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February 20, 2024

Godzilla x Kong Stomps into Theaters Sooner as Bong Joon-ho’s Mickey 17 Gets Delayed

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Jan 10, 2024

Warner Bros. has made a last minute swap to its upcoming release calendar, moving up the monster sequel Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire by two weeks while undating Bong Joon-ho’s sci-fi drama Mickey 17 starring Robert Pattinson.

Godzilla x Kong Takes Over Mickey 17’s Release Date

Originally slated for March 15, 2024, Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire will now open in North American theaters on March 1. The move comes after Mickey 17 was unable to complete filming in time for its planned March 29 release due to production delays caused by the industry strikes last year.

With the Mickey 17 slot open, Warner Bros. decided to shift its big monster franchise sequel into that spot instead of waiting until mid-March. This scheduling change will give Godzilla x Kong a few extra weeks in theaters before it has to compete with Disney and Marvel’s mega-budget Fantastic Four reboot opening March 22.

Why the Sudden Change Makes Sense

Releasing Godzilla x Kong earlier takes advantage of positive fan momentum coming off the epic first official trailer reveal last week. Moving it into the vacant slot also allows the studio to get the giant monster punch-up into Chinese theaters ahead of Fantastic Four, hoping to capitalize on a potentially huge opening in that market.

In a statement, Warner Bros. confirmed: “We feel this is the perfect window to unleash the epic new chapter in the Monsterverse…the excitement from fans has been palpable since last week’s trailer dropped.”

What We Know About Godzilla x Kong’s Story

Directed by Adam Wingard, Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire picks up the story from 2021’s Godzilla vs. Kong, which saw the two titans forming an uneasy alliance to battle a common threat. Plot details on the sequel have remained mostly under wraps.

The recent trailer provides a first look at the new villain emerging to take on the iconic duo – Skar King, an unnatural hybrid kaiju creation constructed from parts of other Titans by the mysterious Monarch organization. It appears Skar King breaks free to wreak havoc, forcing Godzilla and Kong to team up again with the help of Monarch androids built by Apex Cybernetics.

Wingard has promised the new entry will be an “Infinity War-level event” bringing in many elements from Toho Studios’ long Godzilla history. The trailer shows what looks like Mechagodzilla and teases appearances by classic kaiju Rodan, Anguirus, and King Caesar. Rumored plot leaks also hint that Godzilla may go rogue at some point when his behavior becomes increasingly destructive and unpredictable.

What We Know About the Delayed Mickey 17

Based on author Edward Ashton’s acclaimed sci-fi novel, Mickey 17 stars Robert Pattinson as an “expendable” – a disposable employee sent on dangerous missions to colonize the ice world Niflheim. Whenever an expendable dies, their memories are regenerated into a new body clone with the same appearance, personality and skills. After Mickey 17 dies on a job, he returns to find his replacement clone Mickey 18 already working.

Bong Joon-Ho wrote the script and produces along with Plan B’s Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner. Joining Pattinson is an impressive supporting cast including Toni Collette, Mark Ruffalo, Naomi Ackie, Steven Yeun, and Pom Klementieff. Production got underway in 2022 but faced multiple pandemic delays which ultimately interfered with meeting the original release date.

With no new date set yet, it’s unclear if Mickey 17 will make it into theaters this year. Industry speculation is Warner Bros. may hold it for a prime Oscars-bait Fall 2024 release.

Monsterverse Continues After Godzilla x Kong Sequel

While specific plans beyond Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire haven’t been revealed yet, producer Alex Garcia confirmed future Monsterverse installments are actively in development.

“We have an idea how we want to progress the story,” Garcia told Variety. “We want to feel like it’s building towards something and not just one off after another film.”

Speculation over what Monsterverse movies could come next has focused mainly on solo outings for Kong and Godzilla, as well as potential match-ups against fan favorite kaiju like Destroyah or Biollante. Plots digging into the history of the ancient Titan civilizations hinted at in Kong: Skull Island also seem likely to be explored.

Monsterverse Impact on Wider Entertainment Landscape

The Monsterverse franchise serves as the anchor for Warner Bros. ambitions to follow in the footsteps of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The shared world of giant monsters has raked in over $1.4 billion worldwide so far, proving there is strong mainstream appeal for the right take on properties long considered niche.

Success breeding imitation, the Godzilla/Kong model of crafting an interconnected storyline from classic IP looks poised to be copied by competitors. Rumors suggest Universal may have similar plans for their classic monsters like Dracula, the Mummy, and the Wolfman. Expect more cinematic universes hoping to emulate Marvel’s box office dominance to move forward in the coming years.

Whether current momentum continues will greatly hinge on the reception to Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire when it stomps into theaters this March. Early buzz seems enthusiastic – if the sequel draws crowds anywhere near its predecessor’s nearly $500 million global gross, the Monsterverse’s domination should be assured for years to come.

Godzilla x Kong Social Media Buzz Heating Up

In the wake of the scheduling shakeup news, Godzilla x Kong has been surging across social media platforms:

Site Trending Hashtags Trending Keywords
Twitter #GodzillaxKong, #Monsterverse Godzilla, Kong, Skar King
Instagram N/A #godzillavskong, #kaiju
YouTube N/A Godzilla pink new look, Mechagodzilla returns theory

Lively debate and speculation continues on Reddit, with the Godzilla, Monsterverse, and movies SubReddit communities seeing heightened activity. Most discussion focuses on theorizing over plot points, Skar King’s role as apparent “big bad”, and what Easter egg references to classic kaiju might appear.

Overall conveying an enthusiastic tone, social media engagement indicates strong audience awareness and excitement priming the smash-hit franchise sequel for a potentially massive opening weekend.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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