Sonic Movie Delayed In China Due To Coronavirus

The Sonic the Hedgehog movie will release in China "once it is appropriate to do so."

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The Sonic the Hedgehog movie is already blazing up the box office charts, and it was set to improve even further with a release in China on February 28. However, Paramount has now delayed the release in China due to ongoing concerns about the Coronavirus.

"Due to the current Coronavirus situation, the China release date of the film Sonic the Hedgehog will be postponed, and we will re-announce the new release date at a later time. Sonic will only be slowing down his pace temporarily, and we look forward to bringing him zooming onto the big screen in China once it is appropriate to do so," Paramount said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.

The statement added: "As the whole country and world unite together to fight the outbreak of Coronavirus, we would like to express our gratitude and respect to all the medical staff, the rescue personnel, and people in service who provide us with much-needed assistance and support during this time."

This news is not a big surprise, as many movie theatre chains in China have been closed since January, citing concerns about the spread of the virus. For some context, in the three weeks after many theatres closed around January 24, box office receipts came out to $3.9 million in total, which compares to $1.52 billion for the same period last year.

China is the world's second-largest movie market globally. Estimates said the shutdown in China could lead to a $1 billion negative impact on global box office results for the year.

Paramount also recently shut down production on the new Mission Impossible movie in Venice, Italy, where there has recently been a Coronavirus outbreak.

Sonic opened with $70 million in the US, which set a record for the best start ever for a video game adaptation. Globally, after two weeks, the movie has now made more than $200 million.

While Sonic had the best start for a video game movie, it still has a lot of work to do to catch up with other video game adaptations. Warcraft is the highest grossing video game movie of all time globally, with more than $439 million at the box office, while Pokemon: Detective Pikachu trails just below with $433 million. Warcraft made a massive amount of money from China ($225M, while Detective Pikachu made $94.7M there).

For more on the Sonic movie, check out GameSpot's roundup of All The Easter Eggs And References You May Have Missed

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