Bad Boys 3 just can't seem to catch a break. The movie has been trying to get off the ground for years, and every time it seems like the movie gains some momentum, something pushes against it. This time, it's a pretty significant setback as director Joe Carnahan has left the project. And what's worse is that the reasons he left appear to be a little murky, which could signal a little bit more deep-rooted trouble for the movie.
The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that Bad Boys 3, officially titled Bad Boys for Life, has lost Joe Carnahan, but it is the potential reason that is the biggest cause for concern. According to their report, one of their sources say that the director left because of scheduling conflicts, which wouldn't be that big of a deal. But several other sources claim that Joe Carnahan left over the ever vague but rarely good "creative differences" issue. It was also noted that Sony is already looking for a replacement director and possibly even a new writer, which could delay things a bit. Carnahan also wrote the most recent draft of the script for Bad Boys 3.
Over the past month or so it has started to seem like Joe Carnahan was either going to have to drop a project or two, or possibly figure out how to clone himself. Outside of Bad Boys 3, he wrote the script for Sony's Uncharted movie, he is working on a remake of the Indonesian action flick The Raid and it was also recently reported that he is writing and possibly directing the X-Force movie for Fox. So his plate is very full and something had to give. It looks like that thing was this Bad Boys sequel. So the scheduling conflict thing would actually make sense.
That said, it is possible that Joe Carnahan knew that Bad Boys 3 wasn't really working out and he started lining up other projects to fill out his schedule. At this point in time, it isn't totally clear, but either way Sony needs a new director. The movie was reportedly going to start shooting this fall but with a director not currently attached and a potential rewrite coming, that start date could easily wind up being delayed.
At the moment, Sony has Bad Boys for Life pegged for a November 8, 2018, release date. If they get a director hired quickly and the script rewrites aren't overly significant, that date could still work, but it seems likely that date could now shift. THR notes that Bad Boys 3 is considered a "hot ticket," because the project is considered to be a sure thing, despite the setbacks. So they should be able to find plenty of interested directors. Martin Lawrence has his schedule seemingly clear enough to start filming as soon as the movie is ready, but Will Smith is a busy guy, so that could be a bit more tricky. We will be sure to keep you up to date as more details on the project become available.