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Exclusive: Working titles for ‘The Kang Dynasty’ and ‘Secret Wars’

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Although Phase 6 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is still a few years away, fans eagerly await news about Avengers: Kang Dynasty and Avengers: Secret Wars. The trailer for Loki Season 2, released yesterday, has only added to the excitement and speculation. 

But things are still at an impasse in Tinseltown as the AMPTP refuses to make a fair deal (or even negotiate) with the WGA and SAG-AFTRA.  Meanwhile, production is shut down for most projects because actors and writers are essential to the art. Without them, there would be no worlds to love. Because of this, Phase 6 projects, like everything else in Hollywood, will likely have shifting release dates. 

However, like Kraven, we’ve been actively on the hunt for news and updates about our favorite avenging heroes. Thanks to our sources, we have an exciting update about the working titles of these two highly anticipated Marvel films.

Secret Wars
From Marvel’s Secret Wars.

The Cosmic Circus can exclusively report that Avengers: The Kang Dynasty is using the working title Apple Pie 1, and Avengers: Secret Wars is using the working title Apple Pie 2!

Working titles and why we care

A working title is like a codename – when casting calls go out or when making deals, the codename will be used instead of the project name to help keep things quiet. This is also a big deal when it comes to things like filming. For example, ordinary folks walking around NYC might not give a second glance to a publicly posted filming permit for “Out the Kitchen.” Still, they would definitely do a double take and may even show up for the filming of Daredevil: Born Again. 

Working titles are different than LLCs. Another way to figure out what’s going on at the notoriously tight-lipped Marvel Studios is to look at the LLCs that the company creates. In US entertainment, limited liability companies (LLCs) are created to produce and make specific projects. Marvel Studios typically uses one LLC per project, so it’s a big deal when a new LLC pops up. It means Marvel is working on something new. In March, Marvel’s UK counterpart registered two new companies (the UK equivalent to an LLC) that we reported on.

That brings us back to Avengers: The Kang Dynasty with the working title of Apple Pie 1 and Avengers: Secret Wars with the working title of Apple Pie 2. Why did the Marvel powers-that-be pick those names? We have a theory, and it’s very cosmic!

It’s Carl Sagan’s universe

Working titles at Disney and Marvel can be nods to comic lore or even just in-jokes. Spreadsheet jockeys love figuring out these connections, which is part of the fun.

Apple Pie 1 & 2 were tricky titles to crack, but we think there’s a cosmic connection to Carl Sagan. Yup, that Carl Sagan, the world-famous space scientist who was more than just a brilliant mind. Sagan was also a gifted communicator who helped bring the wonders of science to the world. His 1980 television series  Cosmos: A Personal Voyage (and the companion book) is still considered one of the greatest examples of popular science communication ever made.

There is a Sagan quote from Cosmos that we think ties into the next Avengers movies and may be why they have the working titles that they do. The quote: “If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.” comes from Cosmos. What Sagan means by this is that you need to literally create the universe and all the building blocks contained therein to make something from scratch. (Cue grandma’s apple pie recipes calling for one Large Hadron Collider…)

Paul Rudd (Scott) and Jonathan Majors (Kang) in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.
Paul Rudd (Scott) and Jonathan Majors (Kang) in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. (Marvel/Disney)

Much has been written and speculated about Kang’s (Jonathan Majors) role moving forward after the events of Loki S1 and Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.  What does the variant want, after all? It seems like he seeks to build a universe from the wreckage of other universes. From scratch, so to speak. 

So many pies, so little time 

It’s important to note the numeral parts of the working title. In this case, 1 and 2.  There is another project that has nothing to do with Marvel or Disney using “Apple Pie” as a working title, and that’s Universal’s Pet Sematary prequel, Pet Sematary: Bloodlines. That movie is scheduled to come out on October 6th of this year. If you’re a fan of the Stephen King series, that movie’s working title makes sense. 

Other working titles and potential LLCs for Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars

Although Marvel is using those working titles for the next Avengers movies, it does not mean that they’re final.  Apple Pie 1 and Apple Pie 2  will likely have other secret titles. Productions frequently use a few names to refer to a project, especially if the old name makes its way into the world.  

We’ve had our theories about which of Marvel’s companies would be used to produce Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars. Given the working titles of the Avengers sequels, one of the projects will likely use From Scratch Productions, LLC. This is just speculation, of course, but the Sagan connection makes it seem like a natural fit.

The schedule will likely change, but Avengers: The Kang Dynasty is set to release in 2026, and Avengers: Secret Wars is set to release in 2027. For now, we at The Cosmic Circus will keep our eyes and ears open for news. You can join in the conversation, too, by hopping on our Discord or dropping a message to us through one of our social networks. 

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Ayla Ruby

I am a writer and interviewer based somewhere in the Alpha Quadrant. I love all things nerdy - but Star Trek and Spiderman have special places in my heart. Find me at @TulinWrites on Twitter. And visit my other website for more reviews and interviews: movieswetextedabout.com

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