In a year where shuffling release dates have become as commonplace as hearing how “unprecedented” everything is, Warner Bros are now deciding to get ahead of the curve and stream its entire 2021 slate concurrently with each respective film’s planned theatrical run.
For the first month of said theatrical runs, the plan entails a limited access period on HBO Max before leaving the content platform and continuing in theatres conventionally. At this point, it’s unclear where they’ll land here in Australia – i.e. Binge, Apple, Amazon, etc. – or even at all. Either way, it will require an additional charge similar to Disney’s VOD rollout of Mulan. Still, the prospect of such a major studio willing to adapt may signal a wider movement on the horizon. And that alone is pretty damn exciting.
The first one through the glass will always get cut, and Warner Bros has certainly been taking it in stride. Exhibiting some daring by allowing blockbusters such as Christopher Nolan’s Tenet to screen when anything remotely affiliated with cinemas was a massive financial risk, as well as Wonder Woman 1984 later his month which is already expected to lose money; The Many Saint of Newark, Space Jam: A New Legacy, Dune, Matrix 4, and The Suicide Squad‘s ensuing performance may inform the industry’s future landscape.
Here’s what Warner Bros will stream + screen next year:
- Mortal Kombat – January 15th
- The Little Things – January 29th
- Tom & Jerry – March 5th
- The Many Saints of Newark (The Sopranos prequel) – March 12th
- Reminiscence – April 16th
- Godzilla vs Kong – May 21st
- The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It – June 4th
- In the Heights – June 18th
- Space Jam: A New Legacy – July 16th
- The Suicide Squad – August 6th
- Dune – October 1st
- Elvis – November 5th
- King Richard – November 19th
- Matrix 4 – December 22nd
- Judas & the Black Messiah – TBA
- Malignant – TBA
- Those Who Wish Me Dead – TBA