'Sicario' sequel cast news, release date: Screenwriter explains why Emily Blunt won't be in 'Soldado'

Actress Emily Blunt poses on the red carpet at a screening of her new film 'Sicario' in New York, September 14, 2015. | REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Earlier this year, news broke that Emily Blunt, the star of the 2015 crime thriller/drama "Sicario," will not be in its upcoming sequel, "Soldado."

The casting shake-up came as a surprise to fans of the first film, which, along with 2014's "Edge of Tomorrow," propelled Blunt into the action genre, allowing fans to see the actress in an entirely new light. But despite Blunt's stunning portrayal of FBI agent Kate Macer in "Sicario," screenwriter Taylor Sheridan recently revealed that there was just no way to fit her into the "Soldado" storyline.

In a recent interview with The Wrap, Sheridan spoke about the choice to not cast Blunt in the upcoming sequel, saying, "That was my decision, and at some point I'm going to have to talk to her about it."

"Her arc was complete... I couldn't figure out a way to write a character that would do her talent justice," he explained.

"That said, there could be room for Kate somewhere else down the road," Sheridan added.

In "Sicario," Blunt's Kate was part of a government task force intent on taking down a Mexican drug cartel. Benicio del Toro played CIA officer Alejandro Gillick while Josh Brolin played his partner, Matt Graver. Both del Toro and Brolin are returning for the sequel.

Meanwhile, in a chat with Collider this week, "Sicario" actor Jeffrey Donovan was asked whether "Soldado" will be more like a sequel or a spinoff of the first film.

"It's more of a stand-alone spin-off," he answered. "It's not a sequel or a prequel. It really is yet another examination told from this male point of view, rather than from a female point of view. It's pretty cool," Donovan added.

Filming for "Soldado" began this month in New Mexico. The sequel is currently without an official release date but is expected to premiere sometime in 2017.