LOS ANGELES, March 9 (Reuters) – Walt Disney Co. held a red carpet premiere for its action epic “Mulan” on Monday, pushing ahead with the movie’s rollout even though the coronavirus spread will keep the film out of China, the second-largest film market, indefinitely.
Warner Bros. has not delayed any film openings, Goldstein said, “but we have an open mind. We will have to look at everything and see how it unfolds.”
The National Association of Theatre Owners said moviegoing remained healthy in most areas and cinemas will remain open “in line with local conditions.”
This past weekend, ticket sales in the United States and Canada, the world’s biggest box office market, rose 1.2 percent from a week earlier to $100.7 million, according to measurement firm Comscore.
“Mulan,” a $200 million live-action remake of Disney’s animated classic, has been expected to rank as one of the company’s biggest hits of the year.
The movie was tailored to appeal especially to the Chinese market. The story features a Chinese heroine and an all-Asian cast, and parts were filmed in China. The central character is played by Yifei Liu, a film and TV actress well known in China.
“My heart goes out to everybody in China and around the world that is affected,” “Mulan” director Niki Caro said on the red carpet on Monday. “When we do have the opportunity to bring this movie back home to China, it’s going to be the most wonderful celebration.”
“Mulan” was made for “a global audience,” producer Chris Bender said at the premiere. “We want everybody to see it.”
Dergarabedian said “Mulan” will be an important test of moviegoing amid the coronavirus outbreak. “This is a situation that is changing day by day,” he said.
It is unclear when Chinese movie theaters will reopen. The movie is set to debut in the United States on March 27.