With ‘Free Guy’ and ‘Jungle Cruise,’ Disney Is Winning Both Sides of the Debate Over Hybrid Film Releases

·1-min read
With ‘Free Guy’ and ‘Jungle Cruise,’ Disney Is Winning Both Sides of the Debate Over Hybrid Film Releases

20th Century Studios’ “Free Guy” was the toast of CinemaCon last week, praised by theater owners as an argument against the day-and-date release strategies tested by Disney, the film’s distributor, which released the Ryan Reynolds action comedy exclusively in theaters. But the surprise box office legs of “Jungle Cruise,” one of those films available as a premium Disney+ title, shows that Disney is winning on both sides of the theatrical exclusivity debate. Though the numbers have been watered down by the still-rebuilding nature of the domestic box office, “Free Guy” has performed like a hit from a bygone era: an original comedy that has used star power and strong word of mouth to endure on the charts. From its $28.3 million domestic opening, director Shawn Levy’s film saw a modest second-weekend drop of 34.8% and a third-weekend drop of just 26.7%, giving it a running domestic total of $79.3 million so far. The success of “Free Guy” as the first film released exclusively in theaters by Disney in over a year was hailed by the leaders of the National Association of Theater Owners, as well as by rival Sony Pictures chairman Tom Rothman, who cited two reasons for its success:...

Read original story With ‘Free Guy’ and ‘Jungle Cruise,’ Disney Is Winning Both Sides of the Debate Over Hybrid Film Releases At TheWrap

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