Warner Bros. Will Make 10 Movies Exclusively for HBO Max Next Year
Warner Bros. is set to produce 10 movies exclusively for HBO Max next year, WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar said during an earnings call. The issue of WarnerMedia’s movies releasing simultaneously on HBO Max and in theaters has been contentious, but it appears the filmmaker won’t abandon either format in any significant way yet.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Kilar stated that Warner Bros. will produce around 10 movies that will be available exclusively on HBO Max on “day one” in 2022. The comment was made between remarks about the state of theatrical releases, including the box office performance of Godzilla vs. Kong. However, Kilar did not state what movies are coming exclusively to HBO Max, pre-existing or otherwise.
One film recently confirmed as an HBO Max exclusive, however, is Batgirl which recently cast Leslie Grace as its lead.
Kilar noted the difference in audience appeal between big tentpole features and smaller fare, saying that the world is not “going back to the way the world was in 2015, 2016 or 2017 where windows were quite lengthy between theatrical and home exhibition.”
Movie fans can expect shorter windows between theatrical releases of certain Warner Bros. films and their home video releases.
“Obviously, 2022 will be a new year for film. Everyone is going to be experimenting with windows, they are going to get shorter, not longer, in terms of being able to see movies sooner,” said Andy Forsell, executive VP of WarnerMedia Direct-to-Consumer, in an interview with THR. “We have learned so much this year about how to use film and episodic together to really engage people and drive higher retention.”
For now, Warner Bros. has already signed a multi-year deal with Cineworld’s Regal cinemas, which gives Regal the exclusive rights to show WB films the same day as their HBO Max premiere date through the rest of 2021. Starting in 2022, Regal gets to show Warner Bros. films in U.S. theaters for 45 days before they hit streaming platforms. It’s unclear if any parameters of the deal have been altered following WarnerMedia’s latest statements.
You can check out the latest releases on HBO Max here. HBO Max will inevitably look at the positive performance of films like Space Jam: A New Legacy as a bellwether for future business strategies.
Joseph Knoop is a writer/producer for IGN.
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