With movie theaters closing and studios pushing back theatrical release dates or turning to VODs due to the global coronavirus pandemic, Disney has also followed suit and updated the release calendars for its upcoming movies to accommodate for the unprecedented times.
Black Widow will now be released on November 6, 2020. The Marvel superhero adventure, starring Scarlett Johansson and Florence Pugh, was slated to hit theaters on May 1 and consequently will take the place of the other Marvel adventure The Eternals. Because of Black Widow’s push back, Disney has now updated the release dates of its movies to be the following:
The Eternals on February 12, 2021;
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on May 7, 2021;
Doctor Strange on November 5, 2021;
Thor: Love and Thunder on February 18, 2022;
Black Panther 2 will still debut on May 6, 2022;
Captain Marvel 2 set for release on July 8, 2022;
The animated Pixar film Soul is still set for its opening weekend on June 19, 2020, while the live-action remake of Mulan has been pushed to July 24, 2020, taking the slot previously occupied by Jungle Cruise. However, the global pandemic remains uncertain, even for the summer, there is no guarantee that theaters will reopen by then. Sources at Disney continue to monitor the situation as the release dates of the upcoming summer films has a chance of being postponed.
Jungle Cruise, the family film starring Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt, will then be released on July 20, 2021. Harrison Ford’s Indiana Jones 5, initially set for summer of 2021, has been pushed back to release on July 29, 2022. Sci-fi film Artemis Fowl, previously set to release on May 29 this year, will make its way on Disney Plus instead, skipping the theatrical debut. Ryan Reynold’s action comedy film Free Guy has also been pushed back by Disney from July 3, 2020 to December 11, 2020. Disney’s Bob’s Burgers: The Movie, based on the popular animated TV series by Loren Bouchard, has been postponed to April 9, 2021 from its July 17 initial release.
Even with release dates set in the summer and beyond, major studios like Disney can not predict when cinemas will reopen their entire businesses to the public. With production shut down for Disney movies like Doctor Strange and Shang-Chi, companies are left more uncertain if they can complete these big projects in time for their anticipated new release dates.