It's been a crappy week if you're a member of the Guardians Of The Galaxy, to say the least.
After Dave Bautista publicly attacked Disney for firing James Gunn and called working without him on the third instalment in the franchise 'nauseating', Chris Pratt's next blockbuster vehicle has hit the skids. It's been reported by Collider that 'Cowboy Ninja Viking' - which was set to be Michelle MacLaren's feature-length directorial debut - has been put on hold indefinitely and removed from Universal's release schedule.
Priyanka Chopra was only just announced for the female lead, however Collider's report claims that the original release date slated for June 2019 was too soon as they're hoping to turn it into a franchise. The movie has gone through several drafts, including an original draft from 'Deadpool' writers Rhett Rheese and Paul Wernick, with the most recent draft by 'Rampage' scribe Ryan Engle and 'Wrath Of The Titans' writer Dan Mazeau - so it's clear that they're content not to rush it simply to make a release date.
The source comic follows a team of psychiatric patients with Multiple Personality Disorder who are transformed into agents known as Triplets, where each of the personalities is given the skills of whatever they desire. Pratt's character would have the skills of a cowboy, a ninja and a viking whilst others included Amish, Demo Expert, and Army Captain. Another was Sniper, Archer, and Clothing Designer whilst another was Hitman, Navy Seal, and Roadie for Dokken.
So, yeah, it was going to be weird. Disney originally picked the comic up for adaptation in 2010 but dropped it two years later when Universal picked it up and ran with. Names like Marc Forster and 'John Wick' veterans David Leitch and Chad Stahelski were mooted as possible directors, however 'Breaking Bad' alum Michelle MacLaren was officially locked in for the role.
As it stands, Universal have yet to official confirm anything beyond its removal from the June 2019 release slot and given how tumultuous the pre-production has been so far, it's anyone's guess if it actually gets off the ground at all.