With the COVID-19 pandemic shifting just about every single 2020 film’s release date, most of the major ones pushing into 2021, it was only inevitable that many of the scheduled 2021 releases would see their dates pushed back as well. We already witnessed the Robert Pattinson starring Warner Bros. picture The Batman have its March 2021 release pushed back to March 2022. Now one of 2021’s biggest awards prospects (and most anticipated) is also shifting its release by a whole year.
Per Deadline, we have news that Paramount has moved Damien Chazelle’s new feature Babylon back from its Christmas 2021 release date all the way to its new date on Christmas 2022. After a limited release on December 25th, it’ll then see a wide release on January 6th, 2023. Quite a ways away to be planning so far ahead.
Babylon stars our reigning Best Supporting Actor Oscar winner Brad Pitt, opposite a female lead that’s still a bit up in the air. Chazelle’s La La Land lead Emma Stone, who won an Oscar for her performance, was originally cast before exiting, with talks now that Margot Robbie is the frontrunner to replace her. The film is said to tell the story of Hollywood’s transition from silent pictures to the talkies, a subject matter that saw massive Oscar success for Michel Hazanavicius’ The Artist a decade ago.
No matter when it gets released, Chazelle’s name alone will make sure that Babylon is one of the most talked about awards prospects of its year. The filmmaker became the youngest ever to win Best Director at the Oscars for La La Land five years ago, winning the gold at the age of 32. His most recent picture, 2018’s First Man, was a major contender that flopped hard due to its dismal box office performance, despite a positive reception from critics.
Pitt is currently filming the leading role in David Leitch’s Bullet Train, his first feature since picking up the Oscar for his work in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood last year. Robbie is a two-time Oscar nominee, most recently being nominated last year for Bombshell, and can next be seen reprising her role as Harley Quinn in The Suicide Squad, currently scheduled for this summer. We’ll see if the delay in release will alter the casting for Babylon.