Warner Bros. Pictures Group announced that starting next year, along with traditional theatrical release, they are going to release movies simultaneously on the streaming service HBO Max.
As per their consumer-focused distribution model, Warner Bros. will continue to exhibit the films theatrically worldwide, while adding an exclusive one month access period on the HBO Max streaming platform in the U.S. concurrent with the film’s domestic release.
The hybrid model was created as a strategic response to the impact of the ongoing global pandemic, particularly in the U.S., the mass media and entertainment conglomerate said in a press release.
Following the one month HBO Max access period domestically, each film will leave the platform and continue theatrically in the U.S. and international territories, with all customary distribution windows applying to the title. All films will be available in 4K Ultra HD and HDR on HBO Max, said Ann Sarnoff, Chair and CEO, WarnerMedia Studios and Networks Group.
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, said Sarnoff.
“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,” she added.
Jason Kilar, CEO, WarnerMedia, said the company is planning to release 17 movies in 2021. They are 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 and Matrix 4.
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