You’re gonna have to wait a bit longer to see David Harbour as Hellboy. Summit Entertainment announced today that it’s going to be releasing the Hellboy reboot in theaters four months later than expected. While the film as originally set to open on January 11, 2019, in the doldrums of the worst movie going month of the year, Hellboy will now get a chance to shine on April 12, 2019. That puts the film directly up against the Robert Downey Jr.-led Universal film The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle, but also opening a week after Warner Bros.’ Shazam!—although these two comic book adaptations could not have more different tones.
Neil Marshall (The Descent) directs the reboot from a new story crafted by comics creator Mike Mignola, but all signs point to this being an R-rated version of the story. Mila Jovovich plays the film’s villain, Ian McShane is in the role of Professor Bloom, and Daniel Dae Kim plays Major Ben Daimio.
Previously, Harbour explained how his interpretation of the character would be different than Ron Perlman’s version in the Guillermo del Toro movies:
“There are things that I’m gonna do that are different. Hellboy is the same character from the comics and from what Ron did, there are certain things that are the same thing, but I do think that—I don’t know, there’s a different approach because I sort of highlight different things, I think, than Ron does. Ron sort of embraces this machismo in himself and in Hellboy, and I really like it and it’s super fun and it’s a super fun performance, but I think Hellboy has a certain psycho dynamic where occasionally he has to prove that he’s the lion, has to roar, and I think he struggles with his own masculinity. But I don’t think he needs that as much as maybe those other movies. I have a bit of a different take on his capability or his slickness. I sort of think that for me he’s a little less skilled at constructing that persona.”
This release date shift is probably for the best, and honestly most didn’t assume that January date was going to stick anyway. While some studios have had success in that month, it puts a certain stain on the film since January is usually a dumping ground for studio scraps. There are exceptions like Split (and the sequel Glass is still slated for this January), but they’re few and far between, and even then they’re usually lower budgeted fare. With the April date, Hellboy is now poised to go up against the big dogs, which suggests confidence from Summit.