AMC and Universal Strike Once in a Life Time Deal

AMC

Universal Pictures and AMC Theaters have put aside their long time business feud and signed a billion-dollar agreement. The partnership allows both studios to release films on VOD after 17 days of theatrical releases.

The implications of this deal mean that in the future Universal will be able to keep films in the theaters for longer than 17 days. For instance, Jurassic Park and Fast and the Furious can be kept in theaters for longer than it needs to be.

Historically, movie theaters had to allow a run time of 90 days before marketing the film to DVD and home access. The financial terms of the agreement were not shared with the public. However, AMC’s CEO Adam Aron stated that the company will “share these new revenue streams.”

AMC will get a cut of any money made from the digital releases as a result of the agreement but Universal can only put videos on premium on-Demand. Meaning any of the films released will go no lower than roughly 20 dollars until 3 months after debuting in cinemas. Which after that will be sold in three to six dollar ranges.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic movie theaters have settled for simply delaying theatrical releases and went to VOD and online streaming only for certain films, whereas Universal can release theatrical hit movies on VOD as well as small mid-budget fare movies.

In light of the agreement Universal Filmed Entertainment Group chairman, Donna Langley, says in a statement that “The partnership we’ve forged with AMC is driven by our collective desire to ensure a thriving future for the film distribution ecosystem and to meet consumer demand with flexibility and optionality.”

A few months ago AMC and Universal were involved in a feud over Universal’s decision to skip its theatrical release and go straight to VOD with the movie “Trolls World Tour.” After that AMC initially said that they would no longer show Universal Picture Releases when theaters reopen. And as it turns out Universal made more revenue from releasing on VOD than if the movie went to the box office due to 80 percent of the profits going straight to Universal by using VOD.

While this was happening AMC was filling for bankruptcy due to the theater’s prolonged closure and lack of produced movies. The deal now overturns AMC’s previous decision and is supposed to help AMC stay afloat throughout the end of the year.

Theaters across the country due to the pandemic and social distancing rules. With movies being delayed again and again and instead of being premiered in international theaters where COVID rates are lower, movie distributors have to find a new way to distribute movies.

Written by Brielle R. Buford

Sources:

IGN: Universal and AMC Agree to Shorten Theatrical Window to 17 Days

yahoo!: Universal, AMC Theatres Forge Historic Deal Allowing Theatrical Releases to Debut on Premium VOD Early

Entertainment Weekly: AMC Theatres and Universal strike historic deal on theatrical releases and VOD

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Jamie’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

Leave a Reply