New Report Says James Cameron Delayed Dark Phoenix’s Release

As the saying goes, “James Cameron doesn’t do what James Cameron does for James Cameron. James Cameron does what James Cameron does because James Cameron is… James Cameron.”

According to a report from The Hollywood Reporter, James Cameron pressured Fox into moving Dark Phoenix so that his film Alita: Battle Angel could be moved out of a more competitive spot. It goes on to say that Cameron felt Alita would lose horribly when facing a December opening weekend that included Aquaman, Bumblebee, and Mary Poppins Returns. Alita: Battle Angel ended up grossing $25 million opening weekend, going on to gross $404 million worldwide.

Alita was bumped from December 21 to February 14, while Dark Phoenix moved from February 14 to June 7. For Dark Phoenix, this followed a previous delay from November 2 to February 14.

Stacey Snider, then Fox’s Chairman and CEO, conceded to Cameron, much to the dismay of Vice Chairman Emma Watts, writer-director Simon Kinberg, and producer Hutch Parker. According to the report, “Emma, Hutch and Simon begged her not do it.”

Dark Phoenix’s opening weekend only grossed $33 million domestically at the box office, the lowest opening weekend of any X-Men film.

Directed and written by Simon Kinberg, Dark Phoenix stars James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Sophie Turner, Tye Sheridan, Alexandra Shipp, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Evan Peters, and Jessica Chastain. The film is out now.

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