It feels like we have been waiting forever for its release, but unfortunately for excited fans, Wonder Woman 1984’s delay woes might be far from over.
According to Vanity Fair and “sources with knowledge of the plans,” Warner Bros. is mulling either a further Wonder Woman 1984 release date delay to summer 2021 or placing an addendum on the film’s Christmas release plan.
Allegedly, after putting WW84 in theaters as planned this holiday season, the studio will drop the Gal Gadot-led super hero sequel on HBO Max just a few weeks later in early January, the end result of a discussion that has been brewing at the studio for months due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and accompanying lockdowns.
Since all that began in March, the long-awaited sequel has been delayed several times from its original December 193th, 2019 release date – first to November 2019, then June 2020, August 2020, October 2020, and finally, December 2020.
Spiking COVID cases are causing concerns there will be more mass shutdowns everywhere, keeping theaters closed longer in those critical urban areas, and this supposed dual-release strategy on the table could inject some much-needed life and income into teetering theaters that are still open, as well as boosting HBO Max’s subscriber numbers.
The subscriber-based service is struggling to catch up to the competition – hard to do when you aren’t available on every device or in every country – and could use the added eyeballs on it.
HBO Max has a reported 8.6 million activations as of WarnerMedia’s third quarter. Combined, it and HBO proper have 38 million subscribers, a far cry from the 73 million reportedly subscribed to Disney+.
CEO Jason Kilar has announced time and again HBO Max is the priority, Warner’s golden child, even as the company downsizes, but for it to have any chance of survival it needs a hit, preferably before the release of The Snyder Cut.
On the reverse, committing to a date at the movies would almost guarantee Wonder Woman’s second solo outing would easily net the studio nearly a billion-dollars, slightly above what the original film made.
Obviously, coming out over Christmas while theaters are still operating under capacity due to the pandemic wouldn’t gross the same tally, and for Warner Bros, patience may be the key to actualizing those profits.
Vanity Fair says Warner Bros is considering a June or July release, which would push either an undisclosed New Line horror film or Space Jam 2 out of its slot. Hopefully, by then, a vaccine will be widely distributed and the world will have a handle on the virus.
Unsurprisingly, WW84 director Patty Jenkins conceded that COVID is the real variable, noting in an October interview that “I don’t think anybody can be confident of anything right now.”
“We just don’t know what the course of COVID is going to be like,” she said.
Jenkins and a Warner rep made it clear, though, that “WW84 will be in theaters,” and deserves to be seen in one. The rep declined to comment further on the film’s future.
What do you make of this potential delay? Are you still interested in the film, even with all of these push backs? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!