Friday, 12, August, 2022

Coronavirus puts much of the entertainment industry on hold

The coronavirus epidemic, the COVID-19, continues to increase. The massive spread of the virus has affected the global economy a lot. The entertainment industry has been one of the most impacted by the virus and executives and politicians have started to adopt measures in favor of people's health and safety, reaching the planet's cultural agenda. Organizers of industry conferences, press visits and film festivals are evaluating options for postponing or canceling upcoming events, with the aim of minimizing economic loss.

Every day the numbers change. Cases of suspected infections are on the increase, almost at the same rate as new global death announcements from the virus appear. The epidemic has scared people and has affected much of the entertainment industry such as movies, series and games. 

According to box office data company Comscore, ticket sales in China fell by US$ 1.91 billion in the first two months of this year due to the coronavirus outbreak. The number of drops at the box office could increase much more around the world, as there are some productions that are postponing their projects. 

Cinemas and productions

Sony postponed the debut of Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway until 7 August. The live-action sequel would be released in the UK and Europe on March 27. In the USA the forecast was for April 3.

Epicenter of the outbreak, in China alone, more than 70 thousand cinemas and 11 thousand cinema complexes were closed, forcing the postponement of several productions. Among them, the new movie 007- No Time to Die, which was scheduled for April, has been postponed to November 12 in the UK and November 25 in the USA.

The live action of the Disney classic, Mulan, will also be postponed but without a certain date. Disney expects the situation to calm down. The premiere of the film for now, will not be affected in other countries and follows the release schedule for March. With a budget of US$ 200 million, Disney could be at a loss without the large Chinese market.

Recently, films about the Richthofen case and A Quiet Place Part II were postponed indefinitely, while Fast and Furious 9 had its new debut scheduled for a year from now.

Sonic: the movie it may have been a success at the American box office, but the hedgehog is not present in Chinese rooms. In a note, the Paramount Pictures says he will not set dates until the Coronavirus epidemic is controlled. Other unanticipated securities are  1917, Jojo Rabbit and Dolittle.

The director of the film Bloosoms, Wong Kar-wai, interrupted the production of the film, which was to be recorded in Shanghai. Wong had already commented that the film is deeply personal, like a return to his hometown, Shanghai, and that the script and development of the project, has already lasted five years. 

The film producer, Jia Zhangke, commented in an interview with the website “IndieWire” that delayed the production of his new film until 2021, since the plot takes place between summer and spring. 

Mission Impossible 7 was also affected by the Coronavirus. The new film in the franchise will have scenes shot in Venice - Italy, one of the countries most affected by the epidemic. In a statement, Paramount Pictures said it was aware of the team's concerns and will continue to monitor the situation. The film Red Notice, gives Netflix that would also record in the country, was postponed.

The Gerrymandering documentary, Slay the Dragon, had its debut postponed to April. Both in cinemas and on digital platforms, so people can watch from wherever they want.

Fairs and events

One of the biggest innovation events in the world, South by Southwest (SXSW) was officially canceled due to the Coronavirus outbreak. Until last Friday (6) Texas, where the event would take place, already had 17 confirmed cases.

Scheduled to take place between March 13 and 22, in the city of Austin, the event organizers said they were devastated by the situation. In a statement on Twitter, the production said it was following the rules imposed by the city. “The city of Austin canceled the March dates for the SXSW it's the SXSW EDU. SXSW will faithfully follow the city's instructions. ” It is the first time in 34 years that the March event will not take place.

The main Chinese government cinema event, the Beijing International Film Festival, It was postponed. The edition was originally scheduled to take place in April and organizers will release a new date in the coming weeks or months, according to efforts to contain coronavirus.

Held every year since 2008, the Google canceled its biggest annual event, I / O, which would take place in View, California, from May 12 to 14. 

"Due to concerns about the coronavirus (COVID-19), and in accordance with the health guidelines of CDC, WHO and other health officials, we have decided to cancel Google's physical I / O event on the Shoreline Amphitheater," he said. the company in a statement on the event website. "In the coming weeks, we will explore other ways to develop Google I / O to better connect with our developer community."

The developer conference Facebook F8 will no longer be held from May 5th to 6th. In place of the personal event of F8, Facebook is planning local events, videos and content broadcast live.

The American Film Institute decided to postpone the Life Achievement Award, initially scheduled for April 25. The event was rescheduled for early summer and this year will pay tribute to actress Julie Andrews.

Following the order of the French government to ban internal meetings of more than 5,000 people, declared by the French Minister of Health, the MipTV , one of the main international events in the TV market, has been canceled. Cancellation also covers branch events MipDoc and MipFormats.

The Hong Kong FilMart, Asia's largest film and TV fair, postponed the event that was scheduled for March and will now take place in August. In addition to the date change, the number of days went from four to three, between August 27 and 29.

The Wondercon 2020, from the same company as San Diego Comic Con, also postponed the event scheduled for April this year, still without informing the date and without commenting on the repercussions in the SDCC.


The E3 2020, which would take place on June 9th and 11th, was canceled. In an official statement, the event organizers said they made this decision for the health and safety of everyone in the industry. “After growing and overwhelming concerns about the COVID-19 virus, we felt that this was the best way to proceed during an unprecedented global situation. ”Said ESA, the official organization of E3.

After several companies like Kojima Productions, Sony Interactive Entertainment and Facebook canceled their participation in Game Developers Conference 2020, the event has been postponed. Without a certain date, the GDC must be done during the summer of the northern hemisphere, between June and September.

O Mid-Season Invitational (MSI) was postponed to July 2020 due to the coronavirus. Organizers are concerned about the impact the epidemic could have on players' travels. The event will take place on July 3 to 19 and has no defined location.

Continuing in the LOL scenario, the Rift Rivals is canceled, the LPL is being played online, players must complete a monitored quarantine period for 14 days and meet all local health requirements before they can resume membership in the league. THE LCK, championship of League of Legends from South Korea, has been suspended for security measures and does not yet have a return date. THE PCS postponed the start of the season.

Riot Games reported that testing events for the new FPS Valorant, scheduled for March, in the United States and Europe, have been canceled. 

The Hearthstone Masters Tour will be played only online. According to the company, the decision was made prioritizing the safety of the participants, since the tournament usually brings together people from more than 40 different countries.

Free Fire Champions Cup 2020 has been delayed. The championship would take place in April in Indonesia and so far has no new dates.

O PGS (PUBG Global Series) which would take place on March 31 in Berlin, has been postponed to April. The new competition date has not yet been announced and the plan to host four global PUBG e-sports events in 2020 remains unchanged.

The tournaments that would take place in Belgium and USA (three) of Capcom Pro Tour (CPT), Street Fighter circuit, have been canceled. The debut of CPT 2020 was postponed to April 18, with The MIXUP, in France.

There are still more events that could be canceled or postponed, many are analyzing the situation before making any decisions. With so many cancellations and postponements, the consequences can be seen gradually. While we do not have an immunization against the virus, it is not known whether the epidemic has reached its peak and will start to subside or if more cases will be seen. With what we've seen in the past few months, companies are expected to adopt more robust backup systems in the future in order to keep business going in tough times. What everyone hopes for sure is that the situation will be resolved as quickly as possible and with the least number of fatalities. May the health and safety of all prevail.

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