It's hard not to look at what's happening with cinemas right now and not be more than a little scared.
As Cineworld closes its doors - temporarily, at least - and its US arm, Regal Cinemas, does the same, many are left wondering if cinemas and the cinema-going experience is doomed to history. The likelihood is that things won't return to some kind of normality until late 2021, if not 2022, which will mean cinemas will have to remain shuttered for the foreseeable future.
While that's tough on movie lovers, it's harder on directors too. Patty Jenkins, director of 'Wonder Woman 1984', believes that unless the US government intervenes to help the struggling cinema sector, it may go extinct. "If we shut this down, this will not be a reversible process," she told Reuters in a recent interview. "We could lose movie theater-going forever."
Jenkins added that the closures of cinemas, be it temporary or permanent through bankruptcy, will lead to studios opting for streaming their output instead of going to cinemas. "I don’t think any of us want to live in a world where the only option is to take your kids to watch a movie in your own living room, and not have a place to go for a date," she added.
With a budget of $200 million, 'Wonder Woman 1984' needs the cinema experience to return in order to make a return on Warner Bros' investment. As 'Tenet' struggles to hit the same box office it did pre-pandemic, studios have now begun punting releases to 2021 and 2022.
'Wonder Woman 1984' is set for release on December 25th of this year.