So after much hand-wringing and re-shoots and rescheduling and then falling off the face of the earth so hard some of us speculated the House of Mouse might just shunt this film off to a Disney+ release, it looks like New Mutants will finally see a theatrical release. Which, great, but the issues with casting still remain.
For those who aren’t familiar with the New Mutants, the film follows a group of young mutants based on their comic counterparts… from a very specific story. The New Mutants were created by Chris Claremont and Bob McLeod and saw their first appearance in 1982. Intended as a spin-off of the then wildly popular Uncanny X-Men, this group focused on a younger set of mutants and their adventures. However, the movie centers around one ground-breaking story in particular. The art and story-telling medium of comics saw some radical shifting during the 80’s, though most will probably recall stories like Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns. The Demon Bear story, notably New Mutants #18 in particular, was one of the earlier stories to push the medium in terms of both storytelling and art, and this is the plot setting for the movie.
However, this movie for all its other setbacks getting to a release date, still has other legitimate criticisms to contend with, chief among them the casting of Henry Zaga as Roberto da Costa aka Sunspot. Why is this a problem? Sunspot is a Black Brazilian, and his childhood facing racism for the color of his skin left an indelible mark on his character as an adult. And before you ask, yes, it is EXPLICITLY referenced in comics canon.
If you are still interested in seeing New Mutants on the big screen after its long and winding journey, the newest release date (for now) has been slotted for April 3, 2020.