Last year was obviously awful for everyone across the globe, and if you were a movie fan, there was also that added kick in the teeth of watching all these movies you wanted to see pushed off the release calendar. Some of those, like Black Widow and F9, were finally released this year, but with the rampant spread of the Delta variant, a few major films have gotten ahead of the game and jumped to 2022.
The dominos begin with Top Gun: Maverick (a film which, at CinemaCon, we found out has at least one alien reference). Tom Cruise’s long awaited return to the skies has already had six different release dates, the most recent being November 19, 2021. (Not all of the delays were due to covid-19, but the majority were.) Today, Paramount moved that film from this November to May 27, 2022, a date that will be familiar to Cruise fans because it’s when Mission: Impossible 7 was scheduled to come out. Well, that’s now moved to September 30, 2022. And not to be outshined, Paramount also moved Jackass Forever from October 22 (where it would’ve been opposite Dune) to February 4, 2022.
Soon after the news of the move, Sony slid its own highly anticipated legacy sequel Ghostbusters: Afterlife back a week, from November 11 to November 19. That gives it a little extra breathing room from Disney and Marvel’s Eternals on November 5, and a stronger chance over the Thanksgiving weekend. So definitely a more positive move, but a move nonetheless.
Looking at the other films scheduled for the fall, you can’t help but keep an eye on Venom: Let There Be Carnage and No Time to Die, both of which have moved multiple times and are scheduled to be released in the next few weeks. Sony’s confidence in Ghostbusters suggests Venom, which comes first, is likely to stay (not to mention its potential/hypothetical ties to Morbius and or Spider-Man: No Way Home coming out in the months after), and at CinemaCon, an MGM executive vowed that the James Bond film would be out in October no matter what. But that was last week. Things can change.
Plus, the view isn’t as cheery from the ground floor. I was at a screening of this weekend’s number one movie, Candyman, on Sunday evening at a major Los Angeles theatre and it was a ghost town — my wife and I were the only ones at our screening. And this was opening weekend of a major horror movie! Sure it did well, but it did do well enough? As well as it could’ve at another time? These are questions studios are surely asking right now and at least one, Paramount, thinks the answer is no.
Though, to be fair, Paramount’s trepidation probably also has something to do with the lashing the studio took with Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins, which was released July 23 and hasn’t even made $US40 ($54) million globally (a number it probably could have hit on its opening weekend if it was released three years ago). The studio also moved its Clifford the Big Red Dog film off the schedule entirely.
So, as the headline says, “Oh no. It’s happening again.” What do think? Are there movies you need to see this year? Are you comfortable going back to the theatre yet? Let us know below.
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Editor’s Note: Release dates within this article are based in the U.S., but will be updated with local Australian dates as soon as we know more.