Devastating news for movie fans this week as multiple blockbusters are pushed back until 2021–or later.
There’s something of a chicken-and-egg situation right now in the cinema world. Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidinger claims that without blockbusters like No Time to Die on the schedule, there’s no point in keeping movie theaters open. Just announced recently, all Cineworld theaters in the UK and Regal Cinemas locations in the US will close October 8th and stay shut indefinitely.
However, if audiences don’t feel safe going to theaters, then studios aren’t going to waste their very expensive products–in other words, movies.
Just this week, multiple studios announced delays of six months or more on their films. Depending on whether the industry is able to bounce back in the next year or two, some previously announced films may never make it into production.
That looks like it might be the case for the Black Adam standalone movie starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Originally slated to premiere in December 2021, Black Adam now has no space on the calendar.
Even though casting news has continued to trickle in from DC and Warner Bros, it’s not clear when this project could move forward. The Rock has a lot of clout in Hollywood thanks to his proven record of family-friendly blockbusters. Black Adam is a much darker character, though, if you’ll excuse the pun. The comic book anti-hero is a riskier bet than, say, another Jumanji movie.
The DCEU also pushed back The Flash, Ezra Miller’s solo movie, until November 2022. The sequel to Shazam is now on hold until 2023.
Looking further out, Robert Pattinson’s The Batman won’t be arriving until March 2022. The production was hit hard by the pandemic. First, it was forced to shut down this spring as a general precaution. After they resumed filming, however, Pattinson tested positive for COVID and everything ground to a halt once again.
With so many delays in filming–and no guarantee that they won’t get shut down again–it makes sense to push the release date. Instead of October 2021, we’ll have to wait just a little bit longer. Unless things get even worse, in which case all bets are off.
It’s tough being a fan of Frank Herbert’s Dune. Adapting the sprawling sci-fi epic is a challenge. But releasing that movie in a pandemic is madness.
Denis Villeneuve’s adaptation was supposed to hit theaters in December 2020. However, Warner Bros. just announced that they’re shelving Dune until October 2021. Big-budget films like this one need to be blockbusters, which means opening as widely as possible.
Right now, the only blockbuster on the schedule for 2020 is Wonder Woman: 1984. We don’t know if the studio will ultimately decide to release it at Christmas and hope for the best, push it back to 2021, or pull a Mulan and try video-on-demand.
Weirdly enough, the studio moved the fourth Matrix film up the schedule. Originally delayed until 2022, Warner Bros. decided to move the release up to December 2021. To be fair, that’s still a year+ away. Literally anything could happen between now and then.