The decision-makers at Disney must have patted their backs when they decided to release ‘Black Widow’ on Disney+ and the theatres on the same day. But the decision seems to have backfired due to a variety of reasons. The foolishness has made the theatre owners miffed at them.
In the past few years, we have seen a growing trend of people reluctant on attending the cinema halls to watch films. Instead they are opting to sit in their drawing rooms, gorging on films on OTT. And then, Hollywood is money-making machinery and for them, profits mean everything. But it has a dreaded side effect. The side effects of the films biting dust during their theatrical releases. Disney+ made the same blunder recently when they decided to release their new film ‘Black Widow’ on their OTT platform on the same day as the film’s theatrical release. This affected the film’s box office success, which still happens to be the scale to measure a film’s success or failure. The distributors aren’t very happy as the film experienced a major slowdown in its second week.
- ‘Black Widow’ box office decline
- ‘Black Widow’ witnesses worst drop
While this new fad of releasing new films on the OTTs has been a repercussion of closing down of the theatres due to the pandemic, the trend had lingered on even after the theatres opened. Many producers got great deals with the OTTs while there were some that did not agree with this new ‘format’ of experiencing cinema. Take Christopher Nolan for example, the dude waited months for the release of ‘Tenet’ and did not succumb to the pressure of selling the film off to an OTT. But the superhero films take a different route. WB did that with ‘Zack Snyder’s Justice League’ and ‘Wonder Woman 1984’ and recently, Marvel has done it with ‘Black Widow’.
Black Widow box office decline
Now, Marvel cinematic universe is not known to face slowdowns on the box office returns for at least 4 weeks after their films’ release. Their films have consistently made at least a billion on the box office. But what happened to the first MCU film released in two years? Disney+ shared the first weekend’s earnings of about $60 million but in the second week, the collection fell by a whopping 67%. Naturally, if you decide to bring the film to people’s drawing rooms, box office reports of the films will suffer. National Association of Theatre Owners also thought so and blasted Disney+ on their poor decision to release the film on their OTT on the same day. The pandemic has been very hard on film theatres as many of them were compelled to shut down their business. Hence, as the country is reopening slowly, they needed a respite with a major release. But it looks like their plan for revival was destroyed by the decision of releasing the film on Disney+.
Theatre owners also questioned why Disney was not willing to share the second week’s earning of the film. They hinted at the film performing poorly on the OTT as well. And what’s more shocking is the fact that it’s the first MCU film since 2019’s ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home‘. And not only that, but the critics are also liking the film. The film has an 81% fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes. And now, it has become a mystery why the film’s performance on the box office and the OTT declined. So far, the film has made about $131 million at the domestic box office. While it is still a respectable amount, it’s pretty low from an MCU film standpoint.
‘Black Widow’ witnesses worst drop
One other cause of concern from the OTT releases is the piracy issue. It’s easy to pirate a film through the OTTs and not as easy from the theatres. So many must have downloaded and watched the film already, hence, no need to pay $30 for Disney+ or making the effort of walking into a theatre to watch another MCU film. The filmmakers need to get their priorities in place before the audience actually forgets what it feels like to watch a film in theatres.
Tell us in the comments if you also think that OTTs are ruining the experience of watching films on the big screen. Also tells us your reviews of ‘Black Widow’, if you have watched it already.