WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar talked about his views on the current movie release strategy during the AT&T quarterly call and said, “The motion picture format absolutely matters.” Due to the pandemic, Warner Bros. decided to have day-and-date HBO Max and theatrical releases for its entire 2021 slate.
This has worked well for the streaming service as new Warner Bros. titles such as Wonder Woman 1984, Godzilla Vs. Kong, Mortal Kombat, In the Heights, and Judas and the Black Messiah have helped bring more viewers to HBO Max.
Kilar revealed that Warner Bros. will be producing ten motion pictures for HBO Max while talking about how this new format could shape ‘a more permanent strategy.’ Kilar highlighted some crucial points,
Godzilla vs. Kong, which we released this quarter, it’s done over $463 million in revenue at the theaters. And so clearly, motion pictures matter and will continue to matter when it comes to theatrical exhibition.
They also matter at home. And absolutely, in terms of the response that we’ve gotten not just from that title, but from all of our day-and-date titles. We feel very good about the response that consumers have given it in the home.Jason Kilar
Talking about future releases, Kilar added that things weren’t ‘going back to the way the world was in 2015 or ’16 or ’17, where windows were quite lengthy between theatrical and home exhibition.’ He also mentioned that this would mean a shorter 45 days window for a portion of the titles.
The quarterly earnings show that the entertainment group is doing well, with revenue rising 31% at $8.8 billion. The WarnerMedia owned streaming service added 2.8 million subscribers along with the original HBO network this quarter, making it 47 million subscribers in total in the U.S.
WarnerMedia EVP and GM of Direct-to-Consumer Andy Forssell spoke to Deadline about the importance of having feature films on HBO Max for attracting a larger viewership for its shows as well.
We are learning more and more about the interplay of feature films and episodic programming. And we’re getting better about marrying up and handing off from one to the other. An early example of how the two verticals can combine to benefit the whole came when Wonder Woman 1984 premiered in December. Many new viewers who watched the film then checked out Max Original series The Flight Attendant.Andy Forssell
HBO Max recently rolled out a new sampling strategy and introduced their new Snap Mini free episodes feature on Snapchat. Besides that, Chromecast with Google TV also launched its new bundle offer with 3 months of HBO Max ad-free plan at the cost of $65. With this latest development, we know HBO Max is definitely eyeing the top streaming spots along side Netflix and Disney.
About HBO Max
HBO Max is an American subscription video-on-demand streaming service owned by AT&T via the WarnerMedia Direct subsidiary of WarnerMedia and was launched on May 27, 2020, in the United States.
While built around content from namesake premium television service HBO, it principally serves as a content hub for WarnerMedia’s various film and television properties, offering a range of original programming and library content from the company as well as additional content licensed through third-party distributors.