Hollywood studios are pulling movie releases from Russia
The five major Hollywood studios are taking a stance against Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Universal, Paramount, and Sony have joined Disney and Warner Bros. in halting the releases of their upcoming films in the territory. Most of them had tentpole debuts on the docket.
Disney was the first to make moves on Monday, as Pixar's Turning Red, which is going straight to Disney+ in the U.S., was once scheduled for distribution in Russia on March 10.
"Given the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine and the tragic humanitarian crisis, we are pausing the release of theatrical films in Russia, including the upcoming Turning Red from Pixar," a Disney spokesperson said in a statement to EW. "We will make future business decisions based on the evolving situation. In the meantime, given the scale of the emerging refugee crisis, we are working with our NGO partners to provide urgent aid and other humanitarian assistance to refugees."
Warner Bros. followed suit shortly after. Days before the release of Robert Pattinson-led The Batman, which was scheduled to open in Russian theaters this Friday, the premiere plan has been paused.
"In light of the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, WarnerMedia is pausing the release of its feature film The Batman in Russia," a Warner Bros. spokesperson told the Associated Press. "We will continue to monitor the situation as it evolves. We hope for a swift and peaceful resolution to this tragedy."
Sony, which was planning to release Jared Leto-led Spider-Man spin-off Morbius in Russia in April, was the third major studio to join the movement.
"Given the ongoing military action in Ukraine and the resulting uncertainty and humanitarian crisis unfolding in that region, we will be pausing our planned theatrical releases in Russia, including the upcoming release of Morbius," a Sony representative told EW. "Our thoughts and prayers are with all those who have been impacted and hope this crisis will be resolved quickly."
A rep for Paramount confirmed Tuesday that the studio will also be pausing theatrical releases, including The Lost City and Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
"We stand by all those impacted by the humanitarian crisis across Ukraine, Russia, and our international markets and will continue to monitor the situation as it unfolds," the studio said.
Universal didn't mention specific films that would be impacted, but said Tuesday: "In response to the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, Universal Pictures has paused planned theatrical releases in Russia."
Russia isn't a major market when it comes to international box office revenue, though the territory commonly ranks among the top 12.
Since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his forces to invade the sovereign nation of Ukraine, other global organizations have spoken out against his actions.
The European Broadcasting Union banned Russia from competing in this year's Eurovision Song Contest, while the International Olympics Committee's executive board urged all international sports federations to cancel any events planned in Russia and Belarus.
This article has been updated with statements from Paramount and Universal.
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