Warner Bros to release 2021 films on OTT, theaters simultaneously
Imagine logging into HBO Max one fine morning in 2021 to find all the highly anticipated movie releases by Warner Bros playable with the click of a button! This dream-come-true moment will happen for HBO Max subscribers as Warner Bros has announced the simultaneous release of all its 2021 films in theatres and on the streamer as well. Now, that's some exciting news!
The studio toyed with this idea when it announced the release of Wonder Woman 1984 on December 25 in theatres and on the platform. The call was taken to avoid piracy and provide entertainment to those who may not have access to either theaters or HBO Max. Like in India, theaters are the only option to catch WB films as HBO Max isn't available.
There are 17 films by the studio releasing on different dates throughout 2021, such as Dune, Matrix 4, The Suicide Squad, Godzilla vs. Kong, In The Heights, Space Jam: A New Legacy, Mortal Kombat, Those Who Wish Me Dead, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, and others. These ventures will be available for streaming only for one month after its OTT release.
After the expiry of one month of free streaming of these latest movies, each venture will leave HBO Max. They will be added back to its catalog much later. This technique is introduced to experiment with audience response and income of the studio from traditional theater runs at times when Coronavirus has forced a big theater banner like Cineworld to shut shop globally.
Ann Sarnoff, chairman-CEO, WarnerMedia Studios and Networks Group, reasoned why this model would work. "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 explained.