December 27, 2021
The Batman, Warner Bros. Pictures’ reboot of the venerable superhero franchise featuring Robert Pattinson as the newest caped crusader, is set to begin streaming on HBO Max on April 19, 2022. The Matt Reeves-directed movie hits theaters on March 4.
The release dates were reiterated by WarnerMedia CEO Jason Kilar in a recent Vox’s Recode podcast — the executive’s second Q&A session in 2021.
With WarnerMedia’s controversial 2021 day-and-date theatrical/Max distribution strategy in its final days, the media company is looking to implement an industry-standard 45-day exclusive theatrical window for its box office slate in 2022. That includes pending DC’s Black Adam, The Flash, and separately, Elvis, among others.
“I feel really, really good knowing that [those movies], and a whole host of other movies, are literally going to be showing up on day 46 on Max in a variety of territories all over the world,” Kilar said. “That is a very, very big change that I don’t think people appreciate, and I feel really good about it.”
Indeed, HBO traditionally does not have access to theatrical titles for at least eight months after their box office runs.
Kilar, who is likely to exit his position at WarnerMedia after its sale to Discovery passes regulatory approval sometime next year, said the concurrent release strategy has helped drive Max subscriptions — while at times undermining a non-blockbuster film’s box office potential. Warner’s last weekend box office winner was Godzilla vs. Kong on March 31.
“Think about when movies [used to show] up on HBO,” Kilar said. “That is a huge change from where things were in 2018, 2017, 2016.”