‘Black Widow’ Move Delivers Warning to Movie Theaters: Recovery Will Be Slow

Without a Marvel movie in May, the box office is facing a far more gradual recovery over the next three months

Box office optimism is faltering after significant changes made to Disney’s movie slate, headlined by the two-month delay of “Black Widow,” have significantly soured the short-term outlook for the industry.

Much of the reopening plans for theaters were built on the expectation — or at least the hope — that a long-anticipated Marvel blockbuster would be around in May to help bring audiences back to theaters. Now, that early May boost is gone, and it’s too late for any blockbuster from another studio to take its May 7 slot. Studios typically need more than six weeks to prepare marketing campaigns and ensure their advertising for a film is in place.

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Jeremy Fuster

Jeremy Fuster

Box Office Reporter • jeremy.fuster@thewrap.com