Amazon Prime Video has been busy trying to use the pandemic to their advantage by snapping up titles formerly scheduled for theatrical release like Coming 2 America and Without Remorse, and now they’ve got their eyes on the sci-fi action film The Tomorrow War. The movie from director Chris McKay (The LEGO Batman Movie) is set in a futuristic conflict against an alien invasion, so humanity decides to level the playing field by drafting soldiers from the past to fight the war. The film stars Chris Pratt, Yvonne Strahovski, Betty Gilpin, Keith Powers, Sam Richardson, and J.K. Simmons.
Originally slated for release on July 23rd, Paramount decided to court streamers and now Variety reports that Amazon Studios is poised to sell for roughly $200 million, although “insiders stress the sale has not been finalized and financial terms have yet to be determined.”
Even if it doesn’t reach $200 million, that seems like a dizzying total for a film where Pratt’s star-power is still debatable (I’d argue his biggest successes were because of the Marvel, Jurassic Park, and LEGO brands while left to his own devices you get Passengers; that’s not a statement on his acting ability as much as it’s difficult to any actor to “open” a movie). Paramount definitely seems to be getting the better end of this deal because I doubt a film without a built-in brand would come anywhere close to sniffing $200 million domestic, although who knows how it would perform internationally.
But those numbers don’t really matter to Amazon, which would get to tout an action sci-fi movie starring Chris Pratt on its service. If they want to compete with the slates of Netflix, Disney+, et al., Amazon is deciding it needs more blockbuster content, and The Tomorrow War fits the definition of a “blockbuster.” We’ll see if it was worth the price tag when it likely debuts on Amazon later this year.