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Maisie Williams in The New Mutants

Fox’s X-Men franchise seemingly came to an ignominious end in June with the release of Dark Phoenix, but there is another movie from that universe still seemingly on the way. Josh Boone’s The New Mutants has been plagued with problems, leading some to speculate if it will ever see the light of day. Well, while the future is never certain, it looks like The New Mutants has finally gotten some good news. Take a look:

It is best to take this with a grain of salt until we hear more, but according to Discussing Film’s Jacob on Twitter, The New Mutants has had some test screenings and the results were not as disastrous as one might have expected. Instead what he heard is that the sentiment of those who supposedly saw the film was that it is “decent” and that the test screenings featured a new cut that is more in line with the horror vibe glimpsed in the first trailer.

We’ll have to wait and see if this all proves true, and it is important to remember that the opinion out of test screenings is not necessarily a reliable indicator of how a movie will actually be received by the general public. Nevertheless, this is perhaps the best news we’ve heard about The New Mutants in quite some time.

The last thing we heard about New Mutants was a few weeks back with a report that Disney was “unimpressed” with the X-Men spinoff film and thinks its box office potential limited. That was just the latest in a long line of bad press for the film so to hear that it might actually be decent is welcome news. ‘Decent’ may be far better than we could have hoped for and that tepid adjective might as well be ‘outstanding’ given the circumstances.

The other thing that is interesting is the mention of the test screenings featuring a cut of the film that is in keeping with director Josh Boone’s original vision for a horror comic book movie. The horror vibe is one of the things that was exciting about New Mutants in the first place, since we don’t get many horror comic book movies-- and it definitely came through in the first trailer so this is a good sign.

It’s unclear at what point The New Mutants steered away from the horror direction, because we had previously heard that the one of the objectives of the film’s reshoots, alongside adding a new character, was to make it scarier. Actress Anya Taylor-Joy previously praised the reshoots as allowing them to make the movie they set out to. Those extensive, much publicized reshoots, haven’t actually happened yet though.

So it sounds like perhaps the film is being reworked with the existing material. After trying to make it work in some other way or dealing with whatever problems have held it up to this point, they may be circling back around to the director’s original vision.

The New Mutants was originally set to come out over a year ago, on April 13, 2018, then it was pushed back to February 22 of this year. It was then delayed to this August but the 2nd has come and went and the film is now slated for April 3, 2020, two years since it was meant to come out. We’ll see if it actually makes that date, but if past is prologue, I wouldn’t hold my breath.

There was some speculation that, as if ashamed of it, Disney would release The New Mutants on Hulu or Disney+, but for the moment, it is still headed to the big screen. If these rumors about the test screenings are true though, that will be a good thing. Although it’s not in the main line of X-Men films, it would be nice for Fox’s X-Men franchise to have a more positive, better received ending than Dark Phoenix.

The New Mutants will maybe open in theaters on April 3, 2020. Instead of waiting for Godot, check out our 2019 Release Schedule to see what movies are opening this year.

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