Sony has confirmed that it plans to push back the release of Spider-Man: No Way Home in certain markets due to concern over recent spikes in COVID infection numbers. The release will be pushed back to January in the Philippines, Japan, and Norway.
Many feared that this year’s Marvel offerings such as Shang Chi and The Eternals would be pushed back due to spikes in COVID infections caused by the new Delta variant, but both features made it to theaters on schedule. However, films slated for release in the new year and even beyond may not fare so well as a result of COVID hampered production schedules. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness has already had its release date pushed from March to May.
Fans in the affected areas are already frustrated at the prospect of facing entire weeks between the US release and the release dates in their own countries. The lag between dates is sure to be laden with spoilers which will become even harder to avoid as the weeks pass by.
The lag time may end up costing the studios. Given the almost impossible task of avoiding details about the movie, fans are already predicting the delays will cause a wave of piracy as people scramble to avoid having the movie spoiled for them.
Regardless of any possibility of piracy, there is no doubt that the massive interest in the film will make it one of the biggest releases of 2021 with every chance of being one of the biggest opening weekends for an MCU movie since the beginning of the pandemic.
Spider-Man: No Way Home opens in theaters this weekend.