Film releases dates have changed so many times that at this point, it’s hard even to keep track of what’s coming out when. With the recent spikes in COVID-19 rates throughout the United States, it seems that even more delays are imminent. According to Deadline, studios have targeted July 4th as a date to evaluate the current landscape to assess if another delay is in order. Given the recent data, California’s governor pledging more stringent restrictions, and recent theater closures, it seems that this is inevitable. Now Deadline states that it will just be another two-week delay, but with most of August’s film slate now sliding into September, it will cause a domino effect.
Conjuring 3 was initially slated for release on September 11th but will likely be pushed into 2021. A Quiet Place 2 might be joining them in the new year as well. The King’s Man and Candyman will probably get forced to later in 2020, but at this point, it’s anyone’s guess when these films will be released. It’s hard to imagine theaters opening-up once these major titles get moved. AMC Theaters are already facing financial issues, and the longer this goes, the more likely those issues will boil up to the surface.
At this point, studios have to realize that the landscape for cinematic entertainment has changed. Universal has used this pandemic to test the viability of releasing top tier titles via on-demand with great success. AMC and Regal have tried to make an example of the studio by refusing to show their titles in their cinemas. These exhibitors want things to fall back to the way they were pre-COVID, but that’s not realistic. With the film slates in a constant state of flux, theaters are going to have to re-evaluate the importance of the theatric window. Studios are beginning to think outside the box so they can continue to flourish in this environment.