Millennium Films has shelved Bryan Singer's Red Sonja movie for the time being. The fantasy-adventure reboot's been surrounded in controversy ever since Singer signed on as its director. Millennium attached the X-Men and Bohemian Rhapsody filmmaker to the project last September, even though Singer was already being sued for allegedly raping a teenaged boy at the time. Additional allegations of sexual assault were raised against the director last month, in an article published by The Atlantic.
A day after The Atlantic's report was released, Millennium Films confirmed that Singer would remain attached to direct Red Sonja for the time being. CEO Avi Lerner further released a statement in support of the director, though he tried to distance himself from the comments in the wake of the ensuring backlash. It now appears the movie has been delayed entirely, after Millennium originally planned to start filming in Bulgaria later this year.
Deadline has been informed that Singer's Red Sonja is "not on [Millennium's slate at the moment" and will not be up for sale at the European Film Market in Berlin this month. Singer, however, has yet to be formally removed from the project.
This news isn't remotely surprising, in the wake of the criticisms levied against Millennium and Lerner for not firing Singer from Red Sonja. The move was roundly condemned by the Times Up organization and similar bodies that have worked to address sexual assault and harassment in Hollywood following the Harvey Weinstein scandal. It also brought some attention to Millennium Films and Lerner's own allegations of misconduct, which includes a 2017 lawsuit for sexual harassment and threatening Expendables' Terry Crews with "troubles" after the actor refused to retract his sexual assault claims against WME agent Adam Venit. Lerner has since faced renewed criticisms for using his influence and power to both abuse others and protect those who have a long history of sexual misconduct allegations, like himself.
The next step will be removing Singer from the project altogether, which Millennium has yet to do. Other studios have already begun to cut their ties with the director, in the wake of the new rape allegations against him. Fox, specifically, has distanced itself from the director throughout its awards push for Bohemian Rhapsody, after nearly twenty years of working with Singer on the X-Men movies. Star Rami Malek has also spoken out and described his time working with Singer on Bohemian Rhapsody as "not pleasant", before the director was fired for an unexplained absence. At the same time, it's been reported that Singer could end up making as much as $40 million for his work on Bohemian Rhapsody, and it's still possible he will direct Red Sonja at a later date. Suffice it to say, there's much more work to be done in addressing sexual misconduct in Hollywood post-Weinstein.