This day and age is seeing the rise of digital streaming services and platforms as a top purveyor of quality media content; and what better way to establish media quality than to have their programs winning media awards? Already, Netflix has scored plenty of awards for their original exclusive streaming series, but they want to go further by having their original streaming films stand for awards too. This is somewhat difficult considering award-giving bodies like the Academy Awards rule that potential nominee movies must be shown in theaters first. Traditional cinema chains are also concerned that streaming films will undercut their business. To this, Netflix is offering a reasonable mediation.
The Verge tells us that Netflix has inked an agreement with certain major cinema chains that will allow them to carry some of their exclusive films on a limited screening period before they actually debut on the streaming platform. No less than 10 Netflix exclusive films that are scheduled to be added to the streaming giant’s online library will first be given cinematic release windows for several days. This is already a marked increase from the limited release of four exclusive films in theaters done by Netflix back in 2018.
Netflix has quite the selection of original movies that they will allow to be seen theatrically before becoming locked into their streaming service. They include “The Laundromat” by Steven Soderbergh, originally slated to premiere for streaming on October 18 but will premiere in cinemas on September 7. Next in “Marriage Story” by Noah Baumbach, getting a one-month cinema run staring November 6 before starting streaming on the same day in December. Most notable perhaps is Martin Scorsese’s Netflix production “The Irishman,” which stars Robert De Niro and Al Pacino of “The Godfather Part II” fame. It is getting a November 1 cinema premiere and a Netflix launch on November 27.
The fact that Netflix is offering more of its original exclusive films for actual cinematic screening indicates that they are taking their efforts to get an Oscar nomination to the next level. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences mandates that a movie must run at least seven days in a county theater in Los Angeles as a requirement to be considered for nomination. They are dead set on getting the movie and film accolades for their streaming content.
Aside from “The Laundromat,” “Marriage Story” and “The Irishman,” other Netflix exclusives getting theater screenings before streaming are: “Dolemite is My Name,” “The King,” “Earthquake Bird,” “Klaus,” “I Lost My Baby,” “Atlantics,” and “The Two Popes.” All have October-November cinema premieres and November-December streaming debuts.
Image from Wall Street Journal