Universal Pictures (via Deadline) has removed Illumination’s upcoming animated movie Minions: The Rise of Gru from the global schedule for the foreseeable future. The Minions sequel/Despicable Me prequel, originally scheduled for a July 3, 2020 domestic release, is the latest victim of the devastating global COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Illumination’s animation services are provided by the company’s subsidiary Illumination Mac Guff based in Paris, France. As the country is currently in lockdown, the studio has temporarily closed down, thus being unable to complete the film in time for its intended summer release. No new release date has been assigned as of yet.
Illumination founder and CEO Chris Meledandri made the following unprecedented statement:
“In response to the severity of the situation in France, we are temporarily closing our Illumination Mac Guff studio in Paris. With this decision we are abiding by the French Government’s guidelines and doing everything possible to slow the spread of the virus as we care for our artists and their families. This means we will be unable to finish Minions: The Rise Of Gru in time for our planned global releases in late June and early July. While we all grapple with the enormity of this crisis, we must put the safety and protection of our employees above all. We look forward to finding a new release date for the return of Gru and the Minions.”Chris Meledandri, CEO, Illumination
Illumination’s other upcoming films include the sequel to 2016’s Sing (intended for June 2021), and a planned feature based on the Mario video game franchise co-produced with Nintendo. Delays on those projects are yet to be announced.
Please visit our Animation Calendar to keep informed on these ever-changing release dates.
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Edited by: Kelly Conley