Yesterday brought the final confirmation that the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is playing exclusively in theaters for 45 days beginning from September 3rd before making its way to Disney Plus, which was an inevitable outcome following the post-Black Widow debacle that saw Scarlett Johansson sue the studio for breach of contract, leading to all sorts of public mud-slinging.
Unfortunately, Simu Liu’s debut as the title hero faces the risk of becoming one of the lowest-grossing installments in the franchise to date, which wouldn’t be a great look for the MCU’s landmark 25th movie. Not only does it look set to be denied a release in the lucrative and increasingly important for the pandemic era Chinese market, but a lot of fans are simply unwilling to take a trip to their local multiplex given the recent COVID surges across the country.
As you can see below, a large number of people would be much happier with a Premier Access debut for Shang-Chi, and many of them are more than happy to wait out the 45-day period before watching it safely from the comfort of their own home.
Eternals is still scheduled for November 5th, but Venom: Let There Be Carnage being pushed back a tentative three weeks to October 15th has already created concerns over Spider-Man: No Way Home, with just four months to go until Tom Holland’s third solo outing is scheduled to arrive without a single shred of footage having been released to the public as of yet. The effects of the pandemic are far from over, with Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings set to find that out first hand.