As well as the global implications, the continuing Coronavirus pandemic has the movie industry facing a crisis the likes of which it has never seen before, with some analysts predicting that the delays of many big-budget movies and restrictions being enforced in theaters could see Hollywood lose up to $20 billion in revenue this year.
The Batman became the latest high-profile project to get shut down, following the likes of Fast & Furious 9, No Time to Die, Mulan and more being delayed, all of which are guaranteed to earn hundreds of millions of dollars at the very least. There’ve also been rumors that upcoming blockbusters like Black Widow and Wonder Woman 1984 could see their release dates pushed back as well, meaning that some of the year’s biggest potential hits are facing uncertain futures.
That uncertainty has extended to the domestic box office, too, with early projections indicating that the overall totals will mark the lowest cumulative gross since 1998. To put that into perspective, this week’s top ten is predicted to earn a combined $58.5 million, which is a huge drop from last week’s $100 million.
Disney and Pixar’s Onward is expected to retain the top spot for the second week running, but the lukewarm opening weekend and ongoing Coronavirus panic will ultimately see the animated feature end up as a bomb, having earned just $81 million globally so far. Vin Diesel may have made the wrong decision in not delaying Bloodshot, too, with the comic book flick set to settle for third place and not even expected to crack $10 million.
Blockbuster season traditionally kicks off in April, but that seems highly unlikely to happen this year, especially with experts claiming that the pandemic is only going to get worse over the coming weeks. We could be set to enter unprecedented territory quite soon then, with theaters lying empty during a time when action-packed blockbusters are usually playing to sold-out audiences.