`Black Widow’ Garners $60M From Streaming In Premiere Weekend
Disney announced Sunday that its new Marvel feature film Black Widow took in an estimated total of more than $215 million globally over its debut weekend, including $80 million from the domestic U.S. box office, $78 million from international box offices and more than $60 million as a Disney+ Premier Access feature.
The title was the studio’s first premium streaming movie debut on Disney+, as it appeared simultaneously in theaters and through Disney+ as a Disney+ Premier Access offering. The streaming debut was the next step in a controversial experimental theatrical window release strategy, which lets the studio keep most of the film’s distribution revenue cut from the streaming pot.
The distribution direction has evolved out of the Covid-19 climate, in which theaters were forced to close and studios began experimenting with new feature debuts online at a premium price.
The release of Black Widow has angered some exhibitors, who have boycotted the release, due to the disruption it potentially introduces to traditional release windows for major Disney theatrical features.
Disney+ Premier Access, which launched 10 months ago, is now available in almost 50 countries through supporting streaming devices and platforms.
Disney’s Premier Access allows Disney+ subscribers to pay $29..99 to watch a film at the same time it is available in theaters. Reportedly, it has had mixed results so far for other film premieres including Mulan, Cruella and Raya and the Last Dragon.
The $60 million streaming take means that approximately 2 million Disney+ Premier Access takers ponied up the $29.99 fee to watch the film on Disney+ over its debut weekend.
“Black Widow is the largest domestic box office opening since the COVID-19 pandemic began and the largest domestic opening weekend since Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker in December 2019.
“The combined theatrical and Disney+ Premier Access opening makes Black Widow the only film to surpass $100M in domestic consumer spend on opening weekend since the start of the pandemic.
“It is the highest domestic opening weekend for an Marvel Cinematic Universe origin story after Black Panther and Captain Marvel.“
“Black Widow’s strong performance this weekend affirms our flexible distribution strategy of making franchise films available in theaters for a true cinematic experience and, as COVID concerns continue globally, providing choice to consumers who prefer to watch at home on Disney+,” said Kareem Daniel, Chairman, Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution.
“Black Widow’s strong performance this weekend affirms our flexible distribution strategy of making franchise films available in theaters for a true cinematic experience and, as COVID concerns continue globally, providing choice to consumers who prefer to watch at home on Disney+,” stated Kareem Daniel, Chairman, Disney Media and Entertainment Distribution.
Disney’s Jungle Cruise will be the next major theatrical film release to debut as a Premier Access title.
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By Greg Tarr
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