Cineworld Openly Skeptical Of Universal-AMC's On-Demand Movie Deal

As a new path for theatrical releases opens up, other doors may shut in protest.

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As the movie industry as a whole continues to navigate what a path to re-opening looks like in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Cineworld, the world's second largest cinema chain has issued a response to AMC Theaters and Universal reaching a compromise between theatrical and home digital releases of new movies: "We do not see any business sense in this model."

That quote comes from a longer series of statements Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidinger gave to Deadline, further elaborating that: "While we don’t know the full details and we are always analyzing any move in the industry, we will analyze it. People need to be aware that the first big movie from Universal is coming only in six months so there is no pressure here… But we clearly see this as a wrong move at the wrong time. Clearly we are not changing our policy with regards to showing only movies that are respecting the theatrical window."

It should be noted that the compromise between AMC Theaters and Universal has not yet borne out any specific details of what their deal entails, and for how long--all that's known as of this writing is that the movie-theater chains are working together. It's still unknown how other theaters and movie studios could fit into this developing scenario in the future.

Back in April, Greidinger made his skepticism clear of these types of deals that would circumnavigate theatrical releases, offering this on a previous spat between AMC and Universal over theatrical-premium video on demand releases: "We make it clear again that we will not be showing movies that fail to respect the windows." So it's unsurprising he hasn't changed his tune since then.

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