Don’t fear, Star Wars fans: You’ll see The Mandalorian season 2 this October on Disney+ as planned.
Walt Disney Company CEO, Bob Chapek speaking with CNBC today said that the series wrapped production before the COVID-19 outbreak “and we’ve been in post. They’ll no delays on Mandalorian.”
In addition, the new Disney CEO continued to emphasis the studio’s commitment to theaters, this despite the fact that movies like originally planned theatrical release Artemis Fowl going to Disney+ instead.
“We believe in the theatrical experience, particularly to release big blockbuster films,” said Chapek, and that’s because of their resonance with consumers products, and even Disney+. But having the streaming service and access to 54M+ subs, “it’s a viable way to premiere films as well, on a deliberate film by film basis; no hard and fast rules” he continued.
Asked about whether moviegoers will be slow to head back to the movies, and if July 24 is still a good release date for Mulan, Chapek said that consumers’ attitudes toward the return to the parks and cinemas are quite similar.
“I think it’s going to be a stair-step situation like it is in our parks,” said the CEO who isn’t concerned about any initial capacity safety restraints at theaters.
“If you think about the occupancy of a movie theater, 25% is the Monday through Friday afternoon (capacity)…It only becomes an issues on Friday and Saturday night, and to a lesser extent on Sunday night. In that particular case it can be managed and up to exhibitors,” said Chapek
And as far as Mulan being a go on July 24 around the world in cinemas, “We’re optimistic,” he continued. Distribution and exhibition sources have said that in order for Mulan to open, and Warner Bros.’ Tenet before it on July 17, theaters in New York City, Los Angeles and the rest of the world have to be open.
“You have to balance people’s anxiety about going out in public with pent-up demand,” answered Chapek on whether moviegoers would be slow to return to cinemas.
As far as how the production stoppage will impact Disney+, Chapek wasn’t worried.
“We have a certain amount of inventory for Disney+ that is fueling the machine. Pre-production –the development phase– can still happen during these times of lockdown, post-production can still happen.”