Wonder Woman 1984 really took a beating when it opened late last year, largely due to constant delays because of the coronavirus, and uncertainty about Warner Bros. release plan. Director Patty Jenkins fought hard for a very long time to secure an exclusively theatrical release, but ultimately it arrived simultaneously on HBO Max. This being the first major test case for that strategy, the results weren’t good with just $166M worldwide, and Jenkins still isn’t happy about it.
Appearing at CinemaCon, Jenkins expressed her frustration (via Deadline) and made it clear that she won’t be doing any day-and-date released in the future, not for a major studio and not for a streamer like Netflix.
Jenkins called it “It was the best choice in a bunch of bad choices at the moment” and a “heartbreaking experience.”
“It was detrimental to the movie. I knew that could have happened…I don’t think it plays the same on streaming, ever. I’m not a fan of day-and-date and I hope to avoid it forever. I make movies for the big-screen experience.”
When pressed about possibly making a movie for Netflix, with a shortened theatrical window before streaming, Jenkins responded
“I won’t make one. I like working with Netflix for television, I wouldn’t make a movie there or any streaming service with those terms. It’s hard to market a movie when it has a limited run.”
The box office on Wonder Woman 1984 was shockingly low, and I can understand why Jenkins is still upset. You can bet she’s worked out something with Disney on her upcoming Star Wars movie, Rogue Squadron, for it to be a theatrical exclusive. And if there’s going to be a reunion with Gal Gadot for Wonder Woman 3, a similar deal will have to be struck.