Christopher Nolan has been making movies with Warner Bros. for nearly two decades, but now it looks like their relationship has soured.
As we told you earlier this month, Warner Bros. revealed a new release plan for the upcoming 2021 movie season. They plan to release all their upcoming blockbusters on HBO Max at the same time they enter theaters.
They claimed it was because they knew 2021 would still be a turbulent year and they wanted to get ahead of the curve. But others say it was more of a protective move.
Surprisingly to some in the industry, sources say the idea was the brainchild of Warner Bros. COO Carolyn Blackwood who, looking at a relatively weak 2021 slate, saw an opportunity to avoid the humiliation of potentially bad grosses while currying favor with streamer-obsessed higher-ups.
Well, Nolan talked to The Hollywood Reporter about this move by Warner Bros., and it’s safe to say he was not happy.
Some of our industry’s biggest filmmakers and most important movie stars went to bed the night before thinking they were working for the greatest movie studio and woke up to find out they were working for the worst streaming service.
Warner Bros. had an incredible machine for getting a filmmaker’s work out everywhere, both in theaters and in the home, and they are dismantling it as we speak. They don’t even understand what they’re losing. Their decision makes no economic sense, and even the most casual Wall Street investor can see the difference between disruption and dysfunction.
Ouch. Now we all know Nolan has a pretty strong theater fetish. I mean, I do as well. I love going to the movies, but Nolan is like…IT DOESN’T COUNT UNLESS IT’S INSIDE A THEATER!
This is kinda similar to the political world right now. You have extremes on both sides. You have people like Nolan, and then you have people who seem to believe theaters are dead and we should just forget about them.
There is room in the middle, and honestly, I’m not thrilled with Warner Bros. decision either. I think it’s a big hit to theaters when they can’t afford to take any other hits.
So, hey, I guess I’m all for this rant by Nolan. But at the same time, you can’t just stick your fingers inside your ears and pretend everything is going to be back to normal in a few months.
Things may not be “normal” until August, so studios have to make a plan. You can’t just keep pushing movies back. I don’t know what the solution is.