When it was announced that Ridley Scott would be directing Matt Damon in "The Martian," there was that usual caveat that comes with anything associated with the director, that plans could change or the project could wind up on the backburner. But then things got more real when producer Simon Kinberg revealed that production would begin this fall. But wait, what about "Prometheus 2"? Isn't that supposed to be the next project from the filmmaker, and won't it fill that vacant release date Fox has slotted for it? The simple answer is: no.
Fox has announced today that the previous mystery date of March 4, 2016 has now been moved ahead to November 25, 2015 and it will be the home of "The Martian." The Drew Goddard-penned adaptation of the book by Andy Weir follows an astronaut who is stranded on a Martian colony and struggles to survive. Back on Earth, NASA tries to mount a rescue mission. With Christopher Nolan's "Interstellar" this year, and "The Martian" next fall, are we seeing a resurgence of brainy sci-fi? Guess we'll see, but this is supposed to have a more adventurous spirit of something in the vein of "Apollo 13" or "Cast Away," so don't expect a "2001"-esque drama.
Meanwhile, Tim Burton's "Peregrine's Home for Peculiars" has been bumped from July 31, 2015 to the previous Ridley Scott date of March 4, 2016, which makes sense considering lensing hasn't even started and the director still has "Big Eyes" to get in the can and stump for on the awards circuit.
So what will take that open summer date? Well, Fox is banking on a "The Fault In Our Stars" reunion bringing in the big bucks. "Paper Towns" is based on another book by Josh Green, it will be adapted by 'Fault' writers Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, and 'Fault' star Nat Wolff will lead. You'll probably want to bring your hankies again.
Finally, "Clifford The Big Red Dog" is getting the movie you've always dreamed about. It arrives on April 8, 2016.