X-Men producer Lauren Shuler Donner is hopeful upcoming spinoff The New Mutants will still get a theatrical release, after reports the movie was heading straight to Hulu. Both New Mutants and X-Men: Dark Phoenix have been problematic productions for Fox. New Mutants was pitched as a horror-infused take on the superhero genre, with director Josh Boone claiming he took inspiration from horror sequel A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors.
The creepy tone of the first trailer for New Mutants was greeted with a warm reception too, but soon the release date of the movie was pushed back. Soon reports emerged the studio wanted up to 50% of the film reshot and new characters added, but the additional photography still hasn’t happened. It appears the sweeping reshoots may not happen now, and the studio is seriously considering a direct to Hulu release for what is seen as a troubled production. X-Men: Dark Phoenix has been similarly dogged by reports of significant reshoots and poor test screening results.
Given the amount of trouble the studio has had with New Mutants, it feels like a Hulu release is the likely outcome of this drama. Speaking at a panel for Legion at TCA (via Deadline) producer Lauren Shuler Donner is against New Mutants being dumped and is ‘hopeful’ it will get a theatrical push.
[The production team] worked hard on it. I want to see it released [theatrically], I’d hate to see it thrown at Hulu.
The X-Men franchise is almost certain to be rebooted following the Fox/Disney merger, and if the reshoots for New Mutants haven’t been scheduled yet, they’re unlikely to happen now. Apparently, Boone’s original cut scored quite well with test audiences, but the filmmaker and studio are still struggling to agree on a final vision for it. Reportedly, it was the success of IT that caused the studio to push for a more horror-focused version, and while that direction initially got fans excited, the constant delays have dulled anticipation for the project.
The New Mutants and X-Men: Dark Phoenix will likely be the final installments of the current X-Men universe. Marvel producer Kevin Feige is currently trying to figure out the next move for the X-Men series, and will likely reboot so he can start fresh. The original X-Men was the movie that helped launch the current wave of comic book movies, so it will be bittersweet for fans to say goodbye to nearly 20 years of continuity. There’s still a chance Disney could try to merge the current timeline with that of the MCU, but from the outside, a fresh start is a safer bet.
- New Mutants (2020) release date: Apr 03, 2020
- X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) release date: Jun 07, 2019