An apparent increase in COVID19 cases in the US is causing many theater chains and studios to look again at their restart plans. Even if theaters can re-open there is no guarantee that anyone will turn out for a movie.
Deadline has carried a story that there is a review set notionally by the big studios and the main chains after the July 4th weekend this week. Nolan’s Tenet has already shifted several times and was eventually forced to abandon July. Unhinged, Broken Hearts Gallery and Mulan are also jumping around and according to Deadline will now be moved together, at least by two weeks.
The later everything gets in the year and it runs into serious congestion ranging from latest 007 adventure No Time To Die, to Wonder Woman 1984 and Dune. Therefore the entire slate remains uncertain and it may be that after summer 2020 is written off, so is the rest of 2020 and we end up with one hell of a 2021.
How long can major studios survive without box-office income? And will there be movie theaters left for them to open into? Will shifting out past September force theaters to look again at premium VOD into homes, breaking the fragile covenant between studios and distributors?
Will we ever get to go to the movies again? Will we want to after a summer of home convenience, while drinking home measures?