Previously, the film, originally scheduled for a May 2020 release, was delayed twice, first in November 2020 and then in May 2021. As of yesterday, Disney executives say they remain committed to a theatrical release and that it will be in May, although they admit they are monitoring the situation.
Reports that Feige, who played a key role in the development of Marvel’s vast interconnected film universe, was the one who argued against an initial digital or hybrid release come from Variety, although they did not investigate these deliberations in depth.
The studio typically releases at least two films in paused theaters (there were none in 2020 because of the pandemic), meaning that each new delay for Black Widow creates a cascading effect of delays for other Marvel marquees, forcing other major Disney releases to be delayed as well.
Until then, each new delay raised questions about a possible digital release on Disney+, especially in light of the financial success of films like Troll World Tour, Wonder Woman 1984 and Mulan using streaming models. Disney has always insisted that Marvel movies not go to Disney+ – and with the launch of WandaVision and the new series coming out soon, there was a kind of logic that said it was not absolutely necessary.
“I mean, certainty is meaningless in today’s world because no one knows anything. Hope dies last,” said Kevin Feige, president and producer of Marvel Studios, when asked about the likelihood of Black Widow appearing in theaters and not Disney+. “A year late is hopefully enough, there’s a vaccine in it now. That’s what we’re going to see. That’s what I hope. I want to get back to theater with people.”
WandaVision currently airs on Disney+. Remaining programming for 2021 includes the premiere of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier at Disney+ on March 19, Black Widow in theaters on May 7, Loki in May at Disney+, Shang-Chi and Legend of the Ten Rings in theaters on the 9th. July, What If ….at Disney+ this summer, Evening Concerts in theaters on November 5, Ms. Marvel and Hawkeye at Disney+ later in the year, and Marvel’s Spider-Man 3 in theaters on December 17.
Are you excited to finally see Black Widow? Let us know in the comments what you think about the latest development of one of the oldest Marvel sagas.
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