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Did Warner Brothers just murder the cinema industry? (news)

December 5, 2020 | By | 1 Reply More

Warner Brothers has just announced that all its major movies such as Dune et cetera will be streaming on day one release on Warner’s HBO Max service, as well as filtering into whatever cinemas – or theatres if you’re in the USA- are left standing after a year of being closed for the pandemic.

While this can be seen as a perhaps necessary survival mechanism, given it is not yet known how many cinemagoers will be left among a rather jittery public even after a successful vaccination program, this has got all the other major studios such as Disney scrambling over whether they should follow in this course, or hold firm by sticking with the traditional cinema model?

Did Warner Brothers just murder the cinema industry? (news)

That’s the cinema market being sucked under the dunes, my lord.

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Category: Scifi

About the Author ()

Colonel Frog is a long time science fiction and fantasy fan. He loves reading novels in the field, and he also enjoys watching movies (as well as reading lots of other genre books).

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  1. DMcCunney says:

    Did DisneyCo just kill cinemas? Unlikely. The cinema industry was already deathly ill because of COVID-19. Theaters were all shuttered for the duration. Some have closed shop entirely. Others are declaring bankruptcy and looking for additional financing to stay afloat until cinema doors can reopen again.

    (And in a bemusing move, I noted that major US brick and mortar retail Walmart was reviving the drive in movie, setting up screens and equipping parking lots in some of their outlets so patrons could attend the movies while practicing social distancing.)

    The underlying factor I think would have bit anyway is that the channels by which content is *delivered* are changing. Previously, studios would release films to cinemas. Then DVDs would be released so viewers could have copies they could watch at home. Later, films would go to TV for rebroadcast.

    The spread of cable TV was a disruptive influence, as traditional over the air broadcast TV in many places got replaced by cable channels. (I live in New York City. Where I am, broadcast TV is a lost cause. Too many big buildings making hash of reception because line-of-site to transmitters doesn’t exist. You have cable or abjure TV.)

    As broadband became more pervasive, streaming took over. Everybody is scrambling for a piece of that action. Disney+ is just one of the big players. There is an enormous appetite for content from all the streaming players. The financial markets look askance at what Netflix is spending for original content, and suggesting they will have to add advertising to pay for it all. Netflix has thus far refused.

    DisneyCo is both a content producer and a content *provider*. They expect to make money on the releases from all of th8 subscribers who will pay for their stream to get access to that content.

    I don’t see cinemas going away entirely. There are some new releases best viewed on a *big* screen with surround sound sound, in company of an audience. There will still be a market for IMAX releases. I *do* expect there to be far less cinemas than there used to be, and suspect the ones remaining will be in places where good broadband it not pervasive, and streaming services just aren’t an option for folks who live there.

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