Wonder Woman 1984 director Patty Jenkins has warned that governments must provide financial lifelines to cinemas, or the multiplex experience could disappear permanently.
Jenkins has seen her comic book sequel delayed on three occasions since the coronavirus pandemic hit in March.
In an interview with Reuters, the 49-year-old filmmaker said: “If we shut this down, this will not be a reversible process. We could lose movie theater-going forever.”
Jenkins said she hopes that Wonder Woman 1984, which is currently set for a release over Christmas, will be “one of the very first ones to come back” and reopen cinemas.
Watch: Trailer for Wonder Woman 1984
Her comments come in the wake of the news that Cineworld/Regal has closed all of the screens which reopened over the cinema in both the UK and the USA.
Read more: 2020 movies still coming to UK cinemas
Jenkins added: “It could be the kind of thing that happened to the music industry, where you could crumble the entire industry by making it something that can’t be profitable.
“I don’t think any of us want to live in a world where the only option is to take your kids to watch a movie in your own living room and not have a place to go for a date.”
Wonder Woman 1984 will bring back Gal Gadot as the titular Amazonian hero, grappling with the 1980s, rather than the First World War setting of the ultra-successful 2017 film.
Chris Pine is also back in the fold as Steve Trevor, despite the character’s death in the first movie, with Kristen Wiig and Pedro Pascal on villain duties.
Read more: Jenkins has Wonder Woman 3 all planned out
Wonder Woman 1984 had been rumoured to join other Warner Bros films, such as Scoob! and Ben Affleck starrer The Way Back, in heading to VOD — a rumour Jenkins shot down on Twitter.
As things stand, Wonder Woman 1984 is one of the last blockbusters standing in 2020, holding firm with a Christmas Day release date all over the world.
Disney still has Ryan Reynolds comedy Free Guy on the slate for December, while Sony has the Peter Rabbit sequel and Warner Bros is also pushing ahead with Death on the Nile.