that event by introducing the notion of incursions and hinting at their importance in Doctor Strange’s next adventure.
With Secret Wars being a narrative about the Multiverse and Variants, the options for which characters and performers may arrive and return are practically limitless. But who is most likely to return for Secret Wars?
Sam Wilson’s Captain America, Anthony Mackie
Sam Wilson, like Steve Rogers before him, will soon be at the forefront of the MCU as he takes on a larger role in The Avengers going forward. It is unknown if Wilson will be the future commander of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, but he will surely play a significant part in Secret Wars.
Doctor Strange, played by Benedict Cumberbatch, has virtually supplanted Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man as the MCU’s main man. Strange is the authority on all things Multiverse, having appeared in both Multiverse of Madness and Spider-Man: No Way Home, and his knowledge will no doubt be important to the Avengers.
America Chavez Xochitl Gomez
America Chavez, a figure with strong ties to the Multiverse, first introduced in Doctor Strange 2. Strange may invite her along for the voyage to aid the Avengers, especially now that she’ll have learnt some magic at Kamar-Taj, thanks to her talents that allow her to travel throughout the Multiverse.
Shang-Chi Simu Liu
When Simu Liu’s Shang-Chi made his MCU debut in 2021, he proved to be a popular addition. Following his introduction to Avengers such as Captain Marvel and the Hulk in his post-credits sequence, the martial arts master will certainly play a crucial role in the next big crossover.
Spider-Man is played by Tom Holland.
Because of intricate rights concerns with Sony, Tom Holland’s Spider-Man doesn’t get to cross over into the MCU very frequently, but he will undoubtedly be there for an event of this magnitude. Secret Wars was the event that memorably unveiled the wall-black crawler’s suit, which may be transferred to live-action when a Symbiote crawled into the MCU in the No Way Home post-credits sequence.
Captain Marvel, Brie Larson
Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel is one of the most powerful characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as seen by her struggle against Thanos in Avengers: Endgame. The Kree hero will very certainly be one of the MCU’s Big Three heroes in the future, making his involvement in Secret Wars nearly inevitable.
Okoye – Danai Gurira
Many people were taken aback when Okoye and the Wakandans played an unexpectedly crucial role in Avengers: Infinity War, and she may do the same in Secret Wars. Rumors believe Danai Gurira’s warrior may even receive her own Disney+ series, which increases the likelihood that her MCU role will expand in the future.
Clea – Charlize Theron
Charlize Theron’s Clea, a formidable sorceress and prospective love interest for Doctor Strange, was introduced in Multiverse of Madness. Because Dormammu’s niece was the one to notify Strange to an incursion he had orchestrated, she may have a role to play in Secret Wars, an event centered on these invasions.
Loki’s end saw the God of Mischief and his Variant Sylvie accountable for the breakdown of the Multiverse, which might lead to his involvement in Secret Wars. With his most crucial atonement arc over, it will be interesting to watch how he interacts with his old Avenging adversaries as a more heroic figure.
Kang the Conqueror, played by Jonathan Majors
In terms of Loki, the Disney+ series identified Kang the Conqueror as the most dangerous threat to the Multiverse, implying that he may be the villain of the MCU’s Secret Wars adaption. Jonathan Majors’ time-traveler will be featured again in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which may provide further details about the incident.
Ant-Man, Paul Rudd
Ant-Man and his Quantum Realm knowledge played an unexpectedly vital part in Avengers: Endgame, and he will shortly embark on his next adventure in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. With the smaller sequel likely to star Kang, who may or may not be the villain of Secret Wars, Ant-Man could easily fit in.
Wasp by Evangeline Lilly
Where there’s an Ant-Man, there’s a Wasp, which means Evangeline Lilly’s prospects of returning for Secret Wars are primarily dependent on whether Paul Rudd does. The shrinking pair were two of Marvel Comics’ original Avengers, and they may be more vital to this new period of the team than they were in the first.
Thor, Chris Hemsworth
Chris Hemsworth has one of the most extensive MCU careers, and his story will shortly be continued in Thor: Love and Thunder. There’s no knowing what his future will look like until that film is out, but the Australian actor has confirmed his commitment to being in the MCU, which means he’ll most likely be in Secret Wars until he unexpectedly bids his farewell in Love and Thunder.
Hulk (Mark Ruffalo)
Like Thor, it’s unclear where the MCU will take Bruce Banner, the Hulk, following She-Hulk. The Avenger was last seen in the Shang-Chi post-credits sequence, when he offered his advice on the origin of the Ten Rings. Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner, whether as the gamma-green monster or the brightest man in the MCU, is a sure bet for Secret Wars.
Jane Foster – Natalie Portman
Thor: Love and Thunder will see Jane Foster become The Mighty Thor, a hero in her own right. Foster joined the Avengers when she became the Goddess of Thunder in the comics, implying that she may soon join Thor and his other friends for some Multiversal action.
Sylvie DiMartino – Sophia DiMartino
Just like Nebula was surprisingly important to Infinity War and Endgame because of her link to Thanos, Sylvie might do the same for Secret Wars because of her part in opening up the Multiverse. But there’s little question the Loki Variant would not be popular among her other MCU characters after she was nearly entirely responsible for the mayhem.
Bucky – Sebastian Stan
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier turned Sam Wilson become Captain America, but it left Bucky Barnes in an odd position. He has clearly finished his redemption path, yet he still seems to be the Winter Soldier – a perplexing paradigm that should be resolved in Captain America 4 before Secret Wars, when he might meet his fate after more than a decade in the MCU.
Wong, Benedict Benedict Wong
After Doctor Strange, almost no one could have predicted that Wong would make the most appearances in Phase 4. After She-Hulk, the sorcerer will have four Phase 4 appearances under his belt, positioning him as the Nick Fury of the supernatural world. With so many appearances under his belt, it would be a tragedy if the Multiverse specialist missed out on Secret Wars.
Monica Rambeau – Teyonah Parris
Monica Rambeau will soon emerge in The Marvels as WandaVision, a team-up that should solidify her heroic persona and position her as the newest member of The Avengers. According to previous reports, the Captain Marvel sequel may hint to the path of the next generation of Avengers, implying Rambeau may be a part of that future.
Ms. Marvel Iman Vellani
Ms. Marvel, like Rambeau, will shortly appear in her own Disney+ series before joining up with other heroes in The Marvels. However, there is always the possibility that Ms. Marvel may stay away from the main Avengers series in order to play a part in the Young Avengers or Champions.
Shuri (Letitia Wright)
The Black Panther will undoubtedly play a role in Secret Wars, and all indications point to Shuri succeeding T’Challa in that role. Even if she loses the mantle to another Wakandan, Shuri will undoubtedly remain as one of the most intelligent persons in the Marvel world and a significant figure in Wakanda.
M’Baku – Winston Duke
M’Baku, played by Winston Duke, has been a highly touted contender for the Black Panther mantle, making him a strong prospect for a part in Secret Wars. However, his participation in the Multiversal event is likely to be contingent on his gaining the famous heroic title in Wakanda Forever.
Steve Rogers’ Captain America is played by Chris Evans.
Chris Evans has Steve Rogers survived the events of Endgame to return to the twentieth century and spend the rest of his life with Peggy Carter, implying his resignation from the Marvel role. Since then, speculations have suggested Evans is planning a comeback to the MCU in a next film, maybe Secret Wars, as a Variant or his elder self.
Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr.
When Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man bid goodbye to the MCU with his iconic universe-saving snap, fans were astonished and upset. Many people have been wondering if or when Iron Man would return, and Secret Wars looks to be the ideal chance. But who knows whether Downey Jr. would be interested in it; maybe another actor, like as Tom Cruise, could appear as a Variant.
Scarlett Johansson in the role of Black Widow
Black Widow, like Iron Man, seems to be a foregone conclusion for a stunning return in Secret Wars. Scarlett Johansson recently sued Disney over the distribution of Black Widow on Disney+, but the two seem to have reconciled, with the actress now working as a producer on an upcoming MCU movie.
Moon Knight (Oscar Isaac)
Oscar Isaac’s Moon Knight made his MCU debut in the most solitary excursion since Iron Man, but he won’t be a solo hero for long as he joins the Avengers. One can only imagine how entertaining it would be to witness Marc Spector and Steven Grant interact with their fellow heroes, and Secret Wars may be the first time he does so.
Blade, Mahershala Ali
Blade has yet to make his first genuine debut in the MCU, which may limit his chances of participating in Secret Wars, but he has already begun to interconnect with the MCU. The vampire hunter talked to Dane Whitman in the Eternals post-credits sequence, and because he has already began developing ties outside of his franchise, there might be more on a larger scale to come.
She-Hulk, Tatiana Maslany
She-Hulk will soon enter the MCU, thanks to her upcoming Disney+ series. The gamma-infused hero already has ties to the larger world via her Avenger cousin Bruce Banner and her work as a superhero lawyer, giving her a decent possibility of interacting with other heroes in the future.
War Machine, Don Cheadle
After years of playing second fiddle to Iron Man, War Machine is now getting his own Disney+ program, Armor Wars, which might lead to him taking a more prominent position in the MCU. Rhodey has also been in every Avengers film since Age of Ultron in a small role, and Secret Wars might be the same, even with Tony Stark gone.
Scarlet Scarab – May Calamawy
Layla El-Faouly was transformed into the Scarlet Scarab in the season finale of Moon Knight, but it’s unknown what her future holds as Egypt’s heroic guardian. With so many characters to include in Secret Wars, the Egyptian hero is unlikely to be included. Layla, on the other hand, became popular with fans after her Disney+ debut.
Captain Carter is played by Hayley Atwell.
Captain Carter, played by Hayley Atwell, made the transition from animation to live-action for Multiverse of Madness, and despite being cut with the shield, there are many more Variants of her out there. Rumor has it that a Captain Carter film is in the works, signaling that Marvel Studios is interested in developing this character further in live-action.
The Galaxy’s Guardians
Most people would believe that once the Guardians of the Galaxy joined the Avengers in their fight against Thanos, they’d be a safe pick for Secret Wars. The problem is that it’s unknown what the team’s fate will be after Vol. 3, with the Guardians anticipated to be replaced with a new lineup or retired entirely after the film.
After their ensemble debut, the Eternals were scattered over the galaxy, with some kidnapped by Arishem and the others exploring the cosmos. If this cliffhanger can be addressed before Secret Wars, they may play a role comparable to the Guardians of the Galaxy in Infinity War.
Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner)
According to all reports, Hawkeye, at least as we know him, has left the MCU. By the time his Disney+ show premiered, the archer had already bid farewell to his heroic lifestyle, and by the end of the series, the torch and mantle had been passed to Kate Bishop, implying a possible step back from the universe for Jeremy Renner.
Kate Bishop – Hailee Steinfeld
When it comes to Kate Bishop, she has a somewhat better probability of appearing in Secret Wars. Unlike Clint, Kate is anticipated to continue to be a hero in the MCU, albeit her future is likely to be with the Young Avengers rather than the main squad.
Daredevil Charlie Cox
Daredevil is a street-level hero, therefore it’s difficult to see him fitting into a huge Multiverse event. Daredevil, played by Charlie Cox, has gained popularity in recent years, and there is comic precedence for Daredevil joining the Avengers, so if his series arrives before Secret Wars, he may make an appearance.
Yelena Belova – Florence Pugh
The MCU seems to be grooming Florence Pugh’s Yelena Belova to be the next Black Widow, implying she may one day be an Avenger. Yelena has a long way to go before she is totally redeemed, and given that she was last seen attempting to murder Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye, an Avenger, it’s difficult to picture her joining the team anytime soon.
Scarlet Witch, Elizabeth Olsen
Scarlet Witch is now in a perplexing position in the MCU, since Doctor Strange 2 left it unclear if she was dead or alive. In any case, Wanda may require a break from the MCU following her evil shift to prevent undermining the effect of that film, and Secret Wars may be too soon for that or the ideal occasion to bring her back.
Vision – Paul Bettany
The future of Vision in the MCU is less clear than ever after WandaVision. The Vibranium synthezoid was destroyed in Infinity War, but a rebuilt version with all of the original’s memories is currently wandering the planet, with no apparent location for him to emerge next. Because of this ambiguity, it’s hard to predict whether White Vision will ever join the Avengers.
Mobius by Owen Wilson
Given Loki and the TVA’s roles in establishing the Multiverse, Owen Wilson’s Mobius might emerge in Secret Wars. With Kang controlling over the TVA and Mobius playing an important position in the organization, a visit by him to provide knowledge to the squad is not out of the question.
Deadpool is played by Ryan Reynolds.
Secret Wars is an event in which different worlds collide, forcing the heroes of each to fight it out. If one of those realities is the Fox X-Men universe, there is a clear avenue to introduce Deadpool into the MCU and destroy that reality entirely.
Thanos (Josh Brolin)
Thanos’ MCU narrative was mostly concluded with his last fight with the Avengers in Endgame, but that doesn’t mean the character has to be gone forever. The Mad Titan has previously appeared in What If…?, his body has been discovered in Multiverse of Madness, and he is believed to come in Eternals. A Variant from another world might appear in Secret Wars.
Agatha Harkness – Kathryn Hahn
Agatha Harkness, the terrible witch from WandaVision, may seem like an unlikely candidate to appear in Secret Wars, but there is some reason to believe she will. Her magical experience should have given her some understanding of the Multiverse, and Marvel Studios evidently intends to transform her into her own protagonist, since she will soon appear in her own Disney+ series.
The Watcher, starring Jeffrey Wright
The Watcher, played by Jeffrey Wright, had his film debut in What If…?, and fans have been yearning for him to make the transition to live-action. With him being the Multiverse’s administrator, it seems to reason that he would be watching an event of the size of Secret Wars. He could even be able to offer his renowned What If…? narration during the big-screen event.
Valkyrie, Tessa Thompson
Valkyrie, as the monarch of New Asgard, should have a far more prominent position in the MCU going forward, which will become obvious after Love and Thunder. Any role she would have in Secret Wars, like in Endgame, would most likely be limited to a quick action scene, although it’s unknown how much combat she’ll be doing herself now that she’s controlling New Asgard.
Cassie Lang – Kathryn Newton
Cassie Lang is apparently important to Marvel Studios, since the original actress was just replaced with Kathryn Newton. Many predict her to be the Young Avenger Stature in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, and if she is, there’s a good possibility she’ll battle with her father in Secret Wars.
Ironheart – Dominique Thorne
Riri Williams’ Ironheart has a chance in Secret Wars, just as the other Young Avengers. She will not only star in her own Disney+ series and wear her own Iron Man-inspired outfit, but she will also meet the Wakandans in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. These relationships to prominent MCU characters might lead to her appearance in the next big team-up.
The Fantastic Four
After years of anticipation, the Fantastic Four will finally join the MCU with their own blockbuster remake, but with the picture set to be released in 2024, it may be too soon for them to interact with the rest of the MCU. Reed Richards might feature since he and Doctor Doom played a crucial part in the original Secret Wars plot, and Mr. Fantastic is also a distant relative of Kang in the comics, which could lead to some fascinating dynamics between him and the villain.
Echo by Alaqua Cox
Following her stunning performance in Hawkeye, Alaqua Cox’s Echo will soon get her own Disney+ series. Maya Lopez is a more down-to-earth street-level character, and it’s difficult to see her fitting into Secret Wars, particularly because she has no significant ties to any of the other heroes.
Dane Whitman – Kit Harington
Dane Whitman, played by Kit Harrington, will undoubtedly become a prominent character in the MCU as he transforms into the Black Knight with the aid of Blade. But, for the time being, Dane just has links to the Eternals and is, more or less, an average working guy, so he has no clear position in a huge crossover.
Namor Tenoch Huerta
Tenoch Huerta will be seen in this year’s Black Panther: Wakanda Forever as Atlantean emperor Namor. His odds of participating in Secret Wars are mostly dependent on when it is released, since it may be too soon for Namor to crossover because he will most likely require his own solo expedition before joining the Avengers.
Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson)
Despite being presented as the Avengers’ creator, Nick Fury hasn’t had anything to do with the superhero team since Age of Ultron. The Secret Invasion Disney+ series should provide a clearer sense of where the MCU will take Fury next, but Samuel L. Jackson may be prepared to leave his Marvel role.
Spider-Man, played by Tobey Maguire,
Tobey Maguire returned to his old wall-crawler character in No Way Home and was speculated to do it again in Multiverse of Madness, but that didn’t pan out. The iconic Spider-Man may return for Secret Wars, but it’s difficult to envision their being enough place for him, much alone the licensing issues with Sony.
Spider-Man, played by Andrew Garfield,
Because of the numerous vastly different Variants, Spider-Man is more famously linked with the Multiverse than any other Marvel character. With so many characters slated to appear in Secret Wars, there is unlikely to be place for more than one Spider-Man; if Maguire and Garfield return, it will most likely be for quick cameos.
After Infinity War and Endgame elevated the bar for what is anticipated from an Avengers crossover event, Marvel Studios will have a difficult challenge in matching that with Secret Wars, assuming that is really the MCU’s next major plot.
With Secret Wars being the most significant Multiverse event to emerge from Marvel Comics, there is no better plot to finish the Multiverse Saga with. But, as is customary, fans can expect Secret Wars to play out considerably differently on the big screen than it does in the comics.
Of course, Avengers 5 will be filled with characters, but like Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, viewers should moderate their expectations to prevent disappointment. The Multiverse provides several potential for cameos and surprises, but the primary goal will always be to develop a coherent tale with the main ensemble.
In addition to the main ensemble of MCU characters, there will very certainly be cameos by Variants of fan favorites, primarily portrayed by their regular actors, as fans witnessed with Benedict Cumberbatch’s four Doctor Stranges in Multiverse of Madness.
As seen in Infinity War and Endgame, some of the love interest and best buddy characters from the different series will most likely appear in the beginning and end of the film to set the setting for what the heroes were doing before. Shang-Katy, Chi’s Spider-Ned Man’s and MJ, Ant-Hank Man’s Pym and Janet Van Dyne, and others are among those who may appear.