‘Dune’, ‘Matrix 4’, ‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ and More to Hit HBO Max and Theaters Simultaneously!!

Huge news out of Warner Bros. today. Following the announcement that the highly anticipated Wonder Woman 1984 will be released on HBO Max on Christmas Day for a limited one-month engagement on the streaming service (in addition to a concurrent theatrical release where theaters are open), the studio announced today that all of its 2021 films will follow this same release model.Yes indeed, movies like Dune, Matrix 4, and Godzilla vs. Kong will be released theatrically worldwide, but concurrent with the domestic theatrical release the movies will also be streaming exclusively on HBO Max for one month. After that one month period is over, the film will depart HBO Max and continue to be available in theaters worldwide, at which time it will follow all customary distribution windows applying to the title – which means after it leaves HBO Max, it will later still have a full Digital HD and Blu-ray/DVD release before eventually returning to the streamer.The 2021 Warner Brosb. films that are expected to be released next year – and that are expected to follow this “on HBO Max and in theaters at the same time” model – include:

  • The Little Things
  • Judas and the Black Messiah
  • Tom & Jerry
  • Godzilla vs. Kong
  • Mortal Kombat
  • Those Who Wish Me Dead
  • The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It
  • In the Heights
  • Space Jam: A New Legacy
  • The Suicide Squad
  • Reminiscence
  • Malignant
  • Dune
  • The Many Saints of Newark
  • King Richard
  • Cry Macho
  • Matrix 4

All films will be available in 4K Ultra HD and HDR on HBO Max.

This hybrid model was created as a strategic response to the impact of the ongoing global pandemic.

“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 (of which Warner Bros. is part). “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 Jason Kilar, CEO, WarnerMedia. “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 Toby Emmerich, Chairman, Warner Bros. Pictures Group. “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.”

Make no mistake: this is a massive shift in the entertainment landscape, and one that quite literally changes everything. How rival studios like Disney and Universal respond is now the question on everyone’s minds, as theater chains are still struggling to make it through this pandemic. Will enough people still go to see these films in theaters if they’re available on HBO Max? Will indies and prestige pictures still get theatrical releases? Are theaters just going to be reserved for the biggest movies from each studio? Will this trend continue in 2022? There are so many questions up in the air right now. This is huge.



via Collider

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