The coronavirus pandemic has thrown Marvel Studio's carefully orchestrated Phase Four lineup of movies and shows into disarray. Black Widow's theatrical release is delayed, while filming on Disney+ shows like Loki, WandaVision, and Falcon and Winter Soldier has shut down indefinitely. But there's a bright spot in all this gloom.
One special effects company involved in The Eternals recently announced it's successfully transitioned to working from home, confirming that the millennia-spanning Marvel won't be delayed — at least over VFX issues. Scanline VFX tweeted the news on Tuesday, revealing that the studio had successfully transitioned to remote work.
"As of Monday, all 650 of Scanline's crew across our Los Angeles, Vancouver, Montreal, London, Munich, Stuttgart, and Seoul studios are working successfully from home," the company announced, adding that Scanline is prepared to "support our clients and the wider VFX community" in the coming weeks and months.
Scanline also touted its ability to maintain digital security remotely and its in-house "Eyeline Next" video conference software. Presumably, if Scanline can keep working remotely, then other VFX studios can too. Scanline could even help other companies implement the technology they need to shift into working at home.
In the short term, at least this means Eternals won't be delayed because VFX work has to stop. Filming on the movie wrapped before the coronavirus pandemic forced productions around the world to halt. So barring any significant reshoots, it should be on track to release in November 2020 as planned. Of course, that's assuming Covid-19 has abated by then and theaters can re-open.
It's also worth noting that given the puzzle-piece nature of Marvel's cinematic universe, Eternals could be delayed even if it's ready to release in November. The movie's plot could easily depend on details established in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, which was set for an August premiere on Disney+ but was forced to pause production.
Until Disney makes an official announcement and reorders Marvel's Phase Four lineup, anything seems possible.