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If you thought that things were a little too comfortable in terms of the Avatar sequels, or even the status of The New Mutants’ release dates, you were right. As it turns out both of these oft delayed properties have been pushed back yet again, as part of a slew of release dates being shifted in a post Fox/Disney merger climate.

In an announcement made by The Walt Disney Studios, the Avatar series has now been slated to open every other year, on the weekend before Christmas, starting in 2021. Which means that Avatar 2 looks to be opening on December 17, 2021; with 2023, 2025, and 2027 being the release years for each of the proposed sequels following after. Though if you were wondering about Avatar 4 and 5 ever being formally green-lit, both films were announced as getting the go-ahead as of today.

Meanwhile, The New Mutants has been shifted to April 3, 2020; which is almost two years after the film’s originally slated opening for April 13, 2018. This is a confirmation that, at least for now, the film will be released theatrically, and also means that director Josh Boone can finally undertake the reshoots that were supposed to have already been done on the film.

It’s rather interesting that both the Avatar franchise and The New Mutants would be pushed back again, after both projects have become notable for their delays. But looking into the prospects of both properties, it’s not hard to see why the Fox/Disney merger would result in their delays.

With the release schedule of two studios to content with, the newly cemented studio family was always going to have to play musical chairs with their slate of finished or in-production films. But in the case of The New Mutants, the opportunity to start a new franchise of mutant powered adventure is something that Fox/Disney is going to want to put its best foot forward out on.

As Dark Phoenix is supposedly closing out the X-Men saga for the foreseeable future, The New Mutants could not only keep the mutant fires lit, it could be the next big movie hit in the Marvel Comics’ stable. However, the Avatar franchise has a little more to worry about with such a delay taking place.

Avatar 2 was originally meant to be released in December of 2014, but everything from three new movies being added to the docket to he revitalization of the Star Wars franchise caused it get pushed further down the line. Though with release dates now intended for the fully green-lit compliment of films, and the odd bit of new casting news coming up in the public eye, it feels like this delay could be the one that allows the series to come back to life after almost a decade of dormancy.

For reference, here’s the full rundown of when the Avatar sequels will be released, under the new strategy that alternates their Christmas release slot with the continuation of the Star Wars universe:

Avatar 2 – 12/17/21
Avatar 3 – 12/22/23
Avatar 4 – 12/19/25
Avatar 5 – 12/17/27

The Fox/Disney family is about to get a lot more interesting, especially if The New Mutants and the Avatar franchise take off like they have the potential to do. It certainly helps to have new release dates that will help them take on the world in the fighting shape that they need to be in.

However, if you’re looking for something a little more recent to kill the time waiting for both of these box office events, you can check out our 2019 release schedule for your best options.

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