Warner Bros has outlined its plans for the online component of its Wonder Woman 1984 release in the UK. The film entered cinemas in the country on Wednesday (December 16) but only roughly a quarter of venues are open due to lockdown restrictions, including none in London.
The studio has now confirmed the film will receive its PVOD release from January 13 after a four-week theatrical run, and will continue to be available for cinemas to program after that date. There’s no HBO Max in the UK so instead WB will be putting the film out through a number of digital retailers, though a representative declined to specify precisely which ones.
The usual suspects would be the likes of Amazon Prime Video, Sky Store, Apple TV, Google Play, YouTube, Virgin Movies, Rakuten TV, BT TV, Microsoft, PlayStation Store, Chili and TalkTalk TV (not an official list). The studio also did not confirm the price point but did say it would be a 48-hour rental.
Deadline sources indicate WB has reached an agreement with UK multiplex chains including Vue and Odeon to shorten the window from the traditionally strict 16 weeks to just four on this title due to the current extraordinary circumstances. I have been told the fact the studio decided to release the pic theatrically at all was appreciated by exhibs after such a drought of high-profile content. The move contrasts with Disney’s Mulan decision, for example, with that film skipping cinemas entirely to debut online, though crucial to Disney’s move was the availability of Disney+ in the UK.
In the U.S., the movie is going day-and-date in cinemas and on HBO Max from December 25, at no extra cost to subscribers. The studio has said its entire 2021 slate will also follow this model. The UK and a number of other key international territories are expected to receive HBO Max in the latter half of 2021.
Variety first reported the news of the four-week window.