We are already in the second half of March. Black Widow is supposed to release the latest at the beginning of May internationally. There is still no sign of a new poster or trailer that would signify it is still aiming for that release date. It was only a few days ago that some BTS pictures made their way online. It was the first real sign of life from the film that was delayed by an entire year. Disney also stated during their Annual Meeting of Shareholders that they are still sticking to a theatrical release. Well, in a recent interview with Bloomberg Television, Disney’s CEO Bob Chapek seems to have backpedaled a bit on that comment.
Our situation and our conditions change. Just a few weeks ago, theaters in New York and Los Angeles weren’t even open. Now, all of a sudden they’re open, so we’re waiting to see how prospective theatergoers respond to these reopenings. We’re going to remain flexible. We’ll make the call probably at the last minute in terms of how these films come to market, whether it’s Black Widow or any other title.
Now, the interesting thing to note is that Chapek seems to be slowly opening up to a possible Disney+ release. He remains strong on his belief in the theatrical window, but also seems to hint at the dynamic market redefining their current approach.
We think it’s important for building our franchises. At the same time, we don’t think it’s the only way to do it. … We’ll see what happens over the next couple of months. So much is changing, it’s such a dynamic environment. It’s really hard to predict what’s going to happen with consumer behavior in the next month as it comes to re-emergence back into the world of normal. We’ll be watching the call carefully and make the call when we have to.
It looks like the chances of a Disney+ release are on the tables to some capacity. Disney cannot drag out the film’s release, as it already has been postponed by an entire year. They also have Shang-Chi and the Legends of the Ten Rings releasing in July followed by Eternals in November. If they truly make a “last-minute” decision, they will have to start advertising it soon to hit that May release date.