Breaking news, looks like Fox is playing the old release date shuffle game again with the X-Men franchise, as Borys Kit over at THR has learned that Dark Phoenix – which just unveiled its first trailer two days ago, with its February release date attached – will be shifting into the summer instead.

The new opening date will be June 7th, 2019, which on its face looks like a show of confidence (though having seen the trailer, I don’t know how that can be), but again, this is 20th Century Fox we’re talking about…the same folks who thought a huge embargo lead on X-Men: Apocalypse reviews was a good idea (it wasn’t).

This is also the second major shift for the film, as it was originally supposed to hit theaters this November.

But according to reports, the trailer has gotten huge viewing numbers, especially in China, an ever-important marketplace for Hollywood these days, so what do I know? In the shift, Alita: Battle Angel will take Dark Phoenix‘s February 14, 2019 slot, while in a more interesting twist, the studio is apparently readying a PG-13 cut of Deadpool 2 for theaters during this year’s Christmas frame.

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This sounds to me like a trial balloon for Disney’s eventual takeover of the X-franchise, but it’s still a curious move. It’s hard to imagine audiences paying to see a softened version of the character in a film they’ve already seen, and can be watched at home at this point. But again, perhaps I’ll be proven wrong and a more family friendly “Merc with a Mouth” will rake in some bank, though its competition will be a bit fierce between Aquaman, Bumblebee, and Mary Poppins Returns.

Lastly, they’ve bumped the “still in production, we swear” Gambit to March 13, 2020. Interesting times in the final days of pre-Disney 20th Century Fox.

UPDATE:

Ryan Reynolds just tweeted out the following:

 

Yep, that is Fred Savage. Looks like we’re gonna get a new little Princess Bride-esque framing device in this newer, tamer release.

6 COMMENTS

  1. “This sounds to me like a trial balloon for Disney’s eventual takeover of the X-franchise, but it’s still a curious move.”

    There will be no R-rated movies based on Marvel characters when the Disney takeover is complete. The days when Disney released R-rated movies through its Touchstone and Miramax divisions are long gone.

  2. “The Deadpool movies are Fox, not Disney, productions.”

    The inference everybody is taking from the existence of this attempted cash-grab is that Disney is making Fox release the PG-13 edit of Deadpool to prove that Deadpool should be PG-13 and use the data as a cudgel against Reynolds to tone it down for the third movie, whether it’s DP3 or X-Force. I think that both DP fans and the larger superhero movie fanbase are seeing right through Disney’s cynical motives in trying to sabotage the franchise by forcing kid-friendliness down their throats.

  3. “You also won’t see anything as raw and violent as “Logan” when Disney takes charge.”

    Don’t be so sure. Logan was critically acclaimed and, as a direct result of its critical and financial successes, I doubt that either the casual audience or the fanbase will accept a non-R-rated Wolverine solo movie in the future. Deadpool has started as an R-rated franchise, Logan converted Wolverine into an R-rated franchise. I think that anybody at Disney/Marvel trying to wrangle the X-Books into the MCU will be in for a rude awakening if the X-Mas release is a PG-13 cut of Deadpool 2.

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