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In Bid to Boost Peacock, Universal Sends 3 Movies Directly for Streaming

“What you want to see with these films is that they are, on the whole, appealing, but also aimed at the young, diverse audience that represents the streaming audience today, the generation of consumers who choose streaming as their primary source of entertainment, “she says. said Campbell in an interview.

Despite being behind some of its streaming competitors, Peacock has experienced success this year. February was a highlight where viewers could watch the 2022 Winter Olympics, the Super Bowl, the simultaneous release of the Jennifer Lopez starring film “Marry Me” in theaters and at the service and debut of “Bel-Air.” a dramatic re-enactment of the 1990s hit television series “The Prince of Bel-Air,” starring Will Smith. (Season two is under development.)

“Retention on our service after posting all this special content for such a concentrated period was far beyond our expectation,” Brian Roberts, CEO of Comcast, said in a earnings call last week. “We’ve seen a 25 percent increase in hours of commitment year over year.”

As the pandemic changed the theater industry, Universal Pictures experimented with a variety of distribution methods for its films. There it was purely theatrical like “Fast 9: The Fast Saga,” which grossed $ 173 million when it was released last summer when coronavirus cases were lower. And there was “Sing 2,” which earned over $ 160 million in the domestic market after being released in December, before going to premium video-on-demand just 17 days after its debut in theaters. The company has also experimented with simultaneous release, debuting “Halloween Kills” and the sequel to “Boss Baby” in theaters and on Peacock during the height of the pandemic. The company will do it again in two weeks with the remake of the Stephen King horror film “Firestarter”.

“There is no one size fits all,” Ms. Langley. “It’s really about looking at the individual films on the one hand and then also at our growth engine Peacock, and doing what is best at a given moment, depending on what is happening in the market. I hope this stabilizes over time as the theatrical landscape stabilizes. But until then, we have this opportunity. “

Like all other study leaders, Ms. Langley involved in the complicated calculation of deciding which movies fit where in a world where the cinema box office has fallen 45 percent from what it was in 2019. It is “a ticket office that is in decline,” Ms. Langley, with theater hallways expected to still be down by at least 15 percent from its pre-pandemic level by 2023.

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