How the Entertainment Industry was Affected by the Coronavirus Pandemic

With many blockbuster movies like the live-action Mulan, Marvel’s Black Widow, and A Quiet Place II expected to hit theaters in the beginning of 2020, the makers of these movies were expected to make millions in the box-office. However, since the COVID-19 breakout in February, it took a hard turn for these highly promoted movies.

Mulan, the live-action remake of the 1998 animated film, was one the major blockbuster movies set to bring in the viewers. However, it took a toll due to the coronavirus shutting down the nation in March of 2020, resulting in shutting down theatres nationwide.

Director of Mulan, Niki Caro, wrote on Instagram before the nationwide lockdown that Mulan will not be able to roll in theaters at its scheduled date on March 27. “We are so excited to share this film with the world but given the current ever-shifting circumstances we are all experiencing, unfortunately, we have to postpone the worldwide release of Mulan for now,” Caro wrote. “Our hearts are with everyone the world over who is affected by this virus, and we hope that Mulan’s fighting spirit will continue to inspire those who are working so hard to keep us all safe.”

Mulan was reported to cost $200 million to make the film. Earlier in the month of March, the cast and crew gathered at the world premiere held in Los Angeles, California. The movie was already being heavily promoted through TV, online, and outdoor billboards.

As for the star of the movie, Liu Yifei who plays Mulan, she spoke about how the virus has affected the movie and her hometown of Wuhan, which is the epicenter of coronavirus. “It’s really heavy for me to even think about it. People are doing the right thing. They are being careful for themselves and others. I’m so touched actually to see how they haven’t been out for weeks. I’m really hoping for a miracle and that this will just be over soon,” said Yifei.

But, just like how the live-action remake of Mulan was affected by the pandemic, many other movies like Marvel’s Black Widow and A Quiet Place II had to postpone their release dates until further notice.

However, movies were not the only type of entertainment that got hit hard by the pandemic. Many solo artists and bands had to cancel or postpone their tours to later dates.

Solo artist, Beck, had to cancel his 2020 European tour. In a statement that was written on his official Twitter account, it said, “”Due to continued restrictions on public gatherings, and in the interest of public safety, the below Beck shows will not be happening as scheduled. We’re working to reschedule as many of these shows as soon as it is safe to do so and will keep you updated along the way. Please refer to point of purchase for ticketing/refund information. Beck is very sorry about this situation and is looking forward to getting back on stage as soon as possible.”

Big festivals like Coachella had to postpone their annual festivities that typically take place the second week of April. In a statement made back in March of this year by the Coachella team, they postponed the dates to October of 2020. However, Coachella was still not able to happen in October due to the increasing cases of Coronavirus. Fortunately, tickets that have already been purchased will either be refunded or honored for the new dates to come.

The biggest talk to come out of this pandemic from the entertainment perspective was the 2020 VMA Awards. Typically, viewers are used to seeing audiences on screen and the performers putting on elaborate shows, sometimes even interacting with the crowds. Of course, things were much different this year.

The performances consisted of dancers wearing face masks, socially distanced presenters, and a whole lot of green screen. Basically, the performances felt like the MTV’s music videos you would see in the 1980’s.

However, viewers could not help but notice the fake crowd noises and cartoon silhouettes of people clapping in the background. Faces of viewers were also projected on big screens behind the presenters to show there was somewhat of an audience watching.

But leave it to Lady Gaga to take issues into matter and speak about the importance of wearing a face mask. “Stay safe, speak your mind and I might sound like a broken record, but wear a mask,” Gaga said as she accepted artist of the year. “It’s a sign of respect.”

With many things putting a halt on everyday norms, it seems that things with the entertainment world will take a while to get back to normal. Since the pandemic mandated people to be on lockdown and quarantine in their homes, streaming services like Netflix and Disney + became a daily usage in households. Binge-watching became a normality within families across the world.

As for the future, some predict that families will cut the expensive cable cord packages and focus primarily on streaming services. Fueled by these new streaming services, original movies and television shows have been produced just for these platforms, skipping out on the movie theatres, and making more of a showing in households.

Festivals like Coachella, live concerts and events, and amusement parks will eventually return to the pre-pandemic aspects and bring consumers back. But certain things will be changed such as on-site sanitation areas, apps for touchless transactions, beverage and merchandise ordering, and on-site traffic flow congesting/crowding mitigation.

The world just must wait for a vaccination to be approved and distributed, and eventually, the entertainment world can return safely for people of the world to enjoy again.

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