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Ghostbusters: Afterlife Is Delayed, But It's Not All Bad News

Just moments after the news that Tom Cruise’s Top Gun: Maverick has kicked off a series of delays into 2022, an announcement has been made that Ghostbusters: Afterlife is also moving its original November 2021 release date. However, it’s not all bad news, as fans of the Sony Pictures franchise won’t have too much of a wait from where the film previously stood to release. Instead of seeing Ghostbusters: Afterlife on November 11th, audiences will now have to move their plans to November 19th.

Per the just released official announcement from Sony, Ghostbusters: Afterlife is only shifting by roughly a week. With an extra eight days added to the release plans of director Jason Reitman’s legacy-quel to the original Ghostbusters films, it doesn’t feel like a huge delay. However, looking at the box office calendar for November, this move feels like a very shrewd and strategic move.

Originally, Ghostbusters: Afterlife was stuck in a rather crowded spot. With a November 11th release date, undoubtedly set to try and avoid everything from Netflix’s Red Notice to Disney+’s Home Sweet Home Alone, things were already looking interesting. Plus, that spot saw Sony trying to compete with the second weekend of Marvel’s Eternals, which is slated to release in theaters on November 5th.

However, one might still be questioning just why Sony would move the release date on a huge blockbuster that’s already getting raves. CinemaCon audiences got to see the entirety of Ghostbusters: Afterlife, and with both con-goers and Ghostbusters fans ready to rev up the Ectomobile once again, surely the competition wouldn’t have been too rough, right?

Admittedly, Ghostbusters: Afterlife probably could have done well in the November 11th slot. However, with Top Gun: Maverick flying into 2022, Ghostbusters: Afterlife only has to compete with Warner Bros’ King Richard, which also opens on November 19th. So not only is there time for all of those other films in previous weeks to fight it out, but with a Will Smith prestige drama being the only other major release that day, Ghostbusters: Afterlife is set to cash in big time with a different demographic.

Uncertainty still exists in the world of theatrical release, and especially with the delta variant of COVID-19 being a going concern. It’s just a question of which movies are secure enough to stay put, which ones feel the need to move, and what projects will take advantage of the shifting landscape of 2021’s cinematic showcase. With that in mind, Ghostbusters: Afterlife may have just positioned itself to be a success story in the making, as it’s not afraid of 2021.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife will now haunt a theater near you on November 19th. But be sure to check the 2021 release schedule, to see when and if any other huge moves are made. Who knows if Sony might have plans to push the terrifying Resident Evil: Welcome To Raccoon City as a result of this new, bold move?

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Mike Reyes

CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.