Film productions in the key outbreak zones have changed their schedules, changed location, or have shut down completely. Sony Pictures closed its offices in London, Paris, and Poland after an employee was thought to have been exposed to the virus. The Writers Guild of America and SAG-AFTRA have canceled all in-person meetings. The Hengdian World Studios in Dongyang, China, has closed indefinitely.

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Disney+ released Cruella in theaters and for premier customers and made more than $20 million on each channel in the first weekend alone. The delay in the current slate of movies also puts future movies up in the air. Many studios are focused on managing the logistics of their movies that are currently in production or pre-production instead of actively hunting for new films. Cinema revenue fell slightly in 2019, with overall box-office receipts down 4.1% from 2018 at just below $10.4 billion.

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Many blockbusters originally scheduled to be released since mid-March 2020 have been postponed or canceled around the world, with film productions also halted. This, in turn, created openings for independent cinema productions to receive wider exposure. The multiplex industry suffered huge losses and business was impacted significantly due to multiple rounds of lockdown in the country.

A Hybrid Model For The Industry

Oskar Eustis, artistic director of The Public Theater in New York, knows firsthand about the coronavirus. Eustis was hospitalized with COVID on March 10, and by the time he was released five days later, everything was shut down. “I came out into a world that had no theater, and it’s a different world,” he says. David Hancock, a media and entertainment analyst at Omdia, says more than 160 films were scheduled for release in 2020 and 2021 and that most were awaiting a big screen premiere as that remained the best way for movie-makers to maximise value. The latest edition of the James Bond franchise No Time to Die has been repeatedly postponed from its original April 2020 release date, and is scheduled to come out in the UK next month.

The Big Picture: Can Cinemas Survive Coronavirus?

UK cinemas, including this Odeon, were closed during Covid-19 lockdowns. In the past week, admissions have been more than two-and-a-half times Vue’s weekly average number for the past 18 months. “Our programme is eclectic and daring, including many foreign-­language films and emerging indie titles as well as blockbusters and classics, which keep our dedicated audience coming back for more,” says Hannaway. Patrons are also tempted by the luxurious auditorium with a fully stocked bar and table seating downstairs. Louxor Palais du Cinema is one of the most beautiful cinemas in Paris, with its art deco, ancient Egypt-­inspired décor. The crowning glory is its double-balconied main theatre named after the iconic Egyptian director Youssef Chahine.

"It's our job to try to make the future a better place," Eustis says. "It's our job to try to make the theater more democratic, more inclusive, more accessible, more anti-racist. That's what we've got to do. And so, I'm optimistic that we'll be able to continue doing that." "It has a lot to do with transforming our arts and culture institutions into arts and culture and civic institutions."

The Most Significant Social Impact Films Of 2020, All Streaming At Home

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On the same day, the release of Indian film Sooryavanshi, which was initially scheduled to release on March 24, was postponed indefinitely, and the release of F9 was pushed to April 2, 2021. With no further rescheduling options, Mulan was removed from the release calendar again. With both distributors and cinema chains playing chicken on who will stick to a date first, any release dates going forward are essentially placeholders. The unease of both parties will spark not only confusion to the public, but constant doubt on whether now is the right time. The ability to sustain a market with older titles is a gamble at best and if cinemas fail to hit attendance with such features, certain chains could end up in further crisis. In April 2020, ODEON owner Adam Aron banned all Universal films from his cinemas after the distributor claimed it would release their films to cinema and streaming on the same day in future, eradicating the unique window of exclusivity for cinemas.