Tenet projecting low box-office opening
Warner Bros. may be sticking to their guns with the July release date of Christopher Nolan’s highly-anticipated mystery blockbuster Tenet, but new reports are showing that should theaters be open in time that the studio is projecting a low box office opening. (Via IndieWire)
In an interview with Variety, National Association of Theatre Owners’ CEO John Fithian revealed that plans are in place to open major chains AMC and Cinemark back up by mid-July just in time for the openings of Tenet and Disney’s Mulan, with the former slated for July 17 while the latter is planning a July 24 date, including planning new guidelines to space out showtimes and feature multiple theaters with the same movies as they will be the only two new films in circulation.
“We’ve put together a task force of our members, as well as experts on health and safety and supply chains,” Fithian said. “We’re planning for how we open up our seating so we can adhere to strict social distancing guidelines. We’re encouraging companies to lean in on reserved ticketing and to train their staff to prevent congestion in the lobbies. Members are staggering showtimes so everyone isn’t arriving at the multiplex at the same time. We are considering innovative ways to sell concessions in order to reduce human contact. And we’re making sure that employees stay home if they feel sick.”
Despite much anticipation for both films, Fithian noted that they are not expecting either tentpole project to have a massive opening, but hopes that with strong word-of-mouth for both could help yield strong box office returns for each.
“Our members are motivated to make sure that these films do as well as possible,” Fithian said. “We feel like Disney and Warner are demonstrating their belief in the theatrical model by doing this, so we’re going to go the extra mile. I think that traditional windowing will make sense for these movies. They will play a lot longer in theaters than they would have a year ago. They won’t open to the kind of numbers they would have a year ago, but there’s going to be tremendous word-of-mouth. People are going to love ‘Tenet’ and share that on social media.”
Tenet will be an international espionage thriller filmed across seven countries. John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman) stars, with a supporting cast that includes Robert Pattinson (Good Time), Elizabeth Debicki (Widows), Dimple Kapadia (Fugly), Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Avengers: Age of Ultron), Michael Caine (The Dark Knight Rises) and Kenneth Branagh (Dunkirk).
The film, which is written by Nolan and will utilize a mixture of IMAX and 70mm film, which is something he’s become famous for.
The director first made an impact in 2001 with his indie film Memento. His next film, Insomnia, was also a modest hit. but it wasn’t until Batman Begins hit theaters in 2005 that Nolan became a box office force in his own right. The Prestige was Nolan’s last movie to gross under $200 million worldwide. His other films include The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Inception, Interstellar, and Dunkirk.
Nolan is producing Tenet along with his partner Emma Thomas and is currently slated for a July 17 release.