Twentieth Century Fox has punted the release dates for two installments in its X-Men superhero franchise a bit further down field.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix, which was currently scheduled to open on November 2 of this year, has been pushed back to February 14, 2019. Meanwhile, the X-Men franchise spinoff New Mutants, which had previously been pushed from an April 13, 2018 release to February 22, 2019, has now been moved back even further to August 2, 2019.
This is somewhat disappointing, considering at one point the studio had three X-Men films in line to debut this year. Now, all that is left standing in 2018 is the anticipated Deadpool 2, which opens next month. The studio still has three 2020 dates on its calendar set aside for three untitled X-Men films – March 13, June 26, and October 2 – and one 2021 date – March 5, 2021. The studio is still trying to get a spinoff film with the popular character Gambit which would star Channing Tatum greenlit. It also has a number of other X-Men related projects currently in development including one based on the character Kitty Pride, a third Deadpool film and one based on the team comic X-Force who are making their big screen debut in Deadpool 2.
There has been no word as to why Fox is moving Dark Phoenix back several months. Previous reporting had stated that the first time New Mutants had been moved was to allow time for reshoots for the project, which would have included the addition of a new character.
Set a decade after the events of X-Men: Apocalypse, Dark Phoenix is the franchise’s second attempt at telling the classic storyline “The Dark Phoenix Saga” from the comics. (The less said about the first attempt to do so, director Brett Ratner’s complete misfire that is X3: The Last Stand, the better. Fortunately, time travel shenanigans in the franchise have presumably wiped that film from continuity.) Dark Phoenix stars James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Tye Sheridan, Sophie Turner, Alexandra Shipp, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Evan Peters and Jessica Chastain.
New Mutants focuses on a group of superpowered teens who are kidnapped and held in a secret government facility. It is directed by Josh Boone and stars Anya Taylor-Joy, Maisie Williams, Charlie Heaton, Henry Zaga, Blu Hunt and Alice Braga.