The long-delayed adaptation of Eoin Colfer book series Artemis Fowl will no longer be arriving in cinemas this August, in a surprise move from Disney, the film directed by Kenneth Branagh won't see the inside of a cinema at all. In a statement from Disney, it has been revealed that Artemis Fowl will be making its debut this summer on Disney+.
"With audiences largely unable to attend theatres in the current environment, we are thrilled to offer the premiere of ‘Artemis Fowl’ on Disney+. Director Kenneth Branagh and his spectacular cast take viewers right into the vibrant, fantasy world of the beloved book, which fans have been waiting to see brought to life onscreen for years. It’s great family entertainment that is the perfect addition to Disney+’s summer lineup."
Artemis Fowl was initially due to arrive back in August last year, but owing to the Disney/Fox merger (and alleged negative test screenings), the big-budget adaptation was pushed back to May 29, 2020. While the response from fans of the books was mixed, the movie didn't undergo extensive reshoots, but that hasn't prevented the adaptation as being thought of a troubled project. Disney had an entire catalogue of movies to release from the Fox deal, many of which have tanked at the box office (yes X-Men Dark Phoenix we're looking at you). Trying to give a franchise starter like Artemis Fowl the best chance of finding an audience is understandable, a task made more difficult when Disney acquired Fox and a bunch of completed projects. That said, a big-budget fantasy adventure aimed at kids available on Disney+ at a time of social distancing, doesn't sound like a bad thing right now.
Meanwhile, Disney recently announced new release dates for all forthcoming Marvel projects with some titles being significantly delayed. Starring Ferdia Shaw, Lara McDonnell, Josh Gad, Tamara Smart, Nonso Anozie, Colin Farrell, and Judi Dench. Artemis Fowl will be available exclusively on Disney+ sometime this summer.