You’ll remember a few months back Warner Bros. unveiled the other corners of their master blockbuster plan: aside from the D.C. Universe which is already set until 2020, they unveiled dates for two other franchises they hope will be the cornerstone of their business for the next decade to come, the ‘Harry Potter’ spin-off “Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them” and the “Lego” movie empire. But things are shifting in the “Lego” universe a bit, possibly because development on one film is taking a little bit longer than initially expected.
Originally set for a September 2016 release date, “Lego: Ninjago,” has moved back a full year to September 22, 2017. However, “Lego: Batman” originally set for May 2017, has now moved up to February 10, 2017, a date similar to the Feb opening of the original super-successful “The Lego Movie.” This means “Lego: Batman” will be the next ‘Lego’ movie to hit theaters and perhaps the thinking is this character is already popular and established while ‘Ninjago,’ originally scheduled to hit first, is still more of an “unknown” property in comparison. Finally, the “The Lego Movie 2” has changed dates too, but only moved up one week to May 18, 2018. None of these films have much competition stacked up next to them yet, but that will surely change.
In other related Warner Bros. news, is Joe Wright’s “Pan” their next “Jupiter Ascending”? The fantasy adventure origin story was supposed to hit this summer on July 24th, but because of a “crowded field,” WB is moving the film to October 9th, later this fall. This would be the second year in a row that WB has pushed a would-be blockbuster out of the summer tentpole season. Last year they pushed the Wachowski’s “Jupiter Ascending” to February of this year and we all know how that went.
“Pan” was originally slated to face off against Fox’s “Paper Towns,” Sony‘s Adam Sandler vehicle “Pixels” and the Weinstein Company’s “Southpaw.” Now “Pan” will open the same weekend as Universal‘s “Steve Jobs” moving starring Michael Fassbender, Seth Rogen and Kate Winslet. In a statement, WB distribution exec Dan Fellman said, “We wanted to give ‘Pan’ the space to extend its theatrical run, so taking it out of the cluttered summer season made the most sense.” Director Joe Wright said the move will allow him and his special effects team more time to properly render their complex visuals.
“Pan”— October 9, 2015
“Lego Batman”— February 10, 2017
“Lego: Ninjago”— September 22, 2017
“The Lego Movie 2″— May 18, 2018