Illumination/Universal’s Minions: The Rise Of Gru has been moved off of its global release which was previously set for late June in some offshore markets and for July 3 domestically. This is another casualty of the coronavirus pandemic as Illumination’s Mac Guff studio in Paris has been temporarily shuttered in abidance with the current lockdown in France. A new release date is yet to be fixed.
Illumination founder and CEO Chris Meledandri said, “In response to the severity of the situation in France, we are temporarily closing our Illumination Mac Guff studio in Paris. With this decision we are abiding by the French Government’s guidelines and doing everything possible to slow the spread of the virus as we care for our artists and their families. This means we will be unable to finish Minions: The Rise Of Gru in time for our planned global releases in late June and early July. While we all grapple with the enormity of this crisis, we must put the safety and protection of our employees above all. We look forward to finding a new release date for the return of Gru and the Minions.”
This is an unfortunate, and unavoidable, blow to yet another tentpole that was expected to blast out worldwide this summer. But with France on lockdown, it makes sense.
In 2017, the series of Illumination Despicable Me movies all told became the top grossing animated film franchise ever worldwide. Now, it becomes a question of finishing and finding the right date for Gru, something the industry overall is grappling with on myriad titles in unprecedented times.