The live-action film, based on the animated classic, directed by Niki Caros and starring Liu Yifei, was scheduled for theatrical release March 27th, but that date was pushed to July 24th with the outbreak of global pandemic. As rates of coronavirus infections increase in many U.S. states including Los Angeles and Phoenix, another delay seems inevitable.
According to Deadline, California Governor Gavin Newsom reported 5,349 new coronavirus cases on Thursday. That’s down from the all time high of 7,149 just the day before, but the governor was not thrilled.
Combine that with New York Governor’s Andrew Cuomo removal of movie theaters, as well as malls and gyms, from the list of businesses that can reopen during Phase 4, the thought of the film making its July 24 date seems slim at best.
Not only is coronavirus delaying release dates, it’s putting more and more movie theaters in financial jeopardy. The fate of the industry seems unclear as more and more big businesses like Apple, Amazon and Netflix may line up to buy them.
The Hollywood Reporter speculates that cinemas in both New York City and Los Angeles will have to be open before any theatrical debut. Disney may also have to wait for China’s numbers of Covid-19 to drop as the country suffers another resurgence.
For now, movie goers wait on hold for an official announcement from Disney.
Laura Day is a Reel New York correspondent. Contact her at Laura@reelchicago.com