2018 was going to be a bumper year for X-Men fans with three very different movies hitting our screens across the year. Deadpool 2, New Mutants, and X-Men Dark Pheonix were all scheduled for release this year, but now only one of those will see the inside of a cinema in 2018 as Dark Pheonix and New Mutants have both been delayed.
Josh Boone's horror-infused New Mutants was already bumped from its original April 2018 release date earlier this year to a February 2019 launch. That's no longer the case as the Maise Williams led movie has now shifted to August 2, 2019, more than fifteen months after it was intended to be released. The cause for the delay isn't down to reshoots or production woes; the culprit is none other than X-Men: Dark Pheonix which has been moved from November 2, 2018, to February 14, 2019. No franchise is robust enough to have to different entries released in the same month. While the two movies couldn't be more different, the casual moviegoer would be forgiven for being somewhat confused.
Traditionally, February has been seen as a dumping ground for studio movies that were unlikely to find success during the crowded summer months. However, that's not strictly true anymore as Deadpool and Black Panther enjoyed blockbuster box office hauls from their respective February launches. So there's no reason to assume that Dark Pheonix's release date shuffle is a reflection of the finished film.
Dark Phonix marks the directorial debut of longtime X-Men producer/writer Simon Kinberg and he has promised a more faithful adaptation of the famed comic book arc that was butchered with X3: The Last Stand. The Dark Pheonix Saga was shoehorned into Brett Ratner's trilogy closer, and fans weren't happy. To be fair, the mistreatment of a beloved story was just one of the plethora of things that didn't work about The Last Stand.
James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Sophie Turner, Tye Sheridan, Evan Peters are all returning, and they'll be contending with Jessica Chastain's as yet undisclosed villain.