"Minions: The Rise of Gru" "Minions: The Rise of Gru"

The agitated yellow critters have retreated again. Minions: The Rise Of Gru, the prequel-meets-sequel in the Minions and Despicable Me franchise, has been delayed by a year. It is now due to open theatrically on July 1, 2022.

The latest feature from Illumination Entertainment was initially set for July 3, 2020. Universal pulled it from that date after Illumination Mac Guff, the company’s Paris-based animation studio, temporarily shut in the first lockdown, delaying production. The film was then rescheduled for July 2, 2021.

Universal has also moved F9, the latest Fast & Furious installment. The film has been pushed along from May 28 to June 25, 2021. Deadline writes that it was shifted due to concerns over when major overseas markets will fully reopen.

Both F9 and The Rise of Gru are major tentpoles from hugely lucrative franchises, and the studio appears to be taking no chances with their releases. The Despicable Me franchise is the highest-grossing in animation history, bringing in over $3.7 billion at the global box office.

The Rise of Gru is an origin story for Gru, the villain who comes to command the Minions. Kyle Balda, who co-directed Minions and Despicable Me 3, is the lead director here, with Brad Ableson (who has worked as a storyboard and character layout artist on The Simpsons) and Jonathan del Val (co-director, The Secret Life of Pets 2) as his co-directors. Steve Carell and Pierre Coffin return to voice Gru and the Minions respectively.

Studio animated films currently slated to come out before July 2, 2021 include Universal’s Spirit Riding Free (June 4), Sony’s Vivo (June 4), and Disney-Pixar’s Luca (June 18).

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Alex Dudok de Wit

Alex Dudok de Wit

Alex Dudok de Wit is Associate Editor of Cartoon Brew.

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