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Disney Postpones Films Indefinitely – Mulan, Starwars and Avatar

Disney Postpones Films Indefinitely – Mulan, Starwars and Avatar

Disney announced major changes to the studio’s release calendar.

Disney Postpones Films Indefinitely – Mulan, Starwars and Avatar

Most notably, the epic shakeup of film debuts involves delaying its “Star Wars” movies and “Avatar” sequels by a year. Disney has also pulled “Mulan” from the studio’s release calendar as cases of coronavirus continue to rise across the country and new outbreaks roil major foreign markets.

“Over the last few months, it’s become clear that nothing can be set in stone when it comes to how we release films during this global health crisis, and today that means pausing our release plans for ‘Mulan’ as we assess how we can most effectively bring this film to audiences around the world,” a Disney spokesperson said.

This is the fourth big-screen delay for “Mulan.” It was initially scheduled to debut on March 27, but the film was pulled just before its planned release as coronavirus first began to spread in North America. Disney moved the film to July 24 and then to Aug. 21.

The studio still plans to dominate moviegoing around the holidays when theatres are hopefully able to reopen. Each year between 2022 and 2028, Disney will release a new “Star Wars” adventure or “Avatar” follow-up.

James Cameron’s long-delayed sequels to Avatar” will now premiere every other December starting in 2022 as follows: “Avatar 2” (Dec. 16, 2022), “Avatar 3” (Dec. 20, 2024), “Avatar 4” (Dec. 18, 2026) and “Avatar 5” (Dec. 22, 2028). The second “Avatar” installment, which was originally aiming to open in 2014, will debut 13 years after the first film.

Meanwhile, a trio of “Star Wars” movies will debut around Christmas every other year starting in 2023. The first of three films will launch on Dec. 22, 2023, and two follow-ups will hit theaters Dec. 19, 2025, and Dec. 17, 2027. The studio has kept its cards close to its chest about what those films will entail.

It’s highly likely that release dates for any movie from any studio will remain fluid for the foreseeable future. There’s still no sense of when cinemas in New York City and Los Angeles, two of the biggest moviegoing markets in the country, will be able to reopen. Overseas, however, could be a saving grace for the exhibition community, since multiplexes in other parts of the world have been more successful in their plans to safely reopen.

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