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Unfortunately, it’s been a rocky road for the production of Maze Runner: The Death Cure, the third installment of the Maze Runner young adult movies. Star Dylan O’Brien suffered major injuries on set and production had to be halted indefinitely to give the star time to recover. Production was supposed to begin again this month, but it seems that things are more complicated than expected, and the film has been pushed back from its initial release date in 2017 to January 12, 2018.
According to Deadline, Maze Runner: The Death Cure was originally slated for release on February 17, 2017, but will now be pushed back almost a full year. The big delay is presumably to give Dylan O’Brien more time to recover before stepping back into the franchise. Production was temporarily stopped on March 28 when O’Brien was struck by a car during a stunt accident; there were conflicting reports as to how serious his injuries were, but Fox postponed production indefinitely on April 29 to give the actor enough to recover.
The good news from all this is that Dylan O’Brien seems to be on the road to recovery. It was announced earlier this month that the actor was in talks to take the lead role in the Vince Flynn adaptation, American Assassin alongside Michael Keaton. That would be another major action franchise role for O’Brien, and it’s currently scheduled to begin filming later this year. With O'Brien filming two action films this year, he'll need to focus on recovery in preperation for his return.
As to why Fox has to delay The Death Cure, it could be a mixture of giving Dylan O’Brien more time heal and Fox deciding that, if they can’t make the original release, 2018 is the next best option for the film. Regardless, O’Brien’s well-being is more important than rushing production to make a movie.
Wes Ball has returned to direct the third installment, which will see Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) and his friends on a mission to find the cure for a deadly disease known as "the flare" that is on the verge of wiping out all of humanity. The film stars Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Kaya Scodelario, Ki Hong Lee, Rosa Salazar, and Dexter Darden. Fans will have to wait a while to see the third installment in the franchise, now set to release on January 12, 2018.