If you were hoping to see the new Star Wars: The Last Jedi movie in theatres you may have a hard time. A few theatres are refusing to show the movie due to Disney’s stringent rules regarding its release. Several theatre owners have spoken out about the “secret” terms which must be agreed to before screening the film. Some of the more strict rules include:
-Disney will receive 65% of the ticket revenue, the largest ever demanded by a studio.
-The movie must be shown in the theatre’s largest auditorium.
-The movie must run for 4 consecutive weeks on the largest screen.
-Advertising for the movie cannot begin until Disney gives the notice to begin.
Several theatre owners have already stated they will not be showing the movie. They have stated the rules are “ornerus” and “greedy.” Some will not be showing the movie on principle, stating the rules are nothing but greed on the part of Disney. Others will not show the movie due to the simple fact that their theatres cannot withstand the lost revenue. Larger theatres with multiple screens will be able to absorb the lost revenue by showing other movies at the same time. However, smaller theatres with only a couple screens will be hit twice as hard. Not only will they lose revenue due to Disney taking a higher cut of each ticket sold, they will also not be able to show any other new releases during that mandatory four week run. The smaller theatres will not be able to show other movies to balance out the revenue lost.
Any theatres who decide to show Last Jedi, but break any of the rule stand to incur another hit to their bank account. Any theatre found breaking any of the rules will be fined a 5% penalty. That means that Disney’s cut of the ticket price raises up to 70% of the ticket cost.
The movie is slated to be released in December 15, 2017. At this time, it is unclear exactly how many theatres are refusing to show the film, but it does appear the majority are smaller theatres who cannot withstand the lost revenue. Major cities will be largely unaffected. However, if you live in a small town, you may have to make a drive to see the film.
Since Disney bought out the Star Wars franchise in 2012, followed by Marvel and Lucasfilm, they have held a monopoly over the film industry. Is their greed becoming too great? Will the film industry and theatres begin to fight back and stop showing their films? Only time will tell. Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.