Disney’s upcoming live-action remake of Mulan could face major losses amid the coronavirus outbreak which began in China.
The March 27 release date has been postponed until further notice, and the country has closed nearly 70,000 cinemas, with plans to keep them closed until at least April.
The budget for Mulan exceeds $200 million, making it the company’s most expensive adaptation to date. Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for Comscore, explained the situation to Yahoo Finance.
“China can represent a huge percentage of a film’s international and global box office revenue, so this is going to have an impact on any movie that was slated,” he said.
Niki Caro’s take on Mulan features an all-Asian cast, somewhat departing from Disney’s usual releases, and also rates as a PG-13.
“The upside is that China will release all of these movies down the road, Dergarabedian continued, “but right now the whole release slate is in flux and there are no hard dates that they can put on these films.”
Elsewhere, coronavirus has affected the theatrical box office in Italy as well, which has seen a 75% decrease in takings, against the same period last year, according to Deadline.
Over half the country’s cinema screens have been closed, as Italy now has the third-biggest number of cases after China and South Korea.
Liu Yifei, who plays the eponymous hero in the upcoming Mulan, spoke on the topic of coronavirus recently to The Hollywood Reporter.
“It’s really heavy for me to even think about it,” Yifei said.
“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,” she said. “I’m really hoping for a miracle and that this will just be over soon.”
Mulan will be released in UK cinemas on March 27.