No, you didn’t miss Transformers 2 . That’s still coming on June 24th.
But now, Paramount and DreamWorks have announced a July 1, 2011 release for Transformers 3. And yes, trades are using the made-up word “three-quel.”
According to Variety, Paramount announced the release date – as well as the fact that there would be a third film in order to claim the date for 2011, which is becoming increasingly crowded when it comes to genre film releases. The interesting thing with announcing the release date – that’s all Paramount has at this date. No script, no director, no stars have signed on.
As the trade suggests, Paramount and DreamWorks made the Transformers announcement in order to "save the date" and, in essence both claim the long Fourth of July weekend and warn other studios away from releasing their big films on that weekend. That strategy, however, hasn't been shown to have legs, as Marvel originally announced a July 15th, 2011 release for The Avengers, but later moved it after Warner Bros. announced the same date for the release of the second Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows film, the final film in the series. While there's now talk that the Marvel film was moved to possibly accomodate Jon Favreau as its director, observers felt that Marvel would blink in regards to the date regardless of production schedule, just to get out of the way of the Potter behemoth.
As of now, Transformers 3 has the July 1st weekend all to itself – though that may change as Marvel recently shuffled its upcoming film releases. Paramount also announced that Thor will be released on June 16, 2011 rather than May 20th, 2011. Paramount is distributing the film on behalf of Marvel.
Looking at the slate of comic-based and major genre films in the next couple of years:
Iron Man 2: May 7th, 2010
Twilight: Eclipse: June 30th, 2010
Inception (Christopher Nolan’s next film): July 16th, 2010
Jonah Hex: August 6th, 2010
Green Lantern: December 17th, 2010
Spider-Man 4: May 6, 2011
Thor: June 16th, 2011
Transformers 3: July 1st, 2011
The First Avenger: Captain America: July 22nd, 2011
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2: July 15th, 2011
The Avengers: July15th, 2012.