Disney pushes back several Marvel movie release dates

Walt Disney Co announced on Tuesday it will be pushing back the release dates for numerous upcoming Marvel films including, "Blade," "Fantastic Four" and "Avengers: Secret Wars."

Disney pushes back several Marvel movie release dates
The Avengers logo is projected with the Singapore CBD skyline in the background, at a fan event for Marvel Studio's Avengers: Infinity War movie, in Singapore April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Feline Lim

Oct 11 (Reuters) - Walt Disney Co announced on Tuesday it will be pushing back the release dates for numerous upcoming Marvel films including, "Blade," "Fantastic Four" and "Avengers: Secret Wars."

Following "Blade" director Bassam Tariq's departure from the project in September due to scheduling conflicts, Marvel has decided to temporarily shut down production of the film to search for a new director. "Blade" is now slated to premiere on Sept. 6, 2024, instead of Nov. 3, 2023, which has impacted the rest of the studios' production scheduling.

"Deadpool 3" has moved from Sept. 6, 2024, to Nov. 8, 2024; "Fantastic Four" has been shifted from Nov. 8, 2024, to Feb. 14, 2025; an untitled Marvel project was moved from Feb. 14, 2025, to Nov. 7, 2025; "Avengers: Secret Wars" has been pushed from Nov. 7, 2025, to May 1, 2026; and an untitled Marvel movie went from May 1, 2026, to no longer being on Disney's release schedule.

A source familiar with the studio's plans told Reuters that Marvel is using the "Blade" production break to find a replacement for Tariq to work with "Moon Knight" writer Beau DeMayo, who's the main screenwriter for "Blade.”

An unnamed source with authority on the film starring Oscar winner Mahershala Ali told The Hollywood Reporter that "They want to get it right," which subsequently means delays.

The Marvel Blade character who first appeared in the comic book "The Tomb of Dracula," written by Marv Wolfman in 1973 eventually had his own storyline that was later adapted into the Wesley Snipes film trilogy which includes, "Blade," "Blade II" and "Blade Trinity.”

Throughout the Marvel Cinematic Multiverse, stories have been intertwined and a significant delay from one film often impacts the slate for others. A similar postponement was made for the film "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" due to the pandemic and led to "Thor: Love and Thunder" and "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" being pushed back as well.

Reporting by Danielle Broadway; Editing by David Gregorio