Halloween franchise producer Malek Akkad says Halloween Kills will be "well worth the wait" after Universal Pictures and Blumhouse on Wednesday delayed the slasher sequel until October 2021. Previously set for October 16, 2020, Halloween Kills will now open October 15, 2021, three years after the long-running franchise was revived with 2018's David Gordon Green-directed Halloween, 40-years-later direct sequel to John Carpenter's 1978 original movie. When announcing the "heartbreaking" delay Wednesday, executive producer Carpenter said the delay was to avoid releasing Halloween Kills into a "compromised theatrical experience" amid continued movie theater closures caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
"Moving the release date of Halloween Kills was such a tough decision," Akkad said in a statement to HalloweenMovies.com. "The entire cast and crew have been so excited to share it with the world. But, we all believe it's the right thing to do, as we want the film to be seen in the best format possible. I know that this will be disappointing for Halloween fans. We've always cherished their support and love for the franchise. We hope they'll agree that given the current circumstances, it's the best decision, and that the film will be well worth the wait."
In March, Universal issued The Invisible Man and The Hunt to premium VOD after prematurely ending their theatrical runs in the wake of theater closures. As of May, Universal reportedly claimed $48 million in rental fees for this batch of films that also included Emma and Never Rarely Sometimes Always.
"To me, watching a movie on TV or a show on TV or streaming is the equivalent to a Zoom call, whereas seeing a movie in a theater is the equivalent of a live meeting," Blumhouse founder Jason Blum told The Los Angeles Times in April when asked about a post-pandemic Hollywood. "As much as theaters are clearly suffering now, I think the choice that people have in theaters may change, the amount of time that movies stay in theaters may change, but I don't think theatergoing is going away."
Blum added, "It's going to change, but I don't think it's going away."
In Halloween Kills, the horrors of Halloween night continue when Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), daughter Karen (Judy Greer), and Laurie's granddaughter Allyson (Andi Matichak) realize the Shape survived Laurie's fiery trap set at the end of 2018's Halloween.
Halloween Kills opens October 15, 2021. It will be followed by Halloween Ends, scheduled for October 14, 2022.