Impact of COVID-19 on movie industry

Coronavius (COVID-19) outbreak, probably the biggest pandemic of 21st century, unfortunately turned out to be more serious than initially thought and now is spreading fast around the world which resulted in deaths, lockdowns, borders closing, food and supplies shortage, panic among people etc. COVID-19 is impacting everyone and everything, from economics, tourism to movie industry.

Cinemas in Italy, China, Spain and France have suspended operations, and in the North America many  theaters were operating at reduced capacity which resulted in worst weekend at the North American box office since September 2001.

So amid the global threat of COVID-19 many movies are postponed and many productions are put on hold. First, a week ago, MGM delayed release of long awaited 25th James Bond movie, No Time to Die, from April 10 to November 25 in the US. Many Hollywood studios claimed they won’t change the release schedules for their upcoming films but that changed quickly. So let’s take a look which movies were delayed from their original release schedules.

No Time to Die

Original release date: April 10 2020

New release date: November 25 2020

No Time to Die, 25th James Bond film, was the first major movie tentpole to change its release date. Directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga (True Detective, Beasts of No Nation, Maniac) and starring Daniel Craig (Casino Royale, Skyfall, Knives Out, Layer Cake), Rami Malek (Mr Robot, Bohemian Rhapsody), Ana de Armas (Blade Runner 2049, Knives Out), Léa Seydoux (Spectre, Beauty and the Beast, The Grand Budapest Hotel), Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds, Django Unchained, The Zero Theorem, Alita), Naomie Harris (Skyfall, Rampage), Ralph Fiennes (The Constant Gardener, Harry Potter, Spectre, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Schindler’s List), Ben Whishaw (Perfume, Cloud Atlas) and Jeffrey Wright (Westworld, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire), No Time To Die was originally scheduled for April 10,  and now it will be released on November 25 in the US.

Official description:

James Bond has left active service. His peace is short-lived when Felix Leiter, an old friend from the CIA, turns up asking for help, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.

A Quiet Place Part II

Original release date: March 20 2020

New release date: TBD

A sequel to surpise 2018 hit A Quiet Place Part II was originally scheduled for March 20 release but it’s now been delayed indefinitely. Director and writer John Krasinski (The Office) announced the delay on Twitter:

Too bad because first reactions for A Quiet Place II were overwhelmingly positive.

A Quiet Place Part II is directed by John Krasinski (A Quiet Place), and stars Emily Blunt (Edge of Tomorrow, Looper, Mary Poppins Returns, Sicario), Millicent Simmonds (A Quiet Place), Cillian Murphy (28 Days Later, Peaky Blinders, Batman Begins, Red Eye, Dunkirk), Djimon Hounsou (Guardians of the Galaxy, Blood Diamond) and John Krasinski (The Office, A Quiet Place, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan).

Official description:

Following the events at home, the Abbott family now face the terrors of the outside world. Forced to venture into the unknown, they realize the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats lurking beyond the sand path.

Fast 9

Original release date: May 22 2020

New release date: April 2 2021

F9, latest installment in a never ending Fast & Furious franchise, has been pushed back from May 2020 to April 2, 2021.

Franchise star Vin Diesel made the announcement on social media – “We feel all the love and the anticipation you have for the next chapter in our saga. That’s why it’s especially tough to let you know that we have to move the release date of the film. It’s become clear that it won’t be possible for all of our fans around the world to see the film this May. While we know there is disappointment in having to wait a little while longer, this move is made with the safety of everyone as our foremost consideration.”

F9 was scheduled to be released in the United States on Memorial Day weekend (May 22, 2020). This push back is a blow to movie theaters as “Fast & Furious” sequels are huge money makers (past two Fast and Furious movies, Furious 7 and The Fate of the Furious, each earned over $1 billion worldwide).

Fast 9 is directed by Justin Lin (Star Trek Beyond), who previously helmed Fast & Furious 4-6 and Tokio Drift and stars Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, John Cena, Charlize Theron, Helen Mirren and Jordana Brewster. Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham, who starred in last year spinoff Hobbs & Shaw, are not going to appear in this latest installment.

Official description:

Cypher enlists the help of Jakob, Dom’s younger brother to take revenge on Dom and his team. 

Mulan

Original release date: March 27 2020

New release date: TBD

Disney’s latest live-action remake, Mulan, based on animated movie from 1998, has also been delayed indefinitely from its original release date of March 27. Directed by Niki Caro (The Zookeeper’s Wife, McFarland, USA) , Mulan is about  a young Chinese woman disguised as a male warrior in order to save her father. 

Official description:

A young Chinese maiden disguises herself as a male warrior in order to save her father. A live-action feature film based on Disney’s ‘Mulan.’

The New Mutants

Original release date: April 3 2020

New release date: TBD

The New Mutants, an X-Men horror spinoff from director Josh Boone (The Fault in Our Stars), was already postponed couple of times and after finally getting a release date, premiere has been postponed once more. No new date has been given at this time.

Official description:

Five young mutants, just discovering their abilities while held in a secret facility against their will, fight to escape their past sins and save themselves.

Black Widow

Original release date: May 1 2020

New release date: TBD

Black Widow, a first standalone movie for Natasha Romanoff a.k.a. Black Widow and first MCU movie from Phase 4 was scheduled for May 1st 2020 release.  And now, just days after releasing a final trailer, Disney announced they’ll postpone a release of a long awaited superhero movie. Unfortunately new date hasn’t been set.

Official description:

A film about Natasha Romanoff in her quests between the films Civil War and Infinity War.

Antlers

Original release date: April 17 2020

New release date: TBD

Disney / Fox Searchlight delayed the release of their horror title Antlers, which was scheduled to open on April 17. This one also didn’t get new premiere date. Directed by Scott Cooper (Crazy Heart, Out of the Furnace, Black Mass), Antlers is story about a school teacher (Keri Russell) and her sheriff brother (Jesse Plemons) who discover that a young student has a dangerous secret with frightening consequences.

Official description:

In an isolated Oregon town, a middle-school teacher and her sheriff brother become embroiled with her enigmatic student whose dark secrets lead to terrifying encounters with a legendary ancestral creature who came before them.

Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway

Original release date: April 3 2020

New release date: August 7 2020

Peter Rabbit 2: The Runway, a sequel to 2018 hit from Sony, has also been postponed but this one did get a new release date – August 7. It has been moved from it’s original release dates – March 27 in the U.K. and Europe and April 3 in the U.S.

 

Impact on ongoing productions

COVID-19 also had an impact on movies and TV shows that are currently in production. This list includes new take on Batman from director Matt Reeves, Jurassic World: Dominion, Stranger Things Season 4, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier and WandaVision.

Production on The Batman (starring Robert Pattinson, Colin Farell, Zoë Kravitz, Paul Dano and Andy Serkis) has been suspended for two weeks and for now original release date (June 25, 2021) is still intact but it’s of course unclear whether this suspension will have an effect.

Universal halted production on Jurassic World: Dominionsame goes for all their live-action films. Jurassic World: Dominion is being directed and written by Colin Trevorrow  and stars Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Sam Neill, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum.

Netflix announced that they are suspending production of all their movies and TV shows for two weeks, and this list includes forth season of Stranger Things also. Disney is pausing production on all of its live-action films (including the Marvel film Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings) and all Marvel’s Disney Plus Shows which includes The Falcon and The Winter SoldierWandaVision and Loki. Other Disney films with paused production includes among others Home Alone, The Last Duel, Peter Pan & Wendy, The Little Mermaid and Nightmare Alley.

Paramount Pictures also delayed its plans for a three-week shoot in Italy of the latest installment from Mission: Impossible franchise. Mission: Impossible 7 stars Tom Cruise and it is directed by Christopher McQuarrie (director of Jack Reacher and writer of Usual Suspect) who previously helmed 2015’s Rogue Nation and 2018’s Fallout.

We’ll keep you posted about new updates. Until then, take this situation with COVID-19 seriously, don’t go to very crowded places, don’t endanger yourself, your family and elders … Stay at home and spend the time with your family, with your loved ones, learn something new, work on some interesting project, read a book or watch some good movie or TV show :).

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