Studios Suspend Film Productions Amid Coronavirus Concerns

Courtesy of Universal Studios
'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' (2018)

Sony has halted production on the Kevin Hart starrer 'The Man From Toronto,' as well as shut down work on 'Shrine' for four weeks.

Amid the growing worldwide concerns about the spread of the coronavirus, studios are suspending and postponing feature film productions.

Warner Bros. has deferred work on The Batman, which has been in production in London since January. "Warner Bros. Pictures feature production of The Batman will hiatus filming for two weeks beginning today," the studio said Saturday in a statement. "The studio will continue to monitor the situation closely."

On Monday, the studio shut down its The Matrix reboot, which had moved from production in San Francisco to Berlin. The studio also said it would not begin filming on Fantastic Beasts 3, which was set to film in London this week.

Netflix's production of its big-budget international heist film Red Notice will pause beginning Monday, lasting for the next two weeks. Dwayne Johnson, who stars in the film along with Gal Gadot and Ryan Reynolds, shared the announcement Saturday in an Instagram post. "It’s my privilege to speak eye to eye with our entire crew to help give a little clarity and guidance, as the most important thing right now is for us to get everyone home to their concerned families," he wrote. 

Universal Pictures' live-action feature productions will slow and go on hiatus starting this weekend due to the new coronavirus outbreak. "The studio continues to monitor the situation closely and will make a determination on when to restart production in the coming weeks," it said Friday in a statement. Titles that will be going on hiatus include Colin Trevorrow's Jurassic World: Dominion, in which Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard will return to star, and Rachel Morrison's boxing biopic Flint Stong, starring Ice Cube.

On Sunday, production on MGM's The Samaritan starring Sylvester Stallone went on hiatus. As a producer on the project, Stallone was part of the decision to shut down filming for a minimum of two weeks as a precaution. 

Production on Sony's horror-thriller Shrine has shut down for four weeks in Boston, and prep for The Man From Toronto, which was filming in Atlanta, has also been paused. The studio had previously suspended preproduction on the drama The Nightingale, which stars Dakota and Elle Fanning. On Monday the studio suspended pre-production on Uncharted, the Tom Holland, Mark Wahlberg video game adaptation. It had been gearing up to film in Berlin and will be suspended for six weeks.

On Monday it was announced that Sony also shut down production on its live-action Cinderella musical, starring Camilla Cabello, in the U.K., citing the new extension to the travel ban imposed by Donald Trump. 

Disney has paused its live-action feature productions, which includes the live-action remake of The Little Mermaid, Peter Pan & Wendy and Shrunk, a sequel to the 1980s classic Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, all of which were in in preproduction. 

Other movies in production shutting down include Home Alone, Ridley Scott’s period drama The Last Duel for 20th Century and Guillermo del Toro’s Searchlight thriller Nightmare Alley. Production on Marvel’s Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings has been halted after director Destin Daniel Cretton self-isolated.

In addition to the studios halting productions, they are also pushing the theatrical releases of their finished features. Universal delayed the ninth Fast & Furious movie by a year, Paramount pushed back The Lovebirds and A Quiet Place Part II, and Disney postponed the release of Mulan, as well as the 20th Century title New Mutants and Searchlight Pictures' Antlers.

March 15, 12:30 p.m. Updated with The Samaritan production details.