Universal Studios is receiving backlash from two theatre chains after announcing multiple films straight to Video-on-Demand. Those companies include Regal Cinemas and AMC Theatres, which announced that they wouldn’t showcase any movies slated for a theatrical release that’d already been projected onto VOD.
March 2020 marked the date when Universal Studios decided that four films that were slated for summer release would be implemented onto VOD services like Google Play and Apple Movies. It enabled Universal to obtain fast profits during a period where all studios are losing millions per day. Studios like Disney, MGM, and Columbia Pictures have refused to implement similar strategies. They’ve instead rescheduled their releases to adhere with contractual obligations. Universal deemed these contractual obligations unnecessary and unavoidable, prompting the backlash from operators like AMC Theatres & Regal Cinemas.
Universal Studios hasn’t provided public apologies to either of these corporations, with inside sources indicating that a furious battle of lawyers and courts could ensue. Insiders revealed that executives with Universal Studios wouldn’t accept a banning of their films, prompting lawsuits that would more than likely immediately be dismissed.
Universal broke these contractual obligations initially, with executives upset that they’re being punished for their actions. It should be noted that after AMC Theatres & Regal Cinemas made this announcement, the Universal Studios CEO public remarked that this release model would be employed in the future. Instead of standing beside the film industry that’s growth Universal Studios, Jeff Shell has turned his back on this marketplace.
Regal Founder Provides Insight
The CEO & Founder of Regal Cinemas provided public insight on this matter. It was explained that Universal Studios broke multiple understanding with Regal Cinemas, choosing to inappropriately react to the coronavirus pandemic and disturb a prolonged good faith business relationship. The lack of transparency in their decision has ruined this partnership, which is why Regal Cinemas will follow AMC Theatres and not show any Universal Studios films moving forward. This is the fallout for failing to respect your industry, Jeff.
It’ll be interesting to see how Universal Studios reacts to the remarks from Regal Cinemas. Words can always be used towards benefiting Jeff Shell, A Snake in Hollywood, with his lawsuit.