According to industry analysis, Amazon.com Inc. plans to spend more than US$1 billion a year to produce movies it will release in theatres, resulting in the largest commitment to cinemas by an internet company.
BMA understands that the online retailer aims to make between 12 and 15 movies annually that will get a theatrical release.
The streamer also plans to release fewer films in theatres next year and increase its output over time. That number of releases puts it on par with major studios such as Paramount Pictures.
Streaming services have eschewed theatres with most of their original movies or released the titles for less time and on fewer screens than traditional movie studios.
Netflix Inc., in particular, has aggravated cinema chains by releasing more than a movie a week for viewers at home.
The streaming giant released a sequel to Knives Out in theatres on Wednesday. However, Netflix said it will stay there for just one week before heading to streaming next month. The original film grossed US$312.9 million theatrically in 2019.
Although Amazon has been more open to theatres than Netflix, the streamer is yet to invest as much money in original movies. While Netflix releases nearly 100 films annually, Amazon puts out just a couple dozen, many in languages other than English.
Even though Amazon announced it is in a cost-cutting mode, the company is ramping up its investment in original movies following MGM’s US$8.5 billion acquisition.