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      Warner Bros. debuting 2021 film lineup on HBO Max


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      Warner Bros. is plotting a sweeping response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which has shuttered movie theaters around the country. After announcing that Wonder Woman 1984 will go to HBO Max as well as theaters on Dec. 25, the studio has laid out a similar path for its 2021 slate amid uncertainty about when movie-going will get back to normal.

      The studio announced Thursday day-and-date releases for its 17-film slate, which will hit HBO Max for a one-month window that starts the same day they will be available in U.S. theaters.

      The studio's 2021 slate includes projects such as The Suicide Squad, The Matrix 4,  Dune, Godzilla vs. Kong and Space Jam: A New Legacy. Other films include Little Things, Judas and the Black Messiah, Tom & Jerry, Mortal Kombat, Those Who Wish Me Dead, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, In The Heights, Reminiscence, Malignant, The Many Saints of Newark, King Richard and Cry Macho.

      The unprecedented move is likely to catch theater owners off guard and upsets a model that has been in place for decades. Warner Bros. stresses that these are pandemic-only rules, but once a something is broken, can you really put it back together again? This also raises serious concerns about the landscape of movie-going in 2021.

      Sources say these discussions were kept close to the vest and not shared with many exhibitors. Warner Bros. will likely have to agree to far more generous terms with theater owners to avoid them boycotting their films. Insiders say the Wonder Woman 1984 split of ticket sales is far better for exhibitors than normal. Sources also say the studio did not inform partners such as Legendary, which has Godzilla vs. Kong, that their films were included in this plan.

      “We’re living in unprecedented times which call for creative solutions, including this new initiative for the Warner Bros. Pictures Group,” said Ann Sarnoff, chair and CEO, WarnerMedia Studios and Networks Group “No one wants films back on the big screen more than we do. We know new content is the lifeblood of theatrical exhibition, but we have to balance this with the reality that most theaters in the U.S. will likely operate at reduced capacity throughout 2021. With this unique one-year plan, we can support our partners in exhibition with a steady pipeline of world-class films, while also giving moviegoers who may not have access to theaters or aren’t quite ready to go back to the movies the chance to see our amazing 2021 films. We see it as a win-win for film lovers and exhibitors, and we’re extremely grateful to our filmmaking partners for working with us on this innovative response to these circumstances.”

      “After considering all available options and the projected state of moviegoing throughout 2021, we came to the conclusion that this was the best way for WarnerMedia’s motion picture business to navigate the next 12 months,” said WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar. “More importantly, we are planning to bring consumers 17 remarkable movies throughout the year, giving them the choice and the power to decide how they want to enjoy these films. Our content is extremely valuable, unless it’s sitting on a shelf not being seen by anyone. We believe this approach serves our fans, supports exhibitors and filmmakers, and enhances the HBO Max experience, creating value for all.”

      “This hybrid exhibition model enables us to best support our films, creative partners and moviegoing in general throughout 2021,” said Warner Bros. Pictures Group chairman Toby Emmerich. “We have a fantastic, wide-ranging slate of titles from talented and visionary filmmakers next year, and we’re excited to be able get these movies in front of audiences around the world. And, as always, we’ll support all of our releases with innovative and robust marketing campaigns for their theatrical debuts, while highlighting this unique opportunity to see our films domestically via HBO Max as well.”

      HBO Max is only available in the United States, and Warners' 2021 slate will roll out internationally in theaters as planned.  The move comes after Warners released Christopher Nolan's Tenet in theaters this summer amid challenges faced by the pandemic.

      Universal has already shortened theatrical windows via its unique VOD plan, which was put in place because of the pandemic.

       

      https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/warner-bros-smashes-box-office-windows-will-send-2021-slate-to-hbo-max-and-theaters?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social

       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
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      • Don Draper changed the title to Warner Bros. debuting 2021 film lineup on HBO Max

      This is actually very smart and forward thinking of them because shit gonna be this way at least until Summer, may as well do something different instead of waiting and allowing interest to wane (looks at Disney and Black Widow)

       

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      HBO Max had pretty subscriber numbers compared to other streaming services at the same duration so this should definitely help. It’s also a real big surprise considering how adamant Warner Media were in terms of keeping Tenet releasing theatrically instead of streaming, and their studio WB was regularly seen as the most hesitant to go to streaming with their films. The big question is, how this will affect cinemas in the US?

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      1 hour ago, Tamina’s ligaments said:

      HBO Max had pretty subscriber numbers compared to other streaming services at the same duration so this should definitely help. It’s also a real big surprise considering how adamant Warner Media were in terms of keeping Tenet releasing theatrically instead of streaming, and their studio WB was regularly seen as the most hesitant to go to streaming with their films. The big question is, how this will affect cinemas in the US?

      For now it’ll only be a yearlong rollout schedule but I suspect streaming will be successful enough for Warner (and the other major studios) to provide long term services and theaters post-pandemic will have to innovate to compete. 

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      5 hours ago, Don Draper said:

      For now it’ll only be a yearlong rollout schedule but I suspect streaming will be successful enough for Warner (and the other major studios) to provide long term services and theaters post-pandemic will have to innovate to compete. 

      I know it’s just a year, but it does set a precedent like you say. It’s just crazy that they sacrificed a whole year’s potential box office even with the vaccine on the horizon. Not to mention the fact that HBO Max is only in the US, and they won’t be able to negotiate the best third party deals in other countries which also have differing levels of COVID levels. Either way though, definitely a win for US consumers.

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      15 hours ago, Tamina’s ligaments said:

      I know it’s just a year, but it does set a precedent like you say. It’s just crazy that they sacrificed a whole year’s potential box office even with the vaccine on the horizon. Not to mention the fact that HBO Max is only in the US, and they won’t be able to negotiate the best third party deals in other countries which also have differing levels of COVID levels. Either way though, definitely a win for US consumers.

      I think they probably see what we all see and that just because a vaccine is released, not everyone is going to be immediately comfortable going to a theater. So both options available at the same time might balance it out?

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      12 hours ago, Mariah. said:

      I think they probably see what we all see and that just because a vaccine is released, not everyone is going to be immediately comfortable going to a theater. So both options available at the same time might balance it out?

      I guess so. This is unprecedented so this is really interesting to see.

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      1 hour ago, Don Draper said:

      @Mariah. the fumes already commencing

       

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      He's so damn annoying, like the purist views regarding movie theaters is dumb and privileged ESPECIALLY when we're in a fucking pandemic, and the people putting food on his table and getting his mediocre ass scripts made are demanding their movie escapism safely. They gonna sit on these movies until 2023 or worse, release them traditionally and have people put lives at risk? There will still be movie theaters after this since lots of people still value the experience, he needs to just chill the fuck out and let things subside.

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      11 hours ago, Tamina’s ligaments said:

      It was no surprise he was going to unhappy lol. He wanted to be the one to save movie theatres and he unfortunately failed in that sense. I wouldn’t be surprised if he eventually stops his partnership with Warner.

      I wouldn't be shocked, but him and several others who are making such a fuss right now realistically don't have many other options, especially the ones who hate streaming. The only way I see them getting the leg up is if this experiment fails massively. Otherwise, Warner has always been known as the studio to let creators do whatever they want for hundreds of millions, to varying results. Disney not gonna put out content that's not family friendly or a surefire hit, Universal and Paramount aren't sustainable enough to dole out huge budgets for big swings from creators, let alone studios like Lionsgate. Sony has been on thin ice for years. So the whining is really gonna be hilarious in the end.

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      The fact that Nolan is complaining when TENET is the reason why they are doing this. They released that movie and it FLOPPED. Now why would any studio sit on 17 movies for a year just to sit on the gamble that people are going to be running back to theaters where 1)it might be unsafe and 2)the ticket prices will rise because theaters are going to want to recoup their losses. The cinema experience was already on track to go away in the next decade, this pandemic just fast tracked it. People complaining need to get over it or do pull a tidal and see how far that gets them.

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