Just when we thought we had our fall 2018 movie schedule set up properly, Fox came through and threw a wrench into our plans. As part of a number of release date changes that 20th Century Fox announced this afternoon, the biggest surprise comes in the form of Untitled Deadpool Movie, which is set to hit theaters on Dec. 21, which also happens to be the same day that both Aquaman and Bumblebee hit theaters.
What exactly is this new Deadpool film, you might ask? That's hard to say, exactly. Ryan Reynolds dropped a fairly cryptic image on Twitter today, just saying "Thoughts?" with a dueling swords emoji next to it.
Thoughts? ⚔️ pic.twitter.com/fFe93tDI7e— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) September 28, 2018
For those who aren't up on their classic movie history, that's Deadpool seemingly reading a story to an adult Fred Savage in what looks like a kid's bedroom. This is a play on The Princess Bride, Rob Reiner's 1987 adventure film that found Fred Savage (as a child) sick in bed, being read this fantastic story by his grandfather (played by Peter Falk), with the grandfather doing his best to weave around the more romantic parts that a young boy might not want to hear in a book full of swashbuckling.
That's led speculation that this Dec. 21 date would be the release of a kid-friendly (or, as some sites are reporting, as kid-friendly as PG-13 can be) version of Deadpool 2 in theaters. This would more than likely be the flip of the extended, unrated "Super Duper $@%!#& Cut" of Deadpool 2 that was released back in August.
A move like this from Fox could spell trouble for both Aquaman and Bumblebee, given how popular the Deadpool character is right now in comparison to the other properties. A PG-13 Deadpool film could slice into what either of those films planned on making at the box office quite easily. It would also help this film, which already took in $734.2 million at the box office earlier this year, soar to bigger heights as a franchise.
This shift in their film schedule meant that Fox had to push back Alita: Battle Angel from the 21st of December to February 14, 2019, which was the day X-Men fans were set to finally get Dark Phoenix, which just dropped a new trailer. Dark Phoenix is, sadly, no stranger to having its release date shifted; it was previously set to hit theaters on November 7, 2018. Dark Phoenix is now set to be released on June 7, 2019, which means that the Channing Tatum-led Gambit project (which itself has been plagued with issues) got bumped from June of 2019 to March 13, 2020. Another X-Men property, New Mutants, is reportedly still set to be released on August 2, 2019 (that film was previously set to hit theaters back in April of 2018).
All of this is happening at a time when the future of the Fox-led X-Men franchise is in doubt. The Deadpool film shave has been their biggest hit, and while many fans are hoping for the X-Men to finally be absorbed into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, there's still a question if films like Gambit will survive whatever shake-up is bound to happen when Disney takes the reigns over at Fox sometime around the end of 2018.
For now, get ready for a very Merry Deadpool Christmas.