Even though there's still time before Avengers: Age of Ultron hits the theatres, a lot of speculation and theories have started circulating regarding the future of Avengers post the sequel.
Iron Man star Robert Downey Jr has, in a way, declared his exit from the Marvel films by confirming that Iron Man 4 "is not in the pipeline" which effectively means Avengers 2 will be his last Marvel movie.
Chris Hemsworth (Thor) and Chris Evans (Captain America) will also be done with their three-film deal post the third instalments of their respective superhero films. So, what happens next?
Well, one theory is that Avengers 2 could set up the stage for Next Avengers, Avengers Academy, West Coast Avengers and Young Avengers.
According to a Moviepilot report, Avengers 2 could be utilised to set up more storylines and new characters.
The daughter of Tony Stark and Pepper Potts could be featured in the Next Avengers, while the Young Avengers is already rumoured to be a new franchise up for consideration by Marvel Studios.
The Avengers Academy, another comic, is about the Avengers starting an academy to train young heroes, who have dangerous powers, into valuable heroes – similar to Professor Charles X Xavier's school in X-Men.
Here's how the plot might play out, according to the report:
"After the events of Age of Ultron, the team splits up to achieve goals. Vision suggests that he, Hawkeye, Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, War Machine and Mockingbird head to the West Coast. Iron Man flies off to space to retrieve the Hulk and runs into the Guardians of the Galaxy along the way. Ms. Marvel accompanies him. Cap and Falcon resume their search for Bucky. Black Widow goes back to a new S.H.I.E.L.D," he said.
"Before this happens, they all decide to start the Avengers Academy and the blueprints are lying on the table in Avengers Tower. End credit scene could be one of the Young Avengers kids watching the news."
After the super success of Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel is in a strong place to take risks with newer or lesser known comic book characters and therefore the Avengers spinoff movies might just be the right way forward.