‘No Time to Die,’ ‘King’s Man’ Delayed in Latest Schedule Shake-Up

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Hollywood is clearing film releases from the first half of 2021, betting that the second half of the year -- or beyond -- will be a safer time for theatrical debuts.

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer said Thursday that its James Bond installment “No Time to Die” will now hit theaters on Oct. 8. The movie was originally slated for 2020 and previously pushed back to April 2 of this year.

‘No Time to Die,’ ‘King’s Man’ Delayed in Latest Schedule Shake-Up

On Friday, Walt Disney Co. rescheduled several upcoming movies it inherited when it bought most of 21st Century Fox in 2019, including “The King’s Man,” a prequel to the Kingsman series. That film had been slated for March 12, but will now debut on Aug. 20. It also took “Bob’s Burgers,” due April 9, off the schedule altogether.

Donna Langley, head of Universal’s filmed entertainment, warned last week that more films would have to be delayed this year. Her studio, part of Comcast Corp., is distributing “No Time to Die,” which features Daniel Craig in the Bond role.

“We are analyzing the landscape as we speak and of course had anticipated that this is a likely scenario, and have assessed alternate dates for all of our titles if that proves necessary,” Langley said in a Q&A with Bloomberg.

Major Disney films still remain on track for the first half of 2021, including the Marvel superhero movie “Black Widow” in May, but it’s been widely speculated that it too will be delayed.

As part of the schedule shake-up, MGM will move its untitled “Addams Family” sequel to Oct. 1 from Oct. 8, freeing up the slot for “No Time to Die.” Sony Corp. also has pushed back a number of features, including its latest “Ghostbusters.”

Since the pandemic crippled the cinema industry in March, few major movies have been released in theaters. “Wonder Woman 1984” hit the big screen last month, but it debuted at the same time on WarnerMedia’s streaming service, HBO Max.

MGM held discussions with Apple Inc. and Netflix Inc. about taking “No Time to Die” directly to streaming, people familiar with the situation said last year. The film could have fetched hundreds of millions of dollars in a potential streaming sale, according to the people. MGM declined to comment on any talks, but said the movie was “not for sale.”

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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