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After Tenet's disappointing debut, it seems movie studios are increasingly throwing in the towel on releasing major blockbusters in 2020.
Disney on Wednesday announced another set of movie delays, and Marvel's Black Widow, which was scheduled to be released on Nov. 6 and was one of the last big movies still set to hit theaters in 2020, has been delayed to May 2021. It was previously delayed from May 2020. Subsequent Marvel movies were also delayed, with Eternals moving from February to November 2021 and Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings being postponed from May to July 2021.
The studio also delayed Steven Spielberg's West Side Story a year to Dec. 2021, placing it out of contention for the upcoming Academy Awards. Disney hasn't fully cleared out of 2020 just yet, with Pixar's Soul set to still hit theaters in November and Death on the Nile now set for December. Black Widow, though, was expected to be one of the year's highest-grossing films, and it leaving 2020 is another blow for reopened movie theaters, which experts have said may have to close again due to a lack of major new films to show.
All of this comes in the wake of Tenet opening in the United States in September, which the industry hoped would signal a return to moviegoing amid the pandemic. But with major markets like New York City and Los Angeles closed, the film's earnings in the U.S. have been seen as disappointing. Warner Bros., the studio behind Tenet, delayed its Wonder Woman sequel by nearly three months shortly after Tenet debuted in America.
With Black Widow delayed, one of the only giant 2020 blockbusters still standing is the James Bond movie No Time to Die. But experts aren't sure if it will ultimately be released in November, with The Hollywood Reporter's Borys Kit tweeting, "For those who think that they'll still be seeing movies this year, I'm sorry to give you bad news."