Spy Movie News Article – Sept 1 2020: NO TIME TO DIE., M: I 7, TENET, THE KING’S MAN

Related: Spy Movie News Article – Sept 1 2020: NO TIME TO DIE., M: I 7, TENET, THE KING’S MAN

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Here's our September 1st, 2020, edition of Spy Movie News where we are Cracking the Code of Spy Movies with the latest updates on TENET, Mission: Impossible 7, and NO TIME TO DIE,  plus we look at some industry trends.

TENET

  • In breaking news, we have confirmed that TENET did open in England on August 26 and was planned to open in over 20 additional countries on that same date. And it has a scattered release plan through the September 18th release in Japan. It officially opens September 3rd in the United States, but early access showing started August 31st. 
  • Tom Cruise was seen going to the pre-screening of TENET in England, so there you go.
  • Our co-host in the UK, Vicky Hodges saw TENET the day it opened in the UK, August 26th.  We have a no-spoiler podcast out on it, released August 28th. Check it out, here. It's a fun 8 minutes and has no spoilers.
  • Variety.com reports that TENET had a strong opening for the weekend in Europe with box office sales at $53,000,000 for a film that cost $200 million to produce.   They quote Toby Emmerich, Warner Brothers Pictures Group chairman as saying: “We are off to a fantastic start internationally and couldn't be more pleased.”  See Variety.com for the full story. 

 Disney

  • Disney didn't wait to see what would happen with TENET or Disney's own, The New Mutants which they released last weekend. Disney pushed The King’s Man to 2021. 
  • Interestingly, they announced this the day before The New Mutants hit theaters. This does make one wonder if Disney plans to push back Black Widow from its November 6th release.   We're guessing ticket sales for TENET will have a big impact on that decision.
  • It also makes us wonder what 2021's release schedule will look like. Will all the movies that have been pushed to 2021 have an impact on the movies scheduled for later in 2021? Might they be pushed to 2022?  Mission: Impossible 7,  we're staring you down for an answer on this one. 

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 7

  • Here's some Mission: Impossible 7 news.   They suffered a little set back after an expensive motorcycle stunt went wrong. Check cinemablend.com for all the news. A motorcycle stunt went wrong as the bike burst into flames, but the stuntman is OK. but it was a well planned and costly stunt that had been in the works for a long time.  And it is now a financial and time-frame set back for Mission: Impossible 7.  This movie is scheduled for release on November 19th, 2021. Reportedly, Tom Cruise was not too happy about the accident.  See Cinemablend.com again for more details. 
  •  In our August 1st edition of Spy Movie News, we mentioned that Mission: Impossible 7 wanted to blow up a 111-year-old bridge in Poland. Now here is an update.  Writer-director Chris McQuarrie said “Mission: Impossible says they would never harm icons or historical landmarks.  They were looking for a bridge that needed to come down somewhere in the world and they were contacted by Poland.  But never a monument. No historically significant monuments would be destroyed. But there is a possibility that a portion of the bridge which is now unsafe would need to come down. See empireonline.com/movies for more info. The Bottom Line is that Mission: Impossible is acting responsibly and working with Poland on what might be possible. 
  • Screenrant reports that Tom Cruise, a certified helicopter pilot, during a break, landed a helicopter near the 9th hole at a golf course in England so he could grab lunch at the clubhouse. How's that for a stunt? 
  • And here’s another real stunt.  Nme.com reports that Tom Cruise will jump off a motorcycle mid-air for a fabulous action stunt in Mission: Impossible 7.  He's like 160 feet in the air. Photos at Nme.com and also at thesun.co.uk.  #CruiseisCool.

NO TIME TO DIE

Let’s move on to NO TIME TO DIE.
  • From “The Spy Command”,  August 18th, 2020 edition: there hasn't been a whole lot of news for NO TIME TO DIE, but there has been enough to get fans interested. As usual, there are questions. 
  •  You see a lot of licensed product news like the Funko pops and usually, that means that the release is imminent for the film. However, as “The Spy Command” says, who knows if the licensees are really in the know about when the movie will release, so there's still always a question.
  • “The Spy Command” also reports that there was an investor's call by MGM with its investors and the chief operating officer said: “yeah, two releases in 2020 are scheduled, but there is a but, and who knows if these releases will slip.” There is always a but.
  • Indiewire.com reported that if there is another slip for NO TIME TO DIE, it is unlikely that the movie will be pushed to summer 2021.  There have been no EON Productions summer releases since Licence to Kill's release in July 1989.  That movie was not well received great release, coming in 4th at that time. It was the worst opening of any EON Productions Bond film.  So, it’s unlikely that it would be the summer of 2021.
  • Some things that will affect the release, of course, are:
  • worldwide statistics for the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The decisions countries are making concerning theaters opening or not.
  •  Billie Eilish’s recording of the NO TIME TO DIE theme song was a first for James Bond films.  It was recorded at her home studio and not in a traditional recording studio Read all about it at cinemablend.com
  • And also at cinemablend.com: there is a new image of Rami Malek's character, Safin, which was also released on Instagram. Check that out. It's pretty cool.
  • Radiotimes.com reports even this summer that Cary Fukunaga is not tweaking NO TIME TO DIE.  He says he had mentally and emotionally finished the film in the spring of 2020.   Read the full report at Radiotimes.com. 

INDUSTRY NEWS

  • In general news, some companies are moving filming locations to Canada due to COVID-19.  Other venues being looked at are the UK and Australia.  For The Last Duel, Ben Affleck, the producer and star, is doing this. Will we see more of this? Cnbc.com has an article on this topic.   Will this affect planned releases of movies in the fall of 2020?  We will see. 
  • And a belated Happy 90th Birthday to Sean Connery. Our first 007 from Eon Productions, who was also recently voted the best James Bond in a poll by radiotimes.com.  Timothy Dalton came in at #2 in the poll. 
  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 Article – Sept 1 2020:  NO TIME TO DIE., M: I 7, TENET,  THE KING’S MAN

Here's our September 1st, 2020, edition of Spy Movie News where we are Cracking the Code of Spy Movies with the latest updates on TENET, Mission: Impossible 7, and NO TIME TO DIE,  plus we look at some industry trends.

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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