A Closer Look at Disney Studios Film Slate
With all the uncertainty behind changes initiated by the Walt Disney Company/Twenty-First Century Fox merger, one thing is for sure: it’s time to update your movie calendars. Fans of the Star Wars and Avatar franchises will have to wait a little longer to see upcoming films.
It’s not the case with Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, the final film in the most recent Star Wars trilogy that began with Star Wars: The Force Awakens and continued with Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Skywalker is still on target to debut this year on December 20. But after that, the first film of the next new Star Wars trilogy won’t reach the big screen for three years, not until December 16, 2022, with the next two films scheduled for December 20, 2024, and December 19, 2026. Meanwhile, gone is the plan to fill the years in between movies with spinoff movies (think Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and Solo: A Star Wars Story).
The wait Star Wars fans had to suffer at times is nothing compared to the wait by fans of Avatar. You might remember Avatar – this little film that debuted back in December 2009? Kind of revolutionary in its special effects and use of performance-capture technology? Grossed over two billion dollars worldwide? Of course, you do. And you’d think there would have been at least one sequel since then. But director and writer James Cameron is nothing, if not meticulous. Still, fans eagerly anticipating Avatar 2 at least had a release date of December 18, 2020, to look forward.
But, I’m afraid the Disney merger with Fox didn’t help speed things up, with the recent announcement that Avatar 2 has been pushed back another year and will now hit the screens on December 17, 2021, with follow-up films scheduled for December 22, 2023, December 19, 2025, and December 17, 2027.
This means that Disney will be releasing either an Avatar or Star Wars movie every year from 2021 through 2027. Looks like Disney is banking on Star Wars fans being the same people who watch Avatar movies. Hey, that’s probably true. So, once the sequel Avatar fans have long been waiting for finally arrives in December 2021, at least, moving forward, they can fill the year in between with a new Star Wars film.
The merger has also changed release dates for two upcoming Marvel films set in the X-Men universe. Fans anticipating New Mutants, starring Maisie Williams from Game of Thrones, will now have to wait until April 2020. Meanwhile, Gambit, starring Channing Tatum, is no longer on the schedule, though it was originally slated for release on March 13, 2020.
Other upcoming films’ release dates affected by the merger include Ad Astra, starring Brad Pitt (now September 20, 2019), Stephen Spielberg’s new version of West Side Story (now December 18, 2020), and Cruella, a sequel to the Disney classic 101 Dalmations (now December 23, 2020).
And you can now expect to see the following films hit the big screen on the following new dates: Fox 2000’s The Art of Racing in the Rain (August 9, 2019), Fox Searchlight’s Ready or Not (August 23, 2019), and Artemis Fowl (May 29, 2020).
Full List of Disney Studios Films Slated through 2027:
- 5/10/19 FSL TOLKIEN
- 5/24/19 DIS ALADDIN
- 6/7/19 FOX DARK PHOENIX
- 6/21/19 DIS TOY STORY 4
- 7/12/19 FOX STUBER
- 7/19/19 DIS LION KING, THE
- 8/9/19 FOX ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN, THE
- 8/23/19 FSL READY OR NOT
- 9/20/19 FOX AD ASTRA
- 10/4/19 FOX WOMAN IN THE WINDOW, THE
- 10/18/19 DIS MALEFICENT: MISTRESS OF EVIL
- 11/15/19 FOX FORD v. FERRARI
- 11/22/19 DIS FROZEN 2
- 12/20/19 DIS STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER
- 12/25/19 FOX SPIES IN DISGUISE
- 1/10/20 FOX UNDERWATER
- 2/14/20 FOX UNTITLED KINGSMAN MOVIE
- 2/21/20 FOX CALL OF THE WILD
- 3/6/20 DIS ONWARD
- 3/27/20 DIS MULAN
- 4/3/20 FOX NEW MUTANTS, THE
- 5/1/20 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 5/29/20 DIS ARTEMIS FOWL
- 6/19/20 DIS UNTITLED PIXAR ANIMATION
- 7/3/20 FOX FREE GUY
- 7/17/20 FOX BOB’S BURGERS
- 7/24/20 DIS JUNGLE CRUISE
- 8/14/20 DIS ONE AND ONLY IVAN, THE
- 10/9/20 FOX DEATH ON THE NILE
- 11/6/20 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 11/6/20 FOX RON’S GONE WRONG
- 11/25/20 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY ANIMATION
- 12/18/20 FOX WEST SIDE STORY
- 12/23/20 DIS CRUELLA
- 2/12/21 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 3/5/21 FOX NIMONA
- 3/12/21 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 5/7/21 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 5/28/21 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 6/18/21 DIS UNTITLED PIXAR ANIMATION
- 7/9/21 DIS UNTITLED INDIANA JONES
- 7/30/21 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 10/8/21 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 11/5/21 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 11/24/21 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY ANIMATION
- 12/17/21 FOX AVATAR 2
- 2/18/22 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 3/18/22 DIS UNTITLED PIXAR
- 5/6/22 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 5/27/22 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 6/17/22 DIS UNTITLED PIXAR
- 7/8/22 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 7/29/22 DIS UNTITLED MARVEL
- 10/7/22 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 11/4/22 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 11/23/22 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY ANIMATION
- 12/16/22 DIS UNTITLED STAR WARS
- 2/17/23 DIS UNTITLED DISNEY LIVE ACTION
- 12/22/23 FOX AVATAR 3
- 12/20/24 DIS UNTITLED STAR WARS
- 12/19/25 FOX AVATAR 4
- 12/18/26 DIS UNTITLED STAR WARS
- 12/17/27 FOX AVATAR 5
What do you think of Disney Studios film slate? What films would you like to see in the future from Disney/Fox? Let us know in the comments.