Disney CEO Bob Chapek announced that Marvel Studios’ Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and 20th Century Studios’ Free Guy will both open exclusively in theaters and will play for 45 days before they transition to streaming, reports Variety. The outlet adds that the decision to release the films exclusively in theaters was based on “recent signs of increased confidence in moviegoing,” according to Chapek, who also noted that “flexibility is a key component of our distribution strategy,” including the hybrid releases between movie theaters and streaming.
Starring Ryan Reynolds, the sci-fi action comedy Free Guy will arrive in theaters on August 13, while the Simu Liu-led Shang-Chi, based on the Marvel Comics, will debut on September 3.
Marvel Studios’ Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings stars Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, who must confront the past he thought he left behind when he is drawn into the web of the mysterious Ten Rings organization. The film also stars Tony Leung as Wenwu, Awkwafina as Shang-Chi’s friend Katy and Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan, as well as Fala Chen, Meng’er Zhang, Florian Munteanu and Ronny Chieng.
Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings is directed by Destin Daniel Cretton and produced by Kevin Feige and Jonathan Schwartz, with Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, and Charles Newirth serving as executive producers. David Callaham & Destin Daniel Cretton & Andrew Lanham wrote the screenplay for the film.
Shawn Levy (Stranger Things, Night at the Museum franchise) directed Free Guy from a script by Matt Lieberman written in 2016. In the vein of hits such as Wreck-It-Ralph, Free Guy will follow Guy, a lonely bank teller who discovers he is actually a background character in an open-world video game entitled Free City and works to prevent the makers of the game from shutting it down with the help of an avatar.
In addition to Ryan Reynolds, the cast also includes Killing Eve‘s Jodie Comer, Get Out‘s Lil Rel Howery, Stranger Things‘ Joe Keery, Thor: Ragnarok‘s Taika Waititi, and Blindspotting‘s Utkarsh Ambudkar. Free Guy is produced by Reynolds, Levy, Sarah Schecter, and Greg Berlanti.