This past Tuesday during Disney’s annual shareholder meeting, CEO Bob Chapek continued to underscore that the release date for Marvel’s long-awaited feature Black Widow is May 7, and that the Cate Shortland-directed title will be seen in theaters. Chapek made the same confirmation back on Feb. 11 during the studio’s fiscal Q1 earnings call.
There’s been some intense speculation in the exhibition and rival distribution circles that the Marvel movie will either move once again as overseas markets — which the Scarlett Johansson pic greatly needs to launch — remain in Covid lockdown, or that Disney has some sort of simultaneous theatrical/Disney+ release in its back pocket a la this past weekend’s dud Raya and the Last Dragon, which opened to $8.6M.
Speaking of which, Chapek mentioned nothing about Raya‘s financial success on the Disney+ PVOD side, whereby subscribers had to fork over an additional $30 to watch the animation title. The other whisper that’s been going around is that Disney would make Black Widow available during a truncated theatrical window, followed by a drop on Disney+. This past weekend, Raya had to share the Disney+ menu with Marvel’s series finale for WandaVision, which was available to subscribers for free.