Some big shakeups on Twentieth Century Fox’s release schedule, as the studio has removed the X-Men franchise solo film Gambit while adding dates for two additional Fox/ Marvel films as well as dates for their upcoming Predator franchise reboot and Alien: Covenant.
The biggest news, of course, is that Fox has removed Gambit from its previously announced October 7, 2016 released date. Without even looking, there are probably already some fans online reacting to this news by speculating that the move is to perhaps rework the screenplay to make the film R-rated in an attempt to replicate the similarly rated Deadpool has been enjoying at the box office these past few weeks. This probably has more to do with the fact that director Doug Liman has only recently come onto the project. This could be a sign that Fox has learned the lesson from Deadpool‘s success that they should allow filmmakers some flexibility in developing their projects and allowing them to get it done right, instead of getting it done right now. Time will tell.
And while we wait for Fox to find a new date for Gambit, we can speculate as to what Marvel/X-Men films the studio could possibly be releasing on the just claimed dates of October 6, 2017 and January 12, 2018. We know that they are trying to fast track a Deadpool sequel. Since they would want to get that into theaters as soon as possible, it seems like the October 6, 2017 date would e the obvious choice. Of course, they had good luck with early in the year release of the first Deadpool, so it is possible they may be eyeing that January 12, 2018 date for the sequel.Fox has also been developing a number of other X-Men franchise spinoffs and they could be eyeing one of those dates for them as well.
Currently that October 2017 date has actor Andy Serkis’ premier as a director, The Jungle Book: Origins, slated for release while the January 2018 date is starting to get crowded with Warner Brothers’ Blade Runner sequel and Paramount/MGM’s animated Sherlock Gnomes already claiming space.
Additionally, Fox has moved up the release date for Alien: Covenant from October 6, 2017 to August 4, 2017, where it will face off against Pitch Perfect 3 and Blazing Samurai. They also announced a release date for director Shane Black’s The Predator of March 2, 2018. Currently there are no other films scheduled for that date.