Wonder Woman 1984 has been delayed three times since the coronavirus pandemic began and, given all the other recent movie delays, it’s likely it will be pushed to 2021 within the next few weeks. Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins warns that if theaters continue to remain shuttered without federal financial assistance, cinemas as we know them may never bounce back.
Jenkins and many other Hollywood directors have appealed to the U.S. government for additional funding for cinemas across the U.S. Jenkins said, “If we shut this down, this will not be a reversible process...We could lose movie theater-going forever.”
While attendance at theaters has seen an increase in some countries, cinemas are still struggling in the U.S. In fact, Cineworld Group recently announced that they will be closing all Regal theater locations beginning October 8th. The National Association of Theatre Owners warned that 69% of small to mid-sized cinemas in the U.S. would soon be forced to file for bankruptcy or permanently close.
Jenkins predicts that if more theaters close, movie studios will begin to make movies primarily for streaming services. “I don’t think any of us want to live in a world where the only option is to take your kids to watch a movie in your own living room and not have a place to go for a date.”
Studios like Disney and Universal have already turned to streaming services to premiere 2020 films like Mulan and Trolls World Tour. While many studios are starting to see streaming as a lucrative option, Jenkins holds firm on her position to premiere Wonder Woman 1984 in theaters:
“I really hope that we are able to be one of the very first ones to come back and bring that into everyone’s life.”
Do you think movie theaters run the risk of becoming extinct in the U.S.? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!