Spy Movie News Article – Sept 15 2020: RED NOTICE, FIVE EYES, M:I 7, THE DUKE, TENET, NTTD

Related: Spy Movie News Sept 15 2020: RED NOTICE, FIVE EYES, M:I 7, THE DUKE, TENET, NTTD

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Here's our September 15 2020 edition of Spy Movie News with the latest updates on Mission: Impossible 7, Red Notice, Five Eyes, TENET, The Duke, NO TIME TO DIE, and some Idris Elba and spy industry news. 

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 7

  • Let’s start with some Mission: Impossible 7 news. We know that Tom Cruise has been in England on some rented land practicing stunts for the movie Mission: Impossible 7
  • From a Cinemablend.com article, Christopher Mcquarrie, the director says filming has started up again.  And he and released the photo that shows a huge ramp.  This will be used for a stunt with a motorcycle launching off this ramp which is probably 600 feet in the air. It's something to see if you haven't seen it yet.  
  • According to independent.co.uk, Mission: Impossible 7 filming in Norway.  Tom Cruise rented a £ 500,000 cruise liner. That's about $645,000. And this is for the crew and the stars, to prevent further delays and to protect them from COVID-19. So this is clever.  Expensive but clever. Bravo, Tom Cruise you are Top Gun. 

RED NOTICE

  • The Netflix movie Red Notice has some news.  In March, shooting was postponed because of the COVID-19  pandemic. In August 2020 they announced the shooting would start back up in mid-September. So here we are.  According to cinemablend.com, it looks like they are back on the set.  They are being vigilant about making sure that anyone arriving back on the sets for filming is COVID-19 free through testing and so on. No other details were available, but Ryan Reynolds posted pics of him taking the COVID-19 test and said it was easy.
  • Good to hear Hollywood is being careful.

THE GRAY MAN

  • Speaking of Netflix, they're investing 200 million dollars, according to theverge.com, on a movie based on Mark Greaney’s, “The Gray Man” series of books.  The movie will be about a former CIA agent who was an assassin, also called The Gray Man, starring Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans. And Chris Evans would be the CIA agent who's on the hunt for The Gray Man.
  • Netflix hopes to build a franchise out of this first movie. We don't know much else about the movie other than what was reported, but sounds a little like Bourne doesn't it? Hey, no release date yet. Production should start next year. Check theverge.com for all the details.

Five Eyes

  • From deadline.com we see that German major Leonine has won the rights to the recently announced Jason Statham and Guy Ritchie spy thriller, Five Eyes.  This marks the first major deal to go down during Toronto's virtual market. According to the article, in this spy thriller, Statham will play an MI 6 guns-and-steel agent recruited by the Global Intelligence Alliance,' Five Eyes'.  His mission will be to track and stop the sale of a deadly weapon that threatens to disrupt the world order.  Reluctantly paired with a high tech CIA expert, he sets off on a globe-trotting mission to infiltrate a billionaire arms broker.
  • Principle photography is due to start in October 2020 in Europe. Additional casting is underway. 
  •  In a related article in collider.com, they say that Jason Statham and Guy Ritchie are teaming up again for Five Eyes. They say Statham's character, the MI 6 agent, will be named Orson Fortune, who is paired with CIA agent Sarah Fidel. This is the fifth time Statham and Ritchie are working together.  And the article says, hey, this is an appropriate title then, Five Eyes. Oh wait, there are two of them. Shouldn't the title be Ten Eyes? (groan)

WIFE OF A SPY

  • Yahoo has a review of the Kyoshi Kurosawa movie, Wife of a Spy, which premiered at the Venice International Film Festival. 
  •  The review makes it unclear if the movie is really a spy movie.  But there are bioweapons,  smuggled reels of surveillance footage, and forged letters.
  •  The author appeared to not want to give away the film, which of course, hey, that's a good idea. 
  • This movie is seeking US distribution.

TENET

Here’s an update on TENET from Europe and the US.
  • Hollywoodreporter.com reports that while the domestic box office launch for Warner Brother's TENET has widely been described as tepid, one analyst said he sees it as a good sign. “We actually view the results as encouraging and a positive indicator of demand. Given all of the COVID-19 headwinds.  That's what B Riley, analyst Eric Wold wrote in a Monday report.
  • The analyst echoed Warner Brothers' argument that it was a promising sign that TENET this weekend dropped just 29% from the 9.4 million earned during the September 4th through the 6th weekend. Even though that isn't an apples-to-apples comparison since the film rolled over the long Labor Day weekend and is now playing in 100 more theaters.
  • According to deadline.com, one of the offshoots of the release of tenant has Warner Brothers, who has both TENET and Wonder Woman 1984, pushing Wonder Woman 1984 to a Christmas release.  Part of the speculation is that the original early October release might have competed with what Warner Brothers hopes will be an early October reopening of theaters in New York and Los Angeles. Warner Brothers will release TENET in those cities if they do open up.  They didn't want to have Wonder Woman 1984 compete with it.
  • Also, 30% of the nation's theater space in the US is still closed down due to the pandemic.  If TENET doesn't open in New York in LA, Warner Brothers might not want to open another blockbuster to only 70% of the US market. In addition, the spot opened up once, the movie Top Gun: Maverick had its release pushed to July 2021. 
  • So what does this portend for the November 6th and 20th release in the US of Black Widow and NO TIME TO DIE respectively? Well in terms of NO TIME TO DIE,  in an article on express.co.uk, they're wondering about the release date. In a compelling statement, they suggest that
  • Wonder Woman 1984 has moved from its October 2nd release to Christmas Day.
  • MGM's Candyman has been delayed indefinitely from the same month to 2021
  • The same studio, MGM, has the movie NO TIME TO DIE, which is internationally distributed by Universal Pictures.
So what does this mean? Read their article for more info, but it does make one wonder!  And they point out we should take another look at the most recent movie poster release for NO TIME TO DIE. Anything about the date pop out? Check out their article.

IDRIS ELBA

  • Movieweb.com has an article on an upcoming espionage movie starring Idris Elba.  The movie is untitled, but will release on Apple TV plus.
  • So it isn't James Bond, but Elba will have another spy movie leading role. 
  •  Not much else has been said about the movie other than it's being called a “spy movie with romance” and is set in Africa.
Let's hope it's not a romance movie like director John Woo called Mission: Impossible II. Let's also hope it’s a better movie than Mission: Impossible II.

JAMES BOND, LIFE AFTER NO TIME TO DIE

  • Digitalspy.com has an article quoting Crazy Rich Asians star Henry Golding, saying that the next James Bond movie is an “opportunity for change, be it female, male, BI gay, straight, trans, Asian, Black, Latina.
  • He ducks the question of if he's been approached for the role.

THE DUKE

  • We’ll end with a story about a movie that isn't technically a spy movie.  But the story it tells had a slight influence on the first James Bond movie, Dr. No.  In our podcast on Dr. No, we talked about how EON Productions brought a bit of the real world into the movie.
  • In one scene when James Bond is in Dr. No’s lair, he passes a portrait,  "The Duke of Wellington" by Goya. He stops and takes a quick look.   That portrait in real life had been stolen from the National Gallery in London before the filming of the movie. EON Productions added that touch of reality.
  • At the Venice Film Festival, the movie The Duke, starring Helen Mirren, Matthew Goode, and Jim Broadbent, was shown.  The topic of that movie, the theft of the Duke of Wellington portrait. The movie has an expected UK release in 2021.
So that’s it for this edition of Cracking the Code of Spy Movie News.  Be sure to check out our website, SpyMovieNavigator.com, and our podcasts on your favorite podcast app,  we have a YouTube channel too.  Tell your friends about us. We’ll catch you in the next edition of Spy Movie News.

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Spy Movie News Sept 15 2020: RED NOTICE, FIVE EYES, M:I 7, THE DUKE, TENET, NTTD

Listen to our September 15 2020 edition of Spy Movie News with latest updates on Mission Impossible 7, Red Notice, Five Eyes, Tenet, The Duke, No Time to Die - and some Idris Elba and spy industry news!

Spy Movie News – Tenet, The King’s Man, Black Widow, & Red Notice – 8/11/2020 Update

Related: Spy Movie News – Tenet, The King’s Man, Black Widow, & Red Notice – 8/11/2020 Update

Related: 2020 Spy Movie release schedule – April 3 Update

Related: Spy Movie News Article for Oct 1 2020 – No Time To Die!

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We have recorded this article as a podcast.  If you want to watch it,  click here. This article will update the status of the movies The King’s Man, Tenet, Black Widow, and Red Notice.  We last talked about these movies in this article from April. We'll also look at a couple of industry changes that will likely have an impact on movie going for the foreseeable future.

Tenet

(currently set for and August -September release depending on the location)

So, let’s start with Tenet.   This is the Christopher Nolan movie which is supposed to be the first tent pole movie released in the US during the pandemic.  What happens here will have ramifications for the industry as a whole. The release has been pushed numerous times as the movie industry is trying to figure out how to release a movie safely during the pandemic and in a manner in which consumers will still go to a theater. According to an article by Tom Brueggmann in Indiewire, the current plan for Tenet is a UK release date of August 26, 2020, and in 50 other territories between the 26th and 28th. China’s release date is still unknown, but the movie has been approved there. It will have a US release on September 3rd in select theaters. Currently, 45 states in the US permit indoor theaters to operate with some restrictions/safety precautions.  Cinemark, Regal, and AMC all have opening dates scheduled by the end of August with wide releases starting on August 21st.   Warner Brothers is re-releasing Inception as well.   From what I’ve read, you should probably watch Inception again before seeing Tenet.  So, as Brueggmann’s article states “even if California and New York couldn’t open and a few other areas besides, more than 80% of the population would still have the potential to see Tenet in an indoor theater.”   We’re eager to see how many people will actually go.  As Seth Rogan said about Tenet in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter: “For a while, it seemed like the answer was to kill his greatest fans,” Rogen told THR. “But that’s not the answer of today, it seems, so that’s good. But we have no idea. We don’t want to be the first to rush into anything.” We here are SpyMovieNavigator are watching this closely.

The King's Man

(Currently set for it's US release in September)

The next spy movie scheduled to be released is The King’s Man, the prequel to earlier Kingsman movies.  This is still scheduled for a September 18, 2020 release date in the US.  We can only imagine that what happens with Tenet will have a huge effect as to whether this date changes. In an article on this prequel on movieweb.com by Jon Fuge,  Director Matthew Vaughan said that this prequel will lay the foundations for Kingsman 3. Vaughan says: "We've put seeds for what's going to happen in Kingsman 3 all the way back into this. And it's going to be very different." So, while The King’s Man is a prequel it is being used to set up Kingsman 3 (this sounds like Star Wars numbering here).   What I would have called Kingsman 3 is this prequel, maybe you can think of it as Kingsman 1?  Thus the 4th Kingsman movie would be Kingsman 3?  My head hurts when they do stuff like this.

INDUSTRY NEWS

In industry news, two big recent announcements may change theatrical releases for a long time, one by Disney and one by AMC and Universal. Will Black Widow be affected by these announcements?

DISNEY WILL RELEASE MULAN ON DISNEY+ AND NOT IN MOST THEATERS

The first is an acknowledgement of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the movie business.  Disney announced last week that Mulan will no longer have its initial release in theaters.  Instead, they will be releasing it on September 3rd on Disney Plus, but not as a regular part of the service.    In addition to the monthly $6.99 Disney Plus monthly subscription price, if you want to see this movie, you can rent it for $29.99. It will be released theatrically in markets in which access to Disney Plus is not available.  That means you can see it in a theater if you are in a country that doesn’t have Disney Plus. Initially, we were surprised by the price point.   However, after doing some research, we think the $30 rental price is a fair price for a family movie.   According to Statista.com, in 2019 the average ticket price at North American movie theaters was $9.16 with AMC coming in higher than that.   Let’s make the math easy and call it $10.00 a ticket.   A family of 3 would spend $30 just to see the movie in a theater, not counting the prices of any food and drink you might get.  So the $30 price point seems reasonable.   Assuming that same number of people who would have gone to the theater buy into this, Disney will make more money than if this was in a theater.   A 2016 article on theweek.com says that US theaters end up paying the studios somewhere around 60% of their proceeds from the box office, up to 90% for a first-run movie.  So to Disney’s bottom line, they would net about the equivalent of just under 5 people going the theater to see the movie at the 60% number. Plus, you need the Disney Plus subscription.  Given the estimate of over $1billion in the expected global box office, this has to really hurt theaters. According to an article in Variety, Disney CEO Bob Chapek says that this is a one-time event.  “We’re looking at Mulan as a one-off as opposed to saying there is some new business windowing model that we’re looking at. “ This quote by Chapek is intriguing as Black Widow was pushed back from May 2020 to November 6, 2020, in the US.  MCU fans are now asking Disney to do the same release to Digital strategy for Black Widow as Disney is doing with Mulan.  We’ll see if the “one-off” is a reality or just too good a deal for Disney to not make part of its release model.

UNIVERSAL AND AMC KISS AND MAKE UP

The second bit of general movie news is that prior to this Disney announcement, Universal and AMC made a deal to try to quell the fears of straight-to-digital killing the movie theater market.  After Universal released Trolls World Tour on digital on the same day as theaters after the pandemic hit, AMC banned Universal movies from its theaters.   This new deal mends that fence. Universal movies will be in AMC theaters exclusively for at least 3 weekends or 17 days, instead of the old model of 70 days.  Universal can keep a movie exclusively in theaters for longer than that, but 17 days is the new minimum.   Movies will hit the digital marketplace much sooner, but AMC can still survive on the new release. An August 4th article on CNBC.com by Sarah Whitten talks about how Cinemark and Regal which combined have more theaters than AMC don’t have, nor do they want this deal AMC struck.  So this might get interesting. It’s also interesting when juxtaposing this news with the Disney news which happened a week later.  First, as we said, a theater may have to pay up to 90% of a first release's box office to the studio.   At 17 days, they won’t be able to make that much profit from the movie before they lose exclusivity.  Now, they may be able to keep the movie in the theater while it’s available on digital . And I assume they’d have to pay Universal much less than 90% once digital becomes competition.  That said, I’d rather see Black Widow, The Kings Man, or No Time To Die on a big screen.  They are visual movies.  So, let’s hope this deal helps theaters stay afloat in these changing market conditions.    Second, with Disney charging for Mulan separate from their subscription pricing, how can movie theaters compete with this?   We’re assuming this “one-off” isn’t going to end up as a one-off and Disney does this more often, and possibly with Black Widow.   How will the movie theater chains react? Times are changing and it is not just because of the pandemic.  The combined effects of digital distribution with the impact of the pandemic are likely to change the movie industry to a large degree. We think the studios want to accelerate the move to digital and the pandemic is giving them the excuse to do so.  So stay tuned, we’ll keep you posted.

RED NOTICE

Finally, the release movie called Red Notice has been pushed to 2021.  It doesn’t have a release date yet. So, there you have the latest news on the current state of spy movies for 2020.  We’ll be shocked if it doesn’t change again with the pandemic. But we hope we get to see at least a couple of these movies this year.

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