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Two Shot: Streaming Vs Theatrical – Can The Moviegoing Experience Still Be Saved?

By Todd McCarthy, Pete Hammond

Theatrical Vs. Streaming -- Deadline's Two

Editors note: Deadline presents the third episode of Two Shot, a video series in which Pete Hammond and Todd McCarthy tackle the artistry of films. Each has reviewed and written about the craft for decades and built a remarkable breadth of knowledge of films past and present. What we hoped for when we asked them to do this was a concise, mature, thoughtful conversation comparable to what we saw when Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel were alive.

This week, Hammond and McCarthy get into a heavy topic these days in terms of the way we have viewed movies in the past, present and inevitably the futureIt is a hot conversation being had in the industry weighing the pros and cons of traditional theatrical exhibition vs the ever-changing business of streaming new movies, sometimes skipping theaters altogether even for films with very big stars who are being lured with wads of cash from the world of streamers.

What will prevail? Is exhibition dead, or will Marvel and Spider-Man save it? How do we feel about movies we see on a large theater screen versus our TV sets (or worse, on a laptop or phone), and most importantly how does that affect our reviews of the films and our experience in watching them?

Check out the conversation in the video above.

Hammond has been Deadline’s Awards Columnist for the past decade, covering what is seemingly now the year-round Oscar and Emmy seasons. He is also Deadline’s Chief Film Critic, having previously reviewed films for MovieLine, Boxoffice magazine, Backstage, Hollywood.com and Maxim, as well as Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide for which he was a contributing editor. In addition to writing, Pete is also host of the KCET Cinema Series and the weekly KCET television series “Must See Movies.”

McCarthy is a veteran trade publication film critic, columnist and reporter who has also written several acclaimed books and documentary films. He served two stints on the staffs of Variety and The Hollywood Reporter and extensively covered film festivals internationally for both publications. His film Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography won the best documentary prizes from the New York Film Critics and National Society of Film Critics associations, and he won an Emmy for writing the documentary Preston Sturges: The Rise and Fall of an American Dreamer. He also directed the documentaries Man of Cinema: Pierre Rissient and Forever Hollywood.

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