Another major movie theater chain has struck a deal with Universal Pictures to allow for shorter exclusive theatrical windows. Canada’s Cineplex has agreed on a multiyear “dynamic window” agreement, the film exhibitor and Uiversal Filmed Entertainment Group said Friday.
Like the deal struck with Cinemark earlier this week and AMC Theaters before that, Universal and Focus Features films will have at least three weeks of theatrical exclusivity before hitting premium video on demand services. Titles that have an opening weekend of $50 million or more in North American theaters will be guaranteed at least five weeks in theaters.
The $50 million mark is just theoretical at this point, however. In normal times, a $50 million launch is not uncommon for Universal’s biggest franchises like “Fast & Furious” and “Jurassic World.” But no films have done that kind of business during the pandemic.
Theater owners have long adhered to a strict 90-day theatrical exclusivity window, but the devastating effects of the pandemic on the movie business have forced many to adapt and compromise.