Thanks to fears about piracy in English-language territories, it’s not just tentpoles like “Mission: Impossible 3” getting day-and-date releases these days.
Already this year, “Date Movie,” “Underworld: Evolution,” “Final Destination 3” and “Big Momma’s House 2” opened concurrently in some or all of the major English-language markets of Australia, New Zealand and the U.K. And pics like “V for Vendetta,” “Scary Movie 4,” Disney toon “The Wild” and Adam Sandler comedy “Click” are going the same route in the next few months.
Sony’s even confident enough of “Click” to open day-and-date in the U.K. on June 23, during the World Cup.
“It makes business sense to beat the pirates,” says BVI veep David Kornblum. He notes sequels are good candidates to go day-and-date, since they don’t require the same kind of fine-tuned foreign marketing campaigns that follow domestic release.
Sony Pictures Releasing Intl. VP Jay Sands points out that the Australian market is particularly attractive for day-and-date for two other reasons: Marketing costs are relatively inexpensive and moviegoing patterns are fairly predictable, particularly on horror, sequels and broad comedies.
“Australia really is the 51st state,” says Sands. “If it opens well in the U.S., it usually also opens well in Australia at about 10% in local currency.” There are no real surprises.”