Weekend Wrap Up - a look at this week’s Industry Updates

May 10, 2021

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms! I know I owe my mom much more than I could ever put into words. I also know that not everyone is fortunate enough to still have their moms around – my heart goes out to you all. Moms, thank you for all that you do and I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! You are truly irreplaceable.


Playing counter-program to the holiday was Guy Ritchie and Jason Statham’s action flick, Wrath of Manwhich had a solid weekend of $8.1M. The wide-release title was joined by a moderate release title, Sony’s Here Today, which picked up a little less than $1M from 1,200 theaters. Wrath of Man tops the box-office of recent pandemic-era films aimed at older men: Nobody ($6.8M), Unhinged ($4M), Honest Thief ($4.1M) and The Marksman ($3.1M). It also comes fairly close to the $10.6M that Guy Ritchie’s last film, The Gentlemanscored in theaters last year before the pandemic shut things down. The studio president of United Artists Releasing admitted that they “took advantage of the Mother’s Day weekend as soon as Black Widow moved” – and it paid off.


Wrath of Man leads this weekend’s estimated $23M box-office gross. Last week’s champ, Demon Slayer, dropped into second place and continues to stay ahead of Mortal Kombat – picking up another $3.0M versus the latter’s $2.4M.


In other news, Cinemark announced newly signed agreements with the five major studios – Universal, Warner Bros., Disney, Paramount, and Sony – that will provide the movie chain with a “steady stream of theatrical content”. Although the exact terms of Cinemark’s deals have not been disclosed, it has been reported that each one was negotiated separately, with different terms in play. Changes to theatrical windows were not mentioned, but studios have previously announced changes in distribution:


    • Universal: 31 days of exclusivity for films that have opening weekends over $50M, 17 days for those under.
    • Warner Bros.: Starting in 2022, theaters will have 45 days of exclusivity before titles are sent to HBO Max.
    • Disney: With upcoming titles ranging from day-and-date PVOD releases (CruellaBlack Widow), straight to SVOD (Luca), and possible theater exclusives (Shang Chi, Eternals), the studio seems to be deciding on a title-by-title basis.
    • Paramount: 45 to 60 days of exclusivity, determined case by case pre-release.
    • Sony: an exact window has not been officially set, but they did sign a deal with Netflix giving the streamer exclusivity after films play in theaters.


Speaking of Netflix and Cinemark, the two companies will be teaming up this weekend. One week ahead of its May 21 release on Netflix, Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead will play exclusively at Cinemark screens – and other circuits including Marcus, Landmark, Alamo, Harkins, Cinepolis, and iPic. This would be Cinemark’s first wide theatrical releases of a Netflix film, and it will not be the last. In a conference call with investors, Cinemark CEO Mark Zoradi revealed ongoing discussions with Netflix, Apple TV, and others: “We’re not talking about quantity, there’s a half-dozen pictures that are really important to some of the streaming services. There are either big, important Academy movies or bigger, mid-sized commercial films that we would be interested in playing.” 


We are just one week away from the calm before the storm that proceeds the debut of higher-profile films including Cruella and A Quiet Place II (both coming May 28). Analysts anticipate that Memorial Day Weekend will bring enough heat to ignite the summer moviegoing season. Before then, Spiral: From the Book of Saw will give moviegoers one more new title to enjoy this Friday, May 14. There will be no new wide-releases for the May 21 weekend.

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