Universal Pictures announced that its newest reboot of The Mummy, starring Tom Cruise and Sofia Boutella (Kingsman: The Secret Service), has moved its release date from March 24, 2017 to June 9, 2017. Also scheduled to open on that summer date, though obviously subject to change, are the sequel to World War Z and The Divergent Series: Ascendant.
No much is known yet about the plot of the new movie, which is still in pre-production, but the mythical Egyptian beast has been laying dormant since 2008, when the fourth film in the Brendan Fraser franchise was released. A spin-off series of films focusing on Dwayne Johnson’s Scorpion King character produced one theatrical and three direct-to-DVD features. Initial reports suggest that the film would be set in contemporary times and that the Mummy antagonist might be female.
The Mummy could mark Universal’s best shot in creating a universe of interconnected films, a la Marvel or Star Wars. The studio owns the rights to Dracula, Frankenstein, Wolf Man, and other classic monsters, all of which could potentially be re-developed in the coming years and decades. (An attempt to revive the characters in the 1990s flopped with the failure of Kenneth Branagh’s Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein in 1994.)
Alex Kurtzman, the co-writer of Transformers, Cowboys & Aliens, and The Amazing Spiderman 2, has been hired to direct The Mummy. His sole previous directorial effort was the Chris Pine/Michelle Pfeiffer drama People Like Us, which earned $12 million in 2012.
The summer of 2017 is currently in flux. After Star Wars: Episode VIII shifted from May to December, the new Spider-Man and Pirates of the Caribbean have shuffled release dates to fill the void and maximize their summer window.