Maleficent 2 is still happening, and while star Angelina Jolie has confirmed that she is returning, now it's time for a director. Deadline is reporting that Joachim Rønning, one of the co-directors for Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, has been brought on to direct the sequel.
Jez Butterworth and Linda Woolverton had been working on the script for producer Joe Roth, we've been told. Rønning has also been attached to direct the screen version of Michael Crichton's last novel Micro for Amblin Entertainment and producer Frank Marshall; he is also expected back on the next Pirates installment for Disney and Bruckheimer. Rønning is also working with Bruckheimer writing and attached to direct Origins, an original pitch that Paramount picked up pre-emptively. His brother Andreas is working with him on the script.
At the moment, Disney doesn't have a release date, but we can expect that Maleficent 2 will start filming sometime in 2018. If that's the case, we could see it coming out sometime in 2019 or 2020. April 3rd, 2020 is an open Disney release date along with March 12th, 2021, but that last one seems a little late. If they have a director and most of a script, which is sounds like they do, 2021 is probably a little too far off.