Tenet will hit reopened movie theaters in July, but it was delayed yet again despite director Christopher Nolan’s hopes that the film would welcome moviegoers back to theaters before other films on the release calendar. The New York Times reported the delay on Friday evening, citing Nolan’s intention to make the movie the first back in reopened theaters had already been dashed and has now been further delayed by ongoing industry conditions in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic:
Warner Bros. on Friday pushed back the release of “Tenet,” a $200 million-plus mind bender from Christopher Nolan that was supposed to arrive in theaters on July 17 and jump-start the pandemic-stricken movie business. Instead, “Tenet” will be released on July 31.
As the Times notes, without the ultra-secretive Tenet to screen, theaters will largely sit without new content for anyone eager to reenter theters in the wake of the pandemic. It also means Disney’s live-action Mulan — slated for a July 24 release — would be the first major box office film to hit screens after the nationwide shutdown that essentially halted the industry in mid-March.
Tenet’s move might force Disney’s hand with Mulan as well, creating a weird sort of game of chicken as the movie industry weighs whether the legal opening of movie theaters amid public health concerns means people actually feel safe enough to sit for hours in a darkened theater to watch films in public. What’s clear right now, however, is that Warner Bros is willing to wait a bit longer to find out if Tenet will bring the masses back to the land of popcorn and soda-sticky floors.
(Via The New York Times)