WEEKLY FILM INDUSTRY NEWS DIGEST, UPDATED MONDAY OCTOBER 26
Don’t Hold Your Breath Waiting To See 007 Film ‘No Time To Die’ On Streamer...
Bloomberg wrote about a rumor that has been making the rounds the last week and a half, that MGM offered the film to streamers Netflix, Apple and Amazon for a proposed one year license of $600 million. Exploratory dialogue between MGM and streamers did happen late September, when MGM decided to move the Bond film out of its Thanksgiving slot. The studio and Eon also considered doing a PVOD deal, like the one Disney did with Mulan, charging viewers directly. But Deadline hears none of the streamers was willing to put up more than half the amount asked for the one year license. More importantly, Deadline hears that James Bond franchise principal producer Barbara Broccoli flatly nixed the deal... It is also conceivable that if a vaccine doesn’t materialize by the middle of next year, that the wisdom of a big bucks streaming bow for Bond might look much better.
James Bond Film ‘No Time to Die’ Explored $600 Million Sale to Streaming Services
MGM, the studio behind the film, reportedly lost between $30 million to $50 million due to the delays, insiders said...The film costs more than $250 million to produce and has lined up several promotional partnerships to help defray those costs — including Land Rover, Omega watches and Heineken. Those companies may have been expecting the film to hit theaters and might not be thrilled with a streaming-only bow.
AT&T (owner of Warner Bros) CEO Expects "Choppy" Theatrical Recovery
"We’re still committed to putting some content" into cinemas where it makes sense, the AT&T CEO said, but warned he was "not optimistic" for a "huge" theatrical recovery late this year or in early 2021, predicting the business would remain "choppy."
WarnerMedia has focused much of its attention on growing streaming service HBO Max, which it launched in late May. Stankey on Thursday's call reiterated plans for an international rollout next year, with a focus on Latin America and parts of Western Europe. And he said the launch of an advertising VOD version of the service will be a key part of the firm's strategy to make HBO Max a service that can attract as broad a user base as possible.https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/att-ceo-sees-choppy-theatrical-recovery-says-tenet-was-no-home-run
HBO Max Reaches 28.7M, Including 8.6M "Activated," Subscribers
"The growth and scale of HBO Max continues to show strong momentum, with activations more than doubling since last quarter to 8.6 million, and HBO/HBO Max subscribers up to 38 million, exceeding [the] initial end of year target of 36 million," the company said on Thursday. "HBO and HBO Max subs top 57 million worldwide. HBO Max investment drove subscriber growth: 28.7 million total HBO Max subscribers."
It added that an HBO Max advertising-supported service was on track to launch in 2021....At $15 per month, the service is one of the more expensive streaming products on the market. But because it costs the same as HBO, many preexisting subscribers to the premium cable network were grandfathered into HBO Max at no additional price.https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/hbo-max-reaches-28-7-million-subscribers
Netflix Misses Subscriber And Earnings Forecasts In Q3 SetbackNetflix fell short of its own guidance for earnings per share and subscriber growth in the third quarter,
Global subscribers totaled 195.15 million by September 30, up from 192.95 million as of June 30. The company had predicted it would add 2.5 million new subscribers, so the growth of 2.2 million was well short and the smallest of any quarter in years...
AMC Entertainment Sees Q3 Sales Plunge, Had $419M In Cash As Of Sept. 30
AMC Entertainment expects revenues for the three months ended September 30 of $119 million, versus nearly $1.32 billion for the prior year’s quarter, and the struggling theater chain anticipates material write-downs of assets, according to an SEC filing...The high debt racked up by acquisitions before COVID has become a major problem as the virus drags on and the company has to divert a significant portion of its cash flow to interest payments. AMC also said it will sell up to 15 million shares to raise fresh cash. It recently raised close to $55 million selling the same number of shares.
Japan’s ‘Demon Slayer’ Kills It With Record $44M Opening
Big news this weekend out of Japan where anime adaptation Demon Slayer The Movie: Mugen Train shattered all-time opening records. The film, which debuted on Friday October 16, as opposed to the usual Saturday/Sunday session, grossed $44M (4.623B yen) across the three-day. It is the global box office leader this weekend and Japan’s biggest launch in industry history.Demon Slayer also set a new IMAX record, opening 18% bigger in the format than previous champ Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker, to become the top IMAX Japan opener ever with $2.27M (238M yen) from 38 screens. Grosses increased incrementally over the weekend for IMAX.
It's Official: China Overtakes North America as World's Biggest Box Office in 2020
Movie ticket sales in China for 2020 climbed to $1.988 billion on Sunday, surpassing North America's total of $1.937 billion, according to data from Artisan Gateway. The gap is expected to widen considerably by year's end. Analysts have long predicted that the world's most populous country would one day top the global charts. But the results still represent a historic sea change: North America has been the global box office's center of gravity since the dawn of the motion picture business.It only took a pandemic to accelerate the transition. Thanks to China's effective containment of COVID-19, the country’s tens of thousands of theaters are operating at 75 percent of usual seating capacity, while filmgoers are demonstrating little hesitation about returning to the multiplex.