Movie Mayhem Amid COVID-19
Among the many things affected by the Coronavirus, movies have definitely been one of them. In March, when the Coronavirus was beginning to become a reality in the United States as well as many places throughout the world, several production studios released their movies straight to digital or cut the “in theatre” release short due to the fact that many states already enacted the “stay-at-home” order that made it impossible for people to actually go to the theatres to watch the movies. According to Vanity Fair, movies such as Bad Boys for Life, DoLittle, The Gentlemen, Birds of Prey, Sonic the Hedgehog, Downhill, The Way Back, The Hunt, Emma, Call of the Wild, The Invisible Man, Onward, I Still Believe, and Bloodshot are now all available to stream digitally when they would normally still be playing in theatres.
Many other studios have delayed the release of their movies entirely due to the “stay-at-home” order and in anticipation that during the summer people will not go out to the movies due to the fear of the virus. According to The Wrap, movies such as No Time to Die, A Quiet Place Part II, Mulan, Black Widow, Wonder Woman 1984, Top Gun: Maverick, Candyman, The Spongebob Movie: Sponge On The Run, and Soul were slotted to release in the spring and summer and are now slotted for a fall and winter release. Other movies such as The Fast Saga, Jungle Cruise, Greyhound, Scoob!, Minions: The Rise of Gru, The Woman in the Window, and a slew of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s movies have been pushed until 2021 or later. Mission Impossible 7, The Nightingale, Jurassic World: Dominion, The Batman, Cinderella, Fantastic Beasts 3, and Uncharted are now all under delayed production because the cast and crews cannot physically get together on-set.
Delayed movie releases are a disappointment to say the least but there may even be greater ramifications from these delays and the whole situation overall. At this point, most non-essential businesses have been shut down for close to a month and a half. This includes movie theatres and cinemas. With some movies being released straight to digital and others being delayed for several months, there will be a large amount of time where people will just not be going out to the theatres to watch movies. According to variety.com, cinema giant AMC Theatres is on the brink of filing for bankruptcy. The company has already been weighed down by a $4.9 billion debt that was used for renovations to entice more people to come to the theatres. On top of that, theatres will be shut down for at least a couple more months. The reality is that the Coronavirus has and will have a major impact on the movie industry as a whole. Only time will tell how bad this impact will be.