After pulling a number of highly anticipated movies from its schedule due to the coronavirus pandemic, Disney has revealed new release dates stretching all the way into 2022 (via The Hollywood Reporter).
One of the Mouse Houses’s biggest 2020 releases, Mulan had already missed its March 27th target date and will now storm theaters on July 24th. That could be viewed as somewhat optimistic given the trajectory of the pandemic, but with the film industry expected to lose $20 billion because of the health crisis, perhaps a little hope isn’t a bad thing.
The trick is that July 24th was previously occupied by Jungle Cruise, the Disney park ride adaptation starring Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt. That flick has been pushed a full year to July 30th, 2021. That’s how the dominos should be expected to fall throughout Hollywood, as evident by the major shift in the upcoming Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.
Black Widow was previously taken off its May 1st release date, and is now due on November 6th. That date, of course, used to belong to Eternals, which has moved to February 12th, 2021. That pushes Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings to May 7th, 2021, which forces Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness to jump to November 5th, 2021. Thor: Love and Thunder flies off that date to land on February 28th, 2022. Thankfully, that’s as far as the MCU chain reaction stretches, as Black Panther 2 is still targeting May 6th, 2022 and Captain Marvel 2 actually got pushed forward two weeks to July 8th, 2022.
In another interesting move, Disney has chosen to skip a theatrical release for Artemis Fowl, the Kenneth Branagh-directed adaptation of Eoin Colfer’s novels starring Colin Farrell, Ferdia Shaw, Josh Gad, and Judi Dench. Instead of entering cinemas on May 29th, the film (which looks like Fortnite ate Men in Black, bred with The Kingsmen while watching Thor: The Dark World, and then that offspring married Harry Potter at a Spy Kids-themed wedding) will go directly to Disney+ on an undisclosed date. It was originally intended for an August 9th, 2019 release before a non-pandemic related delay.
Meanwhile, Ryan Reynolds’ video gamer actioner Free Guy has shifted from July 3rd to December 11th, while Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch has moved from July 24th to October 16th. (Those films are coming respectively from 20th Century and Searchlight, Disney’s new banners after purchasing Fox.) Finally, plans for the fifth Indian Jones movie have moved from July 9th, 2021 to July 29th, 2022. James Mangold is reportedly in talks to direct.
All this rearranging hasn’t impacted the planned releases of Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story (December 18th) or Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel (December 25th). However, a handful of titles have yet to be re-dated: The Personal History of David Copperfield, Antlers, Woman in the Window, and the eternally delayed The New Mutants.