Disney's live-action remake of 'Mulan' faces further delays

The highly anticipated remake is now scheduled for an August release

This image released by Disney shows Yifei Liu in the title role of "Mulan." The Walt Disney Co. officially postponed the theatrical release of “Mulan," amid the coronavirus outbreak. It was was set to come out at the end of the month. For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms. For some it can cause more severe illness. (Jasin Boland/Disney via AP)

The release of Disney's live-action remake of Mulan has been delayed for a second time. It will be a blow to cinema operators who want blockbuster movies to draw audiences back in the midst of the pandemic.

Mulan was scheduled to be released in March, but was postponed until Friday, July 24, after cinemas around the world were forced to close because of the coronavirus outbreak.

However, that date has now been pushed back further, to Friday, August 21, the company said in a statement.

(FILES) In this file photo taken on March 09, 2020 US-Chinese actress Yifei Liu attends the world premiere of Disney's "Mulan" at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. 
After more than three months of coronavirus-mandated limbo, Hollywood is headed back to the big screen -- and hoping that Russell Crowe's road rage thriller "Unhinged" will jump-start the recovery. The action film, due out July 10, is set to be the first wide release since US theaters shut their doors in mid-March. Christopher Nolan's much-hyped "Tenet" will follow soon after.
 / AFP / FREDERIC J. BROWN

"While the pandemic has changed our release plans for Mulan and we will continue to be flexible as conditions require, it has not changed our belief in the power of this film and its message of hope and perseverance," Alan Horn and Alan Bergman, co-chairmen of Walt Disney Studios, said in the statement.

The $200 million (Dh734.6m) live-action remake of Disney’s 1998 animated classic stars Liu Yifei in the title role.

Cinema owners around the world had been hoping to offer Mulan in July, as well as Christopher Nolan's thriller Tenet, to help lure audiences back to the big screen. However, both films are now slotted for an August release, with Tenet to be screened on Wednesday, August 12.

Cinemas around the world have been hit hard by coronavirus shutdowns, which began in mid-March, and have had to lay off tens of thousands of employees and borrow funds to stay afloat.

In Dubai, chains including Vox and Reel, have hosted drive-in cinemas in a bid to offer films to audiences in a safe environment.

However, indoor cinemas across Dubai, Ras Al Khaimah, Ajman and Sharjah have now reopened, with strict social-distancing measures in place.

Vox is yet to update its pre-booking system to reflect the new release date for Disney's Mulan. However, audiences can book to see Disney's Onward, Sonic the Hedgehog and The Call of the Wild, which are all currently showing.