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‘Candyman’ Release Delayed Amid COVID-19 Concerns and Following Lackluster Box-Office Performance of Another Major Film

The future of the highly anticipated Jordan Peele remake of the horror classic “Candyman” now hangs in the balance. The movie’s premiere, according to multiple reports, has been pushed back yet again amid the coronavirus pandemic and on the heels of the box office disappointment release of another film, “Tenet.” 

According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Candyman” director Nia DaCosta announced on Saturday, Sept. 12, in a now-deleted tweet, that the film would not be released until sometime next year.

LOS ANGELES, CA – APRIL 01: Writer and Director Nia DaCosta attends the Los Angeles Pink Carpet Premiere of “Little Woods” hosted by Refinery29, NEON and Rooftop Cinema Club at NeueHouse Hollywood on April 1, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Rachel Murray/Getty Images)

“We made Candyman to be seen in theaters. Not just for the spectacle but because the film is about community and stories—how they shape each other, how they shape us. It’s about the collective experience of trauma and joy, suffering and triumph, and the stories we tell around it,” DaCosta explained. She added, “We wanted the horror and humanity of Candyman to be experienced in a collective, a community, so we’re pushing Candyman to next year, to ensure that everyone can see the film, in theaters, and share in that experience.”

The project was initially scheduled to release on June 12, 2020, by Universal Pictures, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was pushed to Sept. 25, 2020. The film, which had been described as a “spiritual sequel” to the 1992 slasher movie, was then moved to Oct. 16, 2020, taking the previous release date of “Halloween Kills” — the latest installment in the Michael Myers/”Halloween” franchise. 

The pandemic has caused many movies to bypass theaters. However, MGM, Universal and the creators behind “Candyman” are committed to a theatrical release, with a new date expected in the coming weeks. All promotional platforms have since been updated with the 2021 date. “Candyman” stars Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Tony Todd and Vanessa Estelle Williams. 

The  delayed release appears to be a precautionary move to avoid poor box office performance shown by “Tenet.” The action movie starring John David Washington, Robert Pattinson and Elizabeth Debicki delivered lackluster results by industry standards. The Christopher Nolan directed film, which was projected to be a box-office smash, earned a meager $6.7 million in its second weekend, bringing its domestic haul to a disappointing $29.5 million.

Likewise, other movie executives appear to avoid a similar fate with other notable movies, including “Wonder Woman 1984,” starring Gal Gadot. Warner Bros. postponed the film to Christmas Day from its original date of Oct. 2, 2020. That, coupled with Disney’s 20th Century decision to delay “The King’s Man” from Sept. 18 to Feb. 26, 2021, and numerous other movie postponements, prove that many people still aren’t ready to head back to theaters as more establishments open their doors during the pandemic. 

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