Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, independent movie theaters and drive-ins have been staying afloat over the past few months with re-releases of classic films and popular recent releases. A few new films have been released at drive-ins including The Wretched and How to Build a Girl, but only now are we beginning to see new releases in actual movie theaters in the US.
The first new release since the nationwide closures, Unhinged, got the box office started with a small but significant $4 million opening weekend. Major chains including AMC, Cinemark, and Regal have begun to play the film in states where it is allowed, with Unhinged airing in 1823 theaters across 44 states. The key markets of California and New York, however, still remain off limits.
Unhinged, starring Russell Crowe, shows the intense road-rage-sparked chase between a young woman and a stranger who will not stop until he hunts her down. It was initially scheduled to be a summer movie, and held onto its goal and attained an August release, making it the first new film to hit theaters. So far the film’s international total is at $13 million.
The New Mutants and religious drama Fatima are to arrive this coming week, followed by Bill and Ted Face the Music. These upcoming releases will be even stronger indicators on whether or not movie theaters will be able to make a quick recovery and if they hold up in the face of numerous streaming sites and On-Demand.