'Peter Rabbit 2'.

‘Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway’.

Due to open in Australia on March 19, Will Gluck’s Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway has been moved to September – the second major release to be postponed after the James Bond adventure No Time to Die.

Sony Pictures decided today to push back the worldwide release of the sequel to avoid the disruption caused by the coronavirus, which has closed cinemas in China, France and Italy and cruelled ticket sales in other markets including Korea.

The live-action/CGI animated family film co-produced by Animal Logic Entertainment and Gluck’s Olive Bridge Entertainment features Rose Byrne, Margot Robbie, Domhnall Gleeson, David Oyelowo, Elizabeth Debicki and James Corden as Peter.

The first film raked in $26.7 million in Australia in 2018 and $US351.3 million worldwide, including $US236 million from international markets.

The sequel was due to open in the last week of March in Europe and in the US on April 3. The new dates are August 7 in Europe and September 10 here.

The decision is a blow to Aussie exhibitors who were reeling after MGM, Universal Pictures and the Bond producers Michael G Wilson and Barbara Broccoli decided to shift No Time to Die from April 8 to November 12.

Exhibitors will be hoping that DreamWorks Animation’s Trolls World Tour, which Universal moved up to March 26, will help fill the gap.

And that Disney sticks with the April 30 release of Black Widow, the Marvel movie starring Scarlett Johansson which marks the Hollywood debut of director Cate Shortland.

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