The Coronavirus outbreak around the world has thrown practically every industry and the movie industry is no different. With theatres across the world being shuttered, some studios who had films on the brink of releasing, had to push them to an online release. Disney has a number of movies that were to be released this year and there was a lot of uncertainty around that too. Finally, the studio has announced that Artemis Fowl, one of the films to be released this year, will be going straight to Disney+ and not get a theatrical release.
Disney has announced that of all the films slated for release, Artemis Fowl will go straight to Disney+, with the date to be revealed soon. We already saw Disney bring Frozen 2 and Pixar’s Onward to the streaming service ahead of the original plan, given that people are turning to streaming to find respite from being home-bound.
Disney has also announced the reworked calendar for all Marvel films. Black Widow, which was to be the first Marvel film of 2020, set to open the summer, will now be released on November 6 2020. The Eternals, which was supposed to release on November 6, 2020, will now move to February 21, 2021. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings thus moves from its original February date to May 7, 2021. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness shifts from May 2021 to Nov. 5, 2021, and finally, Thor: Love and Thunder is now going to release in 2022. With respect to other Disney films such as Mulan, the movie’s release has now been rescheduled to July 24, 2020.
All these dates are once again subject to the prevalence of the Coronavirus, and whether theatres have opened by that time. Disney and other movie houses have a lot of money invested in their respective films, so it makes sense that they would want to recoup their investment through theatrical release. The Marvel franchise has been a massive cash cow for Disney, so it makes sense why the studio would rather delay the release of Marvel movies instead of putting it out on a digital platform. Even if the movie was behind a paywall, pirates would make sure the movies are available for free within days, causing huge financial loss to the studio.