Marvel’s Most Anticipated Team-Up Movie May Be In Trouble

Things aren’t looking good for the multiverse.

Ryan Reynolds and Hugh Jackman in Deadpool 3
Marvel Studios

Marvel’s cinematic universe has been struggling, and much of the tension rests on the shoulders of one upcoming film. Deadpool 3 is one of Marvel’s most anticipated projects, not only because it will bridge the gap between the studio and its properties at Fox, but because of the unique crossover it’s promised. The threequel could be the film that properly brings mutants, and maybe even the X-Men, into the MCU. Fans have been waiting for this for years, but that wait is getting longer.

Deadpool 3 was slated for a May 2024 release, but the ongoing actors’ strike has put production on hold. Disney and Marvel were clearly confident in Deadpool’s production schedule before, having moved the film up from its previous date in late fall. But now the film is stuck in limbo, and the studio has quietly shifted its premiere to reflect that.

Disney recently updated its slate of upcoming theatrical releases, which covers every release until June 2024. Deadpool 3 is notably absent now, which all but confirms a new release date. While this list may or may not be complete, it’s hard to ignore the fact that Deadpool 3 was one of the studios’ most promising projects just a few months ago. Now, it’s apparently not even a factor in future plans. That could spell trouble for the MCU as a whole, but it could also provide an unexpected opportunity.

Fans may be waiting a bit longer for Deadpool’s MCU debut.

20th Century Studios

Of course, it makes perfect sense to bump Deadpool. Production is at a complete standstill until actors and writers get a fair deal from studios, and there’s no telling how long it will take to end the strike, let alone resume production and finish the film. But it’s still a problem for Marvel, especially since the strikes have halted most of the movies and shows the studio has in development. That includes the upcoming Fantastic Four, which appeared close to locking down its cast. Captain America: Brave New World was the last Marvel production to wrap filming, but it’s still a long way from its 2024 release date.

The Marvels could be the last theatrical release we get from Marvel for a long time, which might be a blessing in disguise for both the studio and fans. Marvel’s been fighting a losing battle against franchise fatigue these past few years, and its most recent releases haven’t exactly helped turn the tide. The studio has been reluctant to step back and reevaluate its strategy, but the strikes have forced it to slow down. The strikes represent a reckoning not just in terms of fair pay for the workers that make these films possible, but for Marvel’s production quality.

A strike is meant to be disruptive, but it doesn’t have to be destructive. Hopefully, companies like Disney can concede to a fair agreement for writers and actors, and come back stronger together. But until that happens, its most anticipated films will have to wait.

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