Last week, people had some hope of movie theaters returning from being closed after some remote theaters in China opened. Then word came out that older movies, including the Avengers films, would be re-released to get people back in theaters when there were no new releases. Now things have changed again.
Variety reports this morning that while 500 more theaters in China were planning to reopen, they’ve now been ordered shuttered again:
Around 500 theaters across the country had attempted to re-open, but seen little financial benefit from doing so, with screenings averaging less than a person a day and a national daily box office intake in the low thousands of dollars.
There is no word on when they will be allowed to reopen.
We’re likely going to see something similar here in the US. It’s very possible that theaters won’t reopen here until later in the fall (meaning the recent Wonder Woman 1984 delay to August won’t stick), and even when they do reopen it will likely be similar to China where people will want to still avoid crowds and theaters won’t be packed…no matter what movie opens then.
That puts studios into unknown territory where they’re facing the possibility of movies “bombing” in US theaters because of the pandemic and people’s fears of crowds. Which means they’re going to be taking a hard look at the other avenues they have to make money of content they have sitting collecting dust. And there are going to be some people who are going to have a very hard time adjusting to that new future…