With a little help from James Bond, a gritty street-racing Vin Diesel, and a jet-soaring Tom Cruise, it was supposed to be the year of female superheroes. Instead, films like ‘Wonder Woman 1984,’ Disney’s ‘Mulan’ remake,’ and others that were anticipated to be among the year’s biggest ended up streaming online, while others were pushed back to prevent the coronavirus outbreak.
It’s a reality that would have been unthinkable just a few years ago when these movies were approved. After all, traditional Hollywood studios don’t spend hundreds of millions of dollars on a film just to watch it for the first time with their audiences at home.
With theatres closed for most of the year, Hollywood studios have been forced to recalculate a film release calendar that has been entirely thrown off by the ongoing global health crisis. Industry experts, on the other hand, feel that the current juncture is a watershed moment that the epidemic will not erase.
Streaming is more popular than ever, and movie theatres are facing an existential threat unlike any other. It’s not an exaggeration to say that the film landscape will never be the same again until the world has recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Due to the pandemic-related shutdown of most theatres across the country, studios look to have few options for their most important films. ‘You either sell to the streamer or die inside a theatre,’ says Schuyler Moore of the entertainment law firm Greenberg Glusker. ‘Choose one.’
As a result, the cinematic scene in 2020 will be dominated by eye-catching, frequently mind-boggling transactions. Each of the major Hollywood studios has taken a different method to deal with the epidemic.
The company does not have a streaming service to distribute its films through. As a result, the studio has become one of the most aggressive sellers, selling ‘Coming 2 America,’ the long-awaited sequel to the Eddie Murphy classic, to Amazon Studios for $125 million and sending Aaron Sorkin’s latest film, ‘The Trial of the Chicago 7,’ to Netflix.
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