Instead of simply agreeing to pay actors and writers what they deserve, Hollywood has decided that slowing down the entire industry to a crawl and delaying the biggest blockbusters on the release calendar to a time when the stars will theoretically be able to promote them is the better course of action, with Sony’s Spider-Man Universe igniting a domino effect that could be a sign of things to come.

As well as firming up a release date for Bad Boys 4 of June 14 next summer, the company has gone to town on its existing slate by delaying, moving forward, reshuffling, and in one inevitable case indefinitely removing a spate of superhero stories from the schedule.

Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Kraven the Hunter
Image via Sony Pictures

Venom 3 has been confirmed as the first of the trilogy to not release in October, with Tom Hardy’s third outing as the symbiotic antihero landing on July 12. Meanwhile, despite being less than three months away from its planned release date, Kraven the Hunter has been kicked all the way back to August 30, a massive eight-month shift.

Madame Web is now arriving 48 hours ahead of schedule on Valentine’s Day 2024, because nothing says romance like a comic book story trolls and review-bombers are destined to tear down, while Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse is gone completely, which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise when tales of behind the scenes woe made it nigh-on impossible to imagine the grand finale would land as planned to an ominous “TBD,” which could realistically be as far away as 2025.

Now that the precedent has been set that studios are happy to run away from the strikes, it’ll be fascinating to see which outfit ends up blinking next.

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