As everyone worldwide knows by now, the Coronavirus is starting to take its toll on the entertainment industry. As movie premieres and releases continue to face delays and cancellations left and right, the industry could be heading toward as much as $5 billion in losses due to the pandemic. With Phase 4 of the MCU scheduled to begin in less than 2 months, it became more and more inevitable that the dire circumstances would find their way into Marvel's upcoming releases. It was reported earlier today that Marvel Studios' Black Widow, originally scheduled for May 1, has been delayed to an indefinite date. Now, more news has just broken considering its importance to the Marvel Cinematic Universe's future.
According to a report from Variety, a source within Marvel Studios has commented that pushing the release date of Black Widow will do nothing to affect the MCU timeline. It was not clear if these implications meant that the film wouldn't end up releasing until August, or if the film is ultimately inconsequential to the direction of Phase 4.
WHAT THIS MEANS
It has been known for quite some time that Black Widow will not follow directly after the end of Phase 3 of the MCU; specifically, the movie will be set during a time in between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War when Natasha Romanoff is hiding out from the United Nations. The revelation that the film may be inconsequential to the MCU's future is not all too shocking since fans are aware that the movie occurs in the middle of the events of Phase 3. Natasha's story already has an ending after her sacrifice on Vormir to obtain the Soul Stone in Avengers: Endgame. Black Widow, therefore, could theoretically be released at any point during Phase 4. Fans have been incredibly vocal about seeing the character's first solo movie for years and such a delay is causing them to have to wait a bit longer.
The timeline for the rest of Phase 4's 2020 releases seems to happen after the events of Avengers: Endgame, with The Eternals releasing in theatres in November and Disney+ still scheduled to host the premieres of WandaVision and The Falcon and The Winter Soldier at the end of the year. Both Disney+ series are set to occur at a future point in the MCU's timeline, and reports have revealed the same for The Eternals when it hopefully releases in November. All anyone can hope for is for the Coronavirus to be contained as quickly as possible, and once things are back to normal, Marvel fans will hopefully soon have news on when Black Widow will officially come to theaters.