The coronavirus has claimed yet another cinematic victim. After first delaying Bond movie No Time to Die for seven months, the virus has gone on to delay a number of other films. But none have been hit as hard as Fast & Furious 9.
The next installment in the Fast saga was slated to hit theaters on May 22, but it has now been pushed back almost an entire year to April 2, 2021. That is a monstrous delay, especially compared to the delays we’ve seen for other films that have mostly been moved to this summer or fall (though some, like Disney’s live-action Mulan remake, have not yet announced their new dates). The reason why FF9 underwent such a drastic delay probably has to do with the Chinese box office. China is the biggest market for Fast & Furious films, and the country has been hit harder by the coronavirus than any other nation. As such, it will probably be a while before China fully recovers, and the FF franchise likely doesn’t want to take any chances of missing out on their most lucrative audience. Here’s the full statement that announced the film’s delay, via Collider.
To our family of Fast fans everywhere,
We feel all the love and the anticipation you have for the next chapter in our saga.
That’s why it’s especially tough to let you know that we have to move the release date of the film. It’s become clear that it won’t be possible for all of our fans around the world to see the film this May.
We are moving the global release date to April 2021, with North America opening on April 2. While we know there is disappointment in having to wait a little while longer, this move is made with the safety of everyone as our foremost consideration.
Moving will allow our global family to experience our new chapter together. We’ll see you next spring.
Your Fast Family
The ninth installment of the franchise introduces John Cena as a new villain who also happens to be the secret brother of Vin Diesel’s character, Dominic Toretto. The film looks even more bonkers than 2017’s ridiculous Fate of the Furious, but unfortunately, it’s now going to be a while before we’ll get our chance to see it.