COVID-19 is a world-changing virus which is impacting everyone’s day-to-day life. People are out of work, businesses have closed and there’s stockpiling food and supplies. It’s like something straight out of a disaster movie.
On the movie front, productions have been shut down, cinemas across the globe have shut and movies which were scheduled for release have been bumped to later in the year or next year (see No Time To Die and Fast and The Furious 9), taken off schedules indefinitely (A Quiet Place Part II, Mulan, Black Widow) or bumped to a VOD release (Trolls World Tour). Even the Cannes Film Festival has been postponed from May 12-23, to potentially June or July.
The closure of cinemas in the US also means that a slew of movies which were currently on release have had their streaming dates moved-up. This means that films including Bloodshot, Birds Of Prey, The Way Back, The Invisible Man and Frozen II will be hitting homes in the near future.
This could potentially be a real game changer with regards to movie releasing. It could be the end of the traditional model, with studios segueing between streaming and theatrical release, or even having a shorter timeframe between when a film is on the big screen and when it hits VOD. The nimbleness of how this is all happening means that failing movies could be pulled from screens and dumped on VOD with ease, softening the financial blow and recouping costs faster.
Whatever happens, the world and the world of cinema has changed for ever.