Thursday, May 26, 2022

Netflix Sets Stage for $90 Million Purchase of New Will Smith Movie

Will-Smith*Netflix is not playing when it comes to acquiring blockbuster movies.

Business Insider reports the movie and television-streaming network is gearing up to pay more than $90 million for “Bright,” a new movie starring Will Smith that will begin shooting in the fall. David Ayer will direct the cop thriller, which contains “fantastical elements.”

According to Deadline, Netflix will spend about $45 million to shoot “Bright” and $45 million for talent as well as $3 million for the movie’s script, which was written by Max Landis.

Netflix’s purchase of “Bright” comes after the network reportedly emerged victorious over multiple bidders in a two-week bidding war. Among the bidders were Warner Brothers and MGM, who both would have provided a wide theatrical release for the film. The move represents Netflix’s latest efforts to purchase blockbuster films, as evidenced by the $60 million it paid for Brad Pitt’s “War Machine,” which has not yet been released.

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While getting “Bright” is a major accomplishment, Business Insider points out that Netflix’s commitment to “day-and-date releases” will likely limit how many movie theaters will show the film. “Day-and-date releases” noted for enabling movies to be available for streaming on Netflix the same day they arrive in theaters.

Despite its appeal, the “day-and-date” release policy has been met with resistance from major theater chains like Regal, which have publicly denounced it.

In addition, previous films from Netflix have experienced a very limited theatrical release. FBR Capital Markets analyst Barton Crockett, Netflix’s challenge with finding a successful alliance with theater giants will be an uphill battle.

“It’s going to be very, very difficult for Netflix to get the major theater chains to carry its movies,” Crockett recently told The Los Angeles Times.




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