Mission: Impossible 7 has been our COVID-19 canary in the coal mine regarding the pandemic. At the end of February 2020, they were the first major production to get shut down due to the virus, and they have had a hard time getting things back off the ground ever since then. We saw some of a stunt for the movie during the Paramount Pictures presentation during CinemaCon, but it appears that things are still not going well behind the scenes. According to Variety, Mission: Impossible 7 and 8 have been delayed yet another year to 2023 and 2024, respectively.
"After thoughtful consideration, Paramount Pictures and Skydance have decided to postpone the release dates for Mission: Impossible 7 & 8 in response to delays due to the ongoing pandemic. The new release dates will be July 14, 2023, and June 28, 2024, respectively," the companies said in a joint statement. "We look forward to providing moviegoers with an unparalleled theatrical experience."
Mission: Impossible 7 was supposed to come out later this year on September 30, 2022, while 8 held some prime real estate on July 7, 2023. Both movies now have some nice summer release dates, which is where the Mission: Impossible movies have cleaned up at the box office. Paramount has very much been playing it safe when it comes to their releases and even more so when it comes to their huge movies with massive budgets. They don't appear to be risking something like the Mission: Impossible films or Top Gun: Maverick underperforming at the box office due to the pandemic. Those budgets are just too big with too much on the line.
In terms of other 2022 releases from Paramount that aren't Mission: Impossible and headlined by Tom Cruise, there are some on the docket that could bring in some money. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 comes out in April 2022 after the first movie did a lot better than anyone thought it would and was one of the best performing movies of 2020. The Lost City also comes out in March, and there are a few other movies that they have announced that we don't know much about yet. There have been rumors that Paramount might be trying to get out of the big blockbuster game, and not wanting those last big entries to fall short makes a lot of sense. We'll have to see if any of these other Paramount movies make it to the big screen with a very uncertain late winter and spring movie season ahead of us.