On Tuesday, news came out that Fox was reshuffling its schedule, moving "X-Men: Dark Phoenix" three months from late 2018 to early 2019, and pushing "X-Men" spinoff "The New Mutants" six months from early 2018 to summer 2019.
The delays were not explained, but Collider jumped in with some details.
When it comes to "Dark Phoenix," Collider's sources said there was a test screening -- very normal -- to see what was working and what could be tweaked with "additional photography," aka reshoots.
However, the "Dark Phoenix" cast includes a lot of heavy hitters -- Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Sophie Turner, Nicholas Hoult, Alexandra Shipp, and Tye Sheridan -- among others. Getting that many in-demand stars together requires some tricky logistics. According to Collider's source, the earliest everyone could return was August or September of this year, which would be too quick a turnaround for the original November 2018 release date.
Over at The Hollywood Reporter, they added that "Dark Phoenix" reshoots are focused on the third act:
"The movie was in post-production and insiders say it had come in slightly under-budget. But sources say that the third act will need some reworking, thus some reshoots.
The extent of the new material isn't known as Simon Kinberg, the X-Men franchise writer-producer who is making his directorial debut with Dark Phoenix, has yet to pen anything. But one insider expects the shoot to cost under $10 million and to take place in late summer/early fall."
THR's sources also said the new February release date gives "Dark Phoenix" its own opening away from the November studio tentpole movies. February used to be a dead zone, but not after "Deadpool" and "Black Panther."
So the "Dark Phoenix" delay doesn't sound like a big deal.
Now on to "The New Mutants," which stars Anya Taylor-Joy, Maisie Williams, Henry Zaga, Blu Hunt, Charlie Heaton, and Alice Braga. This one was already delayed before. It was originally set to premiere this April, and that led to the idea of reshoots to make the movie scarier and add a new character.
Collider said that's still true, and even though the film tested well it was not considered "scary" enough. Fox reportedly wants the film to stand out with its own tone, a la "Logan" and "Deadpool." (Director Josh Boone was reportedly happy with the cut he had released.)
So now Fox wants more substantial reshoots; "at least 50% of the movie may be reshot," Collider reports, "and they're adding one or two new characters who will be present throughout the entirety of the film—this isn't simply adding a cameo. Moreover, Boone has been having some creative differences with the studio over the requested changes to the movie, so the reasons for the 'New Mutants' delay are more complex than why Dark Phoenix is being pushed."
Both "X-Men" films star "Game of Thrones" actresses that will hopefully still be filming that final season until at least this June. That may play a part in the reshoots planning, along with the other stars' scheduling conflicts -- like Charlie Heaton for "Stranger Things" Season 3.
Entertainment Weekly already gave "Dark Phoenix" a cover spread with some cool details and photos, so we'll have to wait and see if those scenes survive into the final cut.
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