STOP Giving Films Release Dates During Covid-19! | COME @ ME, BRO!

Studios need to stop giving delayed movies exact release dates in the age of Covid-19!

The concept of my column, Come @ Me, Bro, is to present a strong, unpopular opinion that I actually believe. All the opinions are not made up just to incite angry discord. Unlike Twitter users who tweet an unpopular opinion only to say, “Don’t @ Me,” I actually want to hear from you! Whether you agree, or more likely, disagree with my statements. This week; why studios need to stop giving out new release dates during the Covid-19 pandemic!

Okay, this is one you may actually agree with me on, but it doesn’t mean it doesn’t really piss me off.

Since March, movie studios have been delaying their films… over and over again… with seemingly a new release date every few months. And it’s annoying as s**t. With everything up in the air until we have a vaccine and we know audiences are ready to return to movie theatres, why peg a specific release date at all?

Don’t Give Me Hope

As per our article yesterday, Disney had delayed their slate of Marvel Cinematic Universe films once again.

Black Widow, originally slated for a May 2020 release, was moved to November, and has since been moved to May 7, 2021. This means the title’s release date has been moved an entire year back from the original release date. This, of course, causes a rippling effect, pushing Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings from Black Widow‘s new release date to July 7, 2021. Oddly, this switched the orders of releases pushing Eternals back to November 5, 2021.

Related: Black Widow, Other Marvel Studios Films Get Pushed — What does This Mean For Disney+ Shows?

DC has seen similar issues, switching Wonder Woman 1984 from June, to October, and now Christmas day.

Most frustrating were Tenet and Mulan, which kept playing chicken from July and into August. Both films received so many release date changes in the span of a little over a month that it was maddening!

Of course, Mulan eventually moved to a premium model on Disney+. Tenet went forward with a theatrical release, not doing amazingly in the US for a Nolan film. This shows American audiences are not ready to return to theatres. But will that change by November when we are set to get No Time To Die? Apparently Disney doesn’t think so.

With no end to the Covid pandemic in sight, why give these films release dates at all? It gives audiences false hope.  I’m sure this is meant for marketers, and so audiences don’t lose interest, but COME ON! Why trust these latest release dates? What will keep them from changing again? There are too many unknowns.

Studios With The Right Ideas… Sort Of

Some studios or maybe specific producers, have been more ballsy in the delays of their release dates, but it still might not be enough.

Fast and Furious 9 and Top Gun: Maverick immediately jumped an entire year into 2021. F9: The Fast Saga currently has a release date of April 2, 2021 and Maverick jumped to an even later release date of July 2, 2021.

This still might not be enough, based on the previously-mentioned unknowns the pandemic has produced. Even these release dates may shift again.

I’m not trying to get political, at all, but here’s one indication of when a vaccine for Covid-19 may be available to the American people. This passage comes from a USA Today article from September 16th:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Robert R. Redfield told a Senate panel that a vaccine may not be available to the American public until summer or fall 2021 and that masks are “the most important, powerful public health tool we have” — possibly even more effective than a vaccine.

I’m no scientist, nor do I pretend to be. And this is only one source. But this sounds bad.

RELATED: 18 Years Later, SPIDER-MAN Has The Most Brutal Finale Of Any Superhero Film | Come @ Me Bro!

I’m certainly not going to a movie theatre until the new vaccine is out in the wild and widely accepted. This could mean fall 2021 or even winter as the vaccine has to be out for a while before it will make a difference. That being said, I feel I am being more cautious side than a lot of other cinephiles who cannot wait to get back to the movies.

Again, no one knows what will happen in the next year. Maybe people will return to the theatre regardless. Perhaps the pandemic will slow before a vaccine is complete? Maybe we’ll get one sooner?

No matter the circumstance, I think it is sill that studios are giving exact release dates. I feel it is smarter to just say “2021” or “TBD” for now.


Now, the fun part. Without making this political, do you agree studios should avoid giving exact release dates? Disagree?

You know what I think, so I want you to Come @ Me, Bro! Let’s do this in the comments below!

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