Black Widow’s release date is likely to be delayed after the prevention measures recommended by the CDC.
The past several weeks have immobilized the world as the coronavirus becomes a worldwide epidemic. The disease has affected all dimensions of life, including Hollywood, which has cancelled conferences, postponed the production of films and TV shows, and delayed film releases. The Marvel Cinematic Universe also had to shift, with Loki and other Disney+ production shutdowns, as well as stopping of Shang-Chi and Legend of the Ten Rings.
Whether or not the Black Widow will begin a new era of MCU in May as previously announced is a question that continues to the full extent of Phase 4. Disney and Marvel Studios were reportedly reluctant to move Black Widow. However, the ever-changing nature of the virus makes daily life hopeless and less true. Even with the release of the final trailer for Scarlett Johansson’s solo film, the delay in Black Widow is now inevitable.
In their continuing efforts to limit crowds and prevent the spread of coronavirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced that it will not recommend any social gatherings of more than 50 people for the next eight weeks. The enforcement of this crowd control extends beyond the Black Widow’s May 1 release date and therefore limits the number of people that can be seen in theatres. Disney and Marvel Studios have yet to announce the delay, but the CDC’s latest recommendation makes it almost inevitable.
Major theatre chains such as AMC and Regal Cinemas have begun to limit audience size in the light of coronavirus before this announcement. They have also implemented guidelines for maximizing outdoor cinema at 50% capacity for those still interested in going to their destinations. Now, this suggestion by the CDC may further limit the capacity of some theatres. Even though the theatre chains will be open in the next eight weeks, Black Widow and other films will not be able to reach the audience much. So not only is Black Widow likely to move, but many more studios may soon announce delays to early summer films.
Now when Black Widow is late, Marvel Studios will have a more difficult time figuring out when the movie will arrive. Set between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War, the film is a kind of prequel to the MCU, but it is still expected to set the 4th Phase. In such a case, if Black Widow sets up parts of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, Marvel will have to make sure the film is released before August, or even move the Disney + show back.
Marvel Studios has no clear solution when it comes to the release of Black Widow, but sticking to the May release date is detrimental to the film’s box office potential.