Word on the Street: Regal Cinemas to Temporarily Close Their Doors + 2019’s ‘The Lion King’ Will Receive a Second Film

For this month’s Word on the Street story, I was only going to talk about 2019’s ‘The Lion King’ receiving a second film. However, when I heard about Cineworld’s recent decision, I just had to talk about it. Yesterday, on October 4th, Chris Lindahl from IndieWire reported “a temporary suspension” is being placed on the United States and United Kingdom locations of Regal Cinemas. Chris also said this plan would start on October 8th. Cineworld, the parent company of Regal Cinemas, claimed in an official statement the closure “is not a decision we made lightly”. This closure being temporary is a silver lining. However, I do feel bad for Regal’s employees and patrons.

Others have also talked about this story, including Todd Russell from Movies, Movies, Movies, and Geeky and Kneon from Clownfish TV. Todd’s take on this piece of movie news brings up a good point. In his article, Todd questions Regal’s practices for new releases, asking the question, “if you temporarily ignore the theatrical window and embrace more direct to streaming titles you can show plenty of new movies, so why won’t you try that?” Here’s another question that should be asked; why would Regal decide to re-release Alita: Battle Angel if they had even the slightest concern of their theaters staying open? Until newer blockbuster titles can come back to the big screen, Regal could have shown older films to keep themselves afloat. While this idea has been adopted by other theaters, it seems like it would have been a win-win for Alita’s fans and Regal. According to Clownfish TV’s Kneon, an online campaign created by fans of Alita revolved around their effort to have Alita: Battle Angel re-released. Three days later, on October 3rd, Kneon announced the campaign was successful, with his video featuring a tweet from Regal Cinemas about the news. Regal’s tweet was posted on October 2nd, two days before IndieWire’s Chris Lindahl reported on Cineworld’s decision. Alita: Battle Angel was originally scheduled for an October 30th re-release.

Sources for this piece of movie news:

Clownfish TV’s videos (you can type these titles in the search bar on Youtube): ‘Alita: Battle Angel RE-RELEASED to Theaters? Fans Want #RereleaseAlita to Trend!’, ‘Alita Army VICTORIOUS! Theaters to #ReReleaseAlita Beginning this Month!’, and ‘Regal Cinemas SHUT DOWN! Hollywood Will Take YEARS to Recover!’ (these videos may contain language)

In this screenshot I took with my phone, Regal’s official tweet about Alita: Battle Angel‘s re-release is shown. The circle and arrow in the picture stress the dates of the tweet’s release and Alita: Battle Angel‘s planned re-release. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.

While this isn’t a recent piece of movie news, it’s one I haven’t seen a lot of people talk about. Last week, Rebecca Rubin and Brent Lang from Variety revealed the 2019 remake of Disney’s The Lion King will receive a second film. The two authors said “the new movie will partly focus on the early years of Mufasa”. The screenwriter from the 2019 movie, Jeff Nathanson, will join the team, with Barry Jenkins directing the film. Since we’re on the subject of The Lion King, I’d like to share one of Rafiki’s quotes from the 1994 film; “Oh yes, the past can hurt. But from the way I see it, you can either run from it, or…learn from it”. With this new creative decision, it seems like Disney is running from their past, especially when it features mistakes. Two years ago, the studio released Solo: A Star Wars Story, a movie that revolved around the early years of Han Solo. The film’s overall box office results were $393,151,347, making it one of the lowest grossing films in the franchise’s history. Solo: A Star Wars Story contributed to a problem Disney has had for years; choosing not to tell newer stories in favor of tried-and-true properties. Even though this new chapter of The Lion King is in pre-production, Disney’s choices show they are refusing to follow Simba’s lead by learning from their past.

Sources for this piece of movie news:

https://variety.com/2020/film/news/lion-king-sequel-director-barry-jenkins-1234786355/

https://www.the-numbers.com/movie/Solo-A-Star-Wars-Story#tab=box-office

https://www.the-numbers.com/movies/franchise/Star-Wars#tab=summary

Empty theater photo created by rawpixel.com at freepik.com. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Background photo created by rawpixel.com – http://www.freepik.com</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

What are your thoughts on these pieces of movie news? Is there a theater open near you? Let me know in the comment section.

Stay safe.

Sally Silverscreen

7 thoughts on “Word on the Street: Regal Cinemas to Temporarily Close Their Doors + 2019’s ‘The Lion King’ Will Receive a Second Film

  1. I’m not surprised about theaters closing even though I haven’t been inside a movie theater since 2018.

    I heard about that not live-Action prequel of TLK from another post. Wow, Disney is far beyond desperate over here as they rehash their IPs. I wonder if this is going to bring more ill will as more people find out about the existence of Kimba, The Lion’s Share documentary on Netflix, the insulting action of trademarking the phrase “Hakuna Matata”, or the other nefarious things that company has done involving that franchise. I just shook my head hearing about this. It reminds me of those direct to video sequels and prequels Disney used to make in the 90s and 00s, but in CGI form.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for checking out my article, Ospreyshire! I haven’t seen any of these newer Disney remakes, but I have heard mostly mixed to negative reviews for them. I’d argue the “live action” remakes are worse than the straight to video/DVD sequels and prequels. This is because their intention seemed to be expanding the story, not ruin what came before it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No problem! The most recent one I saw was the Aladdin one and even then I haven’t watched that many of the remakes. A lot of them have been mixed to negative from what I’ve seen. It’s just hubris on Disney’s part with their complacency of rehashing their IPs. That’s an interesting point when it comes to the live action remakes compared to the Disquels. Not that most of the Disquels were great anyway since they were there as placeholders, but some of them actually had more effort with the stories compared to the remakes. The fact that there’s already a “live action” Lion King remake even though it’s just CGI and there’s a prequel in production is just beyond arrogant especially with all the controversy, cultural appropriation, and plagiarism associated with that 90s Disney movie franchise.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You do bring up an excellent point about the “Disquels” (a name that I might use in the future). Yes, some of these movies were better than others. But they did try to put something new on the table. I also agree with your perspective on Disney rehashing their pre-existing work. To an extent, I feel the same way about Hallmark. More often than not, Hallmark Channel tells the same types of stories in their films, sometimes using the same actors and similar small-town backdrops. They are capable of telling so many kinds of stories. But, for whatever reason, they are choosing to hold themselves back creatively.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thanks. I first heard the term Disquel from the blogger Fiddletwix from The Anime Madhouse in case you’re wondering, so credit to her. https://fiddletwix.wordpress.com/misc-reviews/dissecting-the-disquels/

        Yeah, and the rehashing is worse than I thought. I found out from Fiddletwix that a bunch of shows and movies are getting the remake or prequel treatment on Disney+ like that Cruella movie, Chip & Dale remake, Proud family remake, a live action Aladdin side-story, and there’s going to be a live action version of Robin Hood which made my brain hurt. Why make another “live action” movie of an animated work which had literally no human characters? That’s just complacent and desperate of them.

        Hallmark suffers from this, too? Sorry to hear that. At least they make original screenplays, but it’s a shame with them rehashing storylines and character concepts.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Sally,

    Thank you for this informative article of recent film news. Edwards Cinema in Temecula, CA, which is very near where I live, was open for business on Saturday. Although my family doesn’t go to movie theaters, it was great to see the activity around the lit marquis. Also, you made an excellent point about Disney not learning from its past. I was fascinated to learn about the new “Lion King” film.

    By the way, PEPS is hosting three blogathons in the remainder of 2020, The 4th Annual Great Blogathon in October (https://pureentertainmentpreservationsociety.wordpress.com/2020/09/22/announcing-the-4th-annual-great-breening-blogathon/), The Third Annual Claude Rains Blogathon in November (https://pureentertainmentpreservationsociety.wordpress.com/2020/10/01/an-old-friend-is-never-an-added-guest-please-join-us-for-the-third-annual-claude-rains-blogathon/), and The 2nd Happy Holidays Blogathon
    (https://pureentertainmentpreservationsociety.wordpress.com/2020/10/01/announcing-the-2nd-happy-holidays-blogathon/). If you could join one or more of these blogathons, that would be wonderful. We could really use your talent!

    Yours Hopefully,

    Tiffany Brannan

    Liked by 1 person

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