Godzilla vs. Kong was pushed back eight months for a November 2020 release, but why was the movie delayed? It was originally given a May 29, 2020 release date way back in October 2015 when it was officially confirmed that Legendary and Warner Bros. had plans to pit Godzilla and King Kong against each other. This date was later changed to March 13, 2020 in early-2019, but just a few months later it's changed again.
Directed by Adam Wingard, Godzilla vs. Kong is the fourth installment in Legendary's MonsterVerse. Godzilla vs. Kong is only the second film where the two pop culture icons appear together on screen. The two haven't traded blows since Toho's crossover movie King Kong vs. Godzilla, which was released in 1962. Their upcoming showdown is said to be a "spectacular battle for the ages". During the movie, Monarch will explore the origins of the Titans beneath King Kong's home, Skull Island. The events of the film were set up with multiple teases of King Kong in the credits of Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Godzilla vs. Kong will feature a portion of the cast from King of the Monsters, including Kyle Chandler, Millie Bobbie Brown, and Zhang Ziyi.
It was reported this week that Warner Bros. has decided to delay Godzilla vs. Kong's release date by eight months, which moves the film back to November 20, 2020. As fans waited for a Godzilla vs. Kong trailer, there was a growing concern that a delay could be in the cards. There's been talk of a delay since early June, following the poor performance of the last MonsterVerse movie at the box office. At $385.9 million, Godzilla King of the Monsters made considerably less than both Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island, despite being on a slightly larger budget. While not necessarily a box office bomb, King of the Monsters failed to meet the studio's expectations.
At the time, Warner Bros. studio chairman Toby Emmerich said that "if" Godzilla vs. Kong was delayed, it would be because the studio wanted to make it sure it delivered an "A+ movie". No reason has been given now that the delay has become official, but it can be assumed that Emmerich's explanation sums up the studio's reasoning for pushing the movie back eight months. There's also the fact that being in theaters in late November could allow Godzilla vs. Kong to take advantage of the holiday crowd.
The future of the MonsterVerse could depend on Godzilla vs. Kong. This is its biggest movie by far, and its failure could doom the franchise. Though production wrapped up in April, the studio could benefit from an extended period of post-production to weed out any potential problems and fine-tune the project. If the MonsterVerse is to have any life beyond 2020, Godzilla vs. Kong needs to be a hit.