Shang-Chi to Save the Cinema
Martial arts have a long tradition in Hollywood. With Bruce Lee’s rise as a movie star, martial arts became an integral part of numerous action films and TV series. Now, one of martial arts masterpieces is preparing to save the cinema world, although it is still uncertain whether this experiment will succeed.
Of course, we’re talking about the latest Marvel blockbuster Shang-Chi, which finally heralds a new phase for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This film is an entirely new story from what has been shown on the screens before. This time a legend of about ten rings finally takes center stage.
The challenge is great; after all, Black Widow could only partially meet the fans’ lofty expectations in summer. Marvel’s last blockbusters regularly exceeded the one-billion-dollar mark at the box office, and they usually managed to do that even when the film studio introduced new characters. Therefore, many experts assumed that Black Widow would continue this successful streak after the long break, but things turned out differently.
As the first big blockbuster of the summer, the film should prove that cinemas still are successful. But the parent company Disney wanted to play it safe. Therefore, the corporate managers decided to let Black Widow go to the cinema and on Disney + at the same time. This dual strategy should secure the income, but the system didn’t quite work. The initial launch appeared to be very promising as the box office earnings for the film brought in 160 million dollars worldwide and 80 million in the USA alone. At the same time, Disney announced the box office results for a movie on Disney + for the first time. These were 60 million dollars on the first weekend.
But after that, it went downhill. The results in the cinema crashed and when the film reached the end of its cycle, it had played in 370 million dollars in cinemas worldwide. Disney + has not released any further figures so far, but if you extrapolate the starting weekend, then the total numbers for cinema and streaming can be a little more than half a billion dollars. That means that Black Widow did not achieve the box office results that everybody expected. Therefore, the dual strategy of cinema and streaming start is called into question.
The largest film company in the world is now on the offensive. However, this not only affects Disney, but also its competitors. For example, Warner Bros. had also announced that it would launch its films on both platforms in the future, although now there seems to be uncertainty. At Disney, the publishers want to know whether cinema is still capable of soaring to old heights. The proof is supposed to be provided by Shang-Chi. According to the CEO, the blockbuster serves as an experiment. For the time being, it will only start in the cinema and will not come onto the streaming platform until 45 days later. Leading actor Simu Liu was not happy on Twitter. He made it clear that he is not an experiment, which means that Disney has more trouble on their side; not to forget, Scarlett Johansson is currently filing a lawsuit as well. She saw herself financially cheated by the streaming start of Black Widow.