The past few weeks have been dizzying, as global concerns over the COVID-19 have changed the way of daily live. As governments and medical professionals urge the public to self-isolate in order to flatten the curve of transmission, the entertainment industry was brought to an abrupt halt. Movie theaters are closed and blockbusters have been pushed back. What’s more, movies are arriving on video on demand early, and Universal’s Trolls World Tour is skipping its theatrical run altogether. National Association of Theatre Owners’ Director of Media and Research Phil Contrino recently appeared on our podcast ReelBlend, and responded to the current state of the film world.
2021 was always going to be a big year for movies, as there were a ton of highly anticipated blockbusters heading to theaters, especially within the MCU and DCEU. But with studios pulling movies and rescheduling them a year in advance, it looks like it’s going to be an even more chaotic set of months. Phil Contrino addressed this “logjam” of upcoming releases on Reelblend, saying:
Well, that’s certainly reassuring. While the film world is full of uncertainty, it doesn’t look like the National Association of Theatre Owners sees a light at the end of the tunnel. Namely, because of how invested moviegoers are throughout the calendar year.
The last few years have proven that big hits can come at any time of the year, so studios aren't pigeonholed into putting out blockbusters during the summer and holiday months. Phil Contrino believes this shift will be beneficial to helping the industry start back up once COVID-19 concerns are lessened. After all, there are some highly anticipated blockbusters coming, albeit at a later date.
That being said, there's a ton of work to be done for each studios regarding when and how their upcoming blockbusters will be released to the general public once movie theaters reopen. Studios will have to be methodical about when each project will hit theaters, as to maximize profit and keep audience interest. Later in his appearance on ReelBlend, Phil Contrino opened up about that challenge, saying:
It sounds like the future of the movie world is a giant puzzle at this point. While the pieces are currently spread out, they'll eventually piece together into the next few years of new releases. And while the studios and movie theater owners are hard at work and thinking ahead, the general public is left to wonder about what comes next.
Be sure to check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies, once theaters have reopened. In the meantime, there are a variety of new movies that recently arrived via video on demand.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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