20th Century Fox announced a slew of new release dates this morning, including the superhero schedule shuffle that sees Gambit kicked off the 2016 docket, but perhaps most exciting of all, the studio has set release dates for their two major monster pics, Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant and The Predator.
Alien: Covenant is up first, moving up its release date to August 4, 2017, a smart move given that the date is currently only held by Pitch Perfect 3 and the animated Blazing Samurai, which aren’t exactly targeting the same audience. The Prometheus semi-sequel, which is intended to be the second in a trilogy leading up to the events of Alien, Covenant will supposedly pick up 10 years after the events in Prometheus, and finds the crew of the colony ship Covenant headed for a remote planet, until they find a ‘paradise’ planet occupied solely by David (Michael Fassbender), the survivor of the Prometheus expedition.
Production on Alien: Covenant is rumored to begin this April in Sydney, Australia and that start date makes sense given the rate at which the sequel has been acquiring its impressive cast. In addition to the returning Fassbender, Scott has lined-up Katherine Waterston as the female lead (Noomi Rapace will not return for the sequel), Demian Bichir, Danny McBride, Jussie Smollett, Amy Seimetz, Carmen Ejogo, Billy Crudup and Callie Hernandez. Scott has also confirmed that, in keeping with the Alien tradition, Covenant will be rated-R.
As for The Predator, the highly-anticipated sequel from a script by Shane Black and Monster Squad director Fred Dekker will arrive in theaters on March 2, 2018; a date that is currently only populated by an “Untitled WB Event Film”, which probably means something superhero-y. Aside from the exciting screenwriting duo, and the recently debuted first poster, not much is known about the sequel, other than producer John Davis‘ assertion that it will “re-invent the franchise.”
Fox has also pushed up the release for their Eva Green-led adaptation of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, which moves from a Christmas release to it’s new slow on September 30, 2016. The December release would have pitted the film against an insanely crowded month, including heavy hitters like Rogue One, Assassin’s Creed and Jennifer Lawrence/Chris Pratt vehicle Passengers, while the new September positions Miss Peregrine in a significantly less competitive release schedule.