Tom Cruise fans who are excited to see Mission: Impossible 7 and Top Gun: Maverick will have to wait a little bit longer. Deadline first reported that Paramount Pictures will move the release date for Mission: Impossible 7 from May 27, 2022 to September 30, 2022. Top Gun: Maverick, which was supposed to hit theaters on November 19, 2021, will take the Memorial Day spot from Mission: Impossible 7.
Not-So-Impossible Reasons for the Delays
While the COVID-19 pandemic has already caused several delays for both films, the ongoing surge of the Delta variant has pushed them back once again.
NRG has polled the moviegoing comfort level in the U.S. from over the last two weeks at a stable 67%, but that estimate is still down eleven points from July. Data from last week reveals that 58% of parents are “very or somewhat comfortable” taking their children to movie theaters, which is down five points from Wednesday and is the lowest number on this measure since late April. Moms brought this decline down seven points to 53%. Additionally, more than twenty-five females (57%) have the lowest personal comfort at movie theaters compared to less than twenty-five males (79%).
Paramount’s most recent theatrically released film, Paw Patrol: The Movie, opened at $13 million in the U.S., but that still isn’t enough for major franchises such as Mission: Impossible and Top Gun. These numbers may also explain why the studio pushed Jackass Forever from October 22, 2021 to February 4, 2022, meaning that no Paramount movie will release in theater for the remainder of the year.
The World is Still in the Danger Zone
Meanwhile, both the comfort in attending movie theaters and the positive outlook on the pandemic has declined overseas from earlier this summer. Many major moviegoing markets such as Australia, Mexico, Japan, and China have experienced significant downturns over the last few months.
Paramount wanting to hold on at releasing Mission: Impossible 7 and Top Gun: Maverick in theaters until later makes sense considering that Mission: Impossible–Fallout, the last entry in the multibillion-dollar film franchise, grossed $791.7 million worldwide, the highest gross for the franchise so far, and the original Top Gun grossed over $357 million when it first hit theaters in 1986.
Hopefully, more people around the world will feel comfortable with attending movie theaters next year and have a chance to experience both Mission: Impossible 7 and Top Gun: Maverick on the big screen.