Warner Bros. Said, "F**K it": Every Blockbuster Coming to HBO Max
By: Domonique Cox-Salberg
And the entertainment industry’s most undecided “f**k it” moment of 2020 goes to Warner Bros. A gutsy move for a major company; the studio announced all their feature films slated for 2021 would be released in theaters on their set dates and HBO Max simultaneously for no extra costs. The Batman dodged a bullet with its 2022 release. Nevertheless, this is a notable break from tradition.
Moreover, seeing as HBO has been struggling with their subscription numbers—at the bottom among other streaming services—they threw up their hands and decided drastic measures may be the only thing allowing them to rise. They certainly could gain a better spot in the streaming wars as Warner Bro. has many amazing IPs.
Another reason they may have jumped to this decision is the surge in new subscriptions after Wonder Woman 1984 was announced to hit theatres and HBO Max Christmas day. Additionally, it should be noted that WarnerMedia, a holder of Warner Bros. assets, is predominantly behind this decision to improve its streaming presence. The CEO of WarnerMedia, Jason Kilar, expresses this in the statement below:
“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 Kilar.
So, this means HBO Max subscribers will get a motion picture about every three weeks available fine print for 30 days at no extra cost before reverting to a traditional release model. It will not be on HBO Max forever, nor will viewers own it, but subscribers can stream it as part of their plan. The film will continue to play exclusively in theaters for the 78-day window. Then, what follows is the usual PVOD (Premium Video On-Demand) for purchase, rental options, and lastly, back to streaming. It will be interesting to see if a spike in piracy happens for these films due to this release format, but either way, what a Christmas gift to movie fans.
Well, that is for all the movie fans in the United States, since, unfortunately, these releases will not be available outside of the states. It is because Warner Bros. has not made any deals to make that happen. Still, other deals have been made in the UK where people can watch Wonder Woman at home but only a month after its original HBO Max/US release. However, with all of this happening, sadly, movie theaters are taking a hit where we most definitely, will see a change in ownership and less operating in the future. We are witnessing Hollywood history with this announcement that may change how moviegoers enjoy entertainment. Though, I, for one, do hope theaters bounce back better than ever. Until then, enjoy the blockbuster from home.
HBO Max 2021 Release Dates (Subject to change)
• December 25, 2020: Wonder Woman 1984
• March 5, 2021: Tom and Jerry
• March 12, 2021: The Many Saints of Newark (The Sopranos prequel)
• May 21, 2021: Godzilla Versus Kong
• June 18, 2021: In the Heights
• August 6, 2021: The Suicide Squad.
• October 1, 2021: Dune
• December 22, 2021: The Matrix 4