While flipping through my streaming services searching for something to watch, this advertisement caught my eye:
“Wait. Wasn’t this movie just released in theaters a few weeks ago?” After a quick search, I confirmed, that yes, Invisible Man was released in theaters on Friday, February 28, 2020. With the entire world being quarantined due to the COVID-19 pandemic, movie studios are scrambling to realize their profits since no one can go out to the movies. To that end, the studios are releasing their early 2020 releases for streaming rental or purchase
Along with The Invisible Man, the following 2020 releases are available as of March 20, 2020:
Onward (digital purchase. Available on Disney+ early April)
Human Capital is an interesting case. This film will have a ‘limited theatrical release’ on March 20th and will be available for streaming rental the same day.
In the Coming weeks the following films become available:
Bloodshot March 24
The Gentlemen March 24
The Way Back March 24
I Still Believe March 27
Sonic the Hedgehog March 31 (digital purchase)
The films are available on all the streaming platforms as well as some cable network’s video on demand. The average rental/purchase price is $19.99/movie. When compared to cost of going to the movie theater the price is reasonable for a family movie night.
As of the writing of this article, most major releases, Black Widow, Mulan, Fast & Furious 9 and the latest James Bond film, No Time to Die have had their release dates pushed backed. However, I wonder if social-distancing measures continue further into the Spring, will studios start looking to streaming services to release their smaller films.
If it does, it would serve Hollywood right. After all the negative commentary from the executives it’s interesting to see how quickly they are turning to streaming services. I wonder if any of them have approached Netflix directly. Netflix would pay upfront, compared to the the studios having to wait for the audience to purchase the rental.
As this article was being prepared for posting it was announced that The Lovebirds, the Kumail Nanjiani and Issa Rae action comedy which previously had its theatrical release pulled, will now skip the theaters and premier Netflix. There is no release date as of this post but it could be as early as April 3, 2020.
I guess we will see what the future holds. For now, get your rental, pop some popcorn and enjoy.