It’s been announced that the release date for the upcoming X-Men film ‘Dark Phoenix’ had been pushed back but it wasn’t entirely clear why until now. Rumors swirled that it could be related to massive reshoots or a setup for a possible connection to the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Disney’s purchase of Fox but now the reason why has been revealed. It wasn’t either of these two that was the cause but how a certain region reacted to the initial trailer.
That region is, of course, China. The country has become one of the largest potential money makers for filmmakers these days as more extensive releases have becoming more frequent as of late. Fox shifted the release dates of not only ‘Dark Phoenix’ to June 7th, 2019 but also ‘Alita: Battle Angel’ to February 14th, 2019. Both of these release changes were to gain better release times in China for less competition in theaters and to better position themselves around key dates such as putting ‘Alita’ after the Chinese New year.
With there being a more cosmic spin on this film, Director Simon Kinberg is hoping that it will be welcomed by audiences and the Chinese market was likely key in this decision-making process:
“I always look to the comics obviously as the touchstones for the movies, and as you know and all fans know there is a lot of cosmic, extraterrestrial stories in the X-Men lore. It’s not something that we’ve explored in the past. It’s something we certainly begin to explore in this movie, and if it’s appropriate to whatever the next movies would be then, I would absolutely do that. It’s something I think audiences have almost grown accustomed to now given that the Marvel [MCU] movies are so often now intergalactic.”
While not all big-budget galactic science fiction films have done well in China, such as the “Star Wars” franchise, there have been plenty that has had considerable bumps in sales due to the country and their demographic and broad base of viewers.
Did the idea of a release in China even factor into why you felt ‘Dark Phoenix’ had been delayed? Share your thoughts in the comments below, True Believers!
In Dark Phoenix, the X-Men face their most formidable and powerful foe: one of their own, Jean Grey. During a rescue mission in space, Jean is nearly killed when she is hit by a mysterious cosmic force. Once she returns home, this force not only makes her infinitely more powerful but far more unstable. Wrestling with this entity inside her, Jean unleashes her powers in ways she can neither comprehend nor contain. With Jean spiraling out of control and hurting the ones she loves most, she begins to unravel the very fabric that holds the X-Men together. Now, with this family falling apart, they must find a way to unite — not only to save Jean’s soul but to save our very planet from aliens who wish to weaponize this force and rule the galaxy.
‘Dark Phoenix’ will be released in theaters on June 7th, 2019!