Many european cinemas and some of the united States have been forced to close its doors until further notice due to the rapid spread of the coronavirus. This has affected many movies that were about to be released and consequently has affected the box office, it has reached its lowest point in at least 20 years. Many distributors are rethinking their business strategies. NBCUniversal has decided to take the reins and change the tide: instead of postponing the premieres, launch the on-demand movies at the same time that it premiered in movie theaters that are still open.
NBCUniversal announced due to the rapid developments and big changes that are hurting consumers in their daily lives, now is the right time to offer the option for a simultaneous release in cinemas and on demand. Will the movies that are currently in vogue as ‘The invisible man’, ‘Emma’ or ‘The hunt’ but also those which are pending release as ‘Trolls 2: world Tour’.
The films will be available in a rental service for 48 hours at a price of 19,99 usdprice , a price similar to the cost of a movie ticket in the united States. It is still unknown what platform will be or if this will come to Europe also. What is expected is that the first films to arrive from next Friday.
The CEO of NBCUniversal, Jeff Shell, has announced that it is not a general policy for the entire calendar 2020, but that will last only as long as the crisis of the coronavirus and that later will make the right decisions. “Universal Pictures has a wide and diverse range of films and 2020 is no exception. Instead of delaying these films (…) we wanted to offer an option so that people can view these titles in their houses and that are accessible and affordable“said Shell.
This measure marks the first time in history that a major distributor will jump one of the display windows. There has to be a period between the time that the movie premieres in movie theaters until they can watch at home. However, due to the circumstances, NBCUniversal offered simultaneously.
Other distributors to follow in their footsteps
After the decision of the new distribution offered by Universal, other film distributors such as Warner Bros. and STX Entertainment have wanted to follow in his footsteps. ‘Birds of Prey (and the fantabulosa emancipation of Harley Quinn)’ and ‘The Gentlemen: The gentlemen of the mafia’ will be available on-demand starting on the 24th of march, according to ComingSoon.
Both films, which were premiered in U.s. theaters on February 7 and 24 January, respectively, they had programmed their digital releases in mid-April, thus complying with the display windows. However, as Universal have decided to bring forward their premieres on streaming to benefit consumers.