20th Century Fox has dropped a major bombshell today, by announcing an official release date for Roland Emmerich’s longtime-rumored sequel to his 1996 sci-fi alien invasion blockbuster, Independence Day 2.

The project – which Emmerich has been planning as a two-part followup titled ID Forever – could bring back stars Jeff Goldblum and Bill Pullman. However, Will Smith is less of a certainty, given his previous comment made about not wanting to turn into “the sequel guy.” (Maybe weaker box office returns for After Earth will help change his mind?) Similarly, there’s a fair amount of doubt surrounding the idea that the Independence Day sequel will – without question – be successful enough to kickoff a new series of films.

Regardless, Independence Day 2 – which seems to be the official title for now – is scheduled to reach theaters on July 3rd, 2015.

Meanwhile, Fox has played musical chairs with the release dates for a few other big genre blockbusters arriving over the next two years:

  • Assassin’s Creed, starring Michael Fassbender, has been pushed back from May 22nd, 2015 to June 19th, 2015.
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, the followup to Rise of the Planet of the Apes, has moved from May 23rd, 2014 to July 18th, 2014.
  • Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Days of Future Past has swapped dates with the next Planet of the Apes installment, by moving up from July 18th to May 23rd, 2014.

In addition, the studio has claimed July 31st, 2015 for Peregrine’s Home for Peculiars, which is based upon Ransom Riggs’ novel “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” (featuring many a spooky antique photograph collected by the author). Screenwriter Jane Goldman (The Woman in Black) is working on the adapted script, and last we heard Tim Burton was circling the project as director. No word yet if that remains the case.

Lastly, to complete this batch of release date updates:

  • Robert Rodriguez’ Machete Kills has been pushed back from September 13th to October 4th, 2013. That’s a much small delay than that announced earlier this week for Rodriguez’ Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, which is now arriving in Summer 2014.
  • Homefront, starring Jason Statham and based on Sylvester Stallone’s adapted script, has moved from October 4th to November 27th, 2013.
  • Stretch, the new action-comedy written and directed by Joe Carnahan (The Grey), is now slated to open in theaters on March 21st, 2014.

Which of the above-mentioned films is your personal most-anticipated? Is 2015 on-course to become the craziest year for blockbuster sequels ever, between Independence Day 2, The Avengers 2, Star Wars: Episode VII, etc.? Let us know your thoughts and feelings in the comments section!

Source: 20th Century Fox, Universal, Open Road Films