With no field workplace or streaming numbers, Hollywood has a tough time planning

“The Suicide Squad” should have been a huge hit for Warner Bros. last month. It had superheroes, a marquee director (James Gunn), a huge production budget ($ 185 million), and received great reviews. But instead of delivering a box office Ka-Pow, things really started: Ticket sales amount to 156 million US dollars (about 50:50 split between theaters), compared to 747 million US dollars for the first “Suicide Squad” in 2016.

Of course, the newest one had to fight a pandemic. And it was also made available for free on HBO Max, in lockstep with its theatrical debut. On that platform, it was a relative success – at least according to HBO Max, who touted “The Suicide Squad” as the second most highly regarded film debut of the year of the service.

But it didn’t offer numbers.

Paw Patrol: The Movie (Paramount) was released simultaneously in theaters and on Paramount + late last month. It grossed $ 13 million on the first weekend, enough to finish second behind Free Guy, a holdover. But the actual demand for “Paw Patrol” was masked. Regal Cinemas, the second largest multiplex chain in the United States behind AMC Entertainment, refused to play the animated adventure because of its streaming availability. Paramount + said on Aug. 25 that the film was “rated as one of the service’s most viewed originals”.

But it didn’t offer numbers.

Disney-Marvel, however, brought “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” exclusively to the cinemas on Friday. Disney’s CEO had called the old-fashioned publication an “experiment”. Would the coronavirus keep people at home?

In surveys by the National Research Group, a consultant to the film industry, of American moviegoers at the end of August, around 67 percent of those questioned said that they feel comfortable (“very or fairly”) in a theater. Disney has cited concerns about the coronavirus for making films like “Jungle Cruise,” “Cruella,” and “Black Widow” available simultaneously in homes on Disney + and in theaters (although Hollywood has suspected the real reason – or at least a similar one) is more important – Disney + helped).

The crystal clear result: Audiences flocked to “Shang-Chi,” which, according to Comscore, which compiles box office data, raised $ 83.5 million in 4,300 cinemas in the US and Canada from Friday to Monday. Overseas, the well-reviewed film known as Marvel’s first Asian-run superhero spectacle generated an additional $ 56.2 million. The production of “Shang-Chi” cost around 200 million dollars.

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