‘Venom’ Sequel Regains Top Spot on Weekly Vudu Chart

Sony Pictures’ Venom: Let There Be Carnage regained the top spot on the chart of the 10 most-popular titles on Fandango’s transactional digital service Vudu the week ended Jan. 2.

The Marvel Comics-based sequel, available for digital purchase and rental, stars Tom Hardy as journalist Eddie Brock, who interviews a serial killer (Woody Harrelson) who becomes the host of the symbiote Carnage. The film rose from No. 2 on the chart the previous week.

Taking the silver on the chart was MGM’s latest James Bond film No Time to Die, which rose from No. 3 the previous week. Available for digital rental and purchase, it’s the last Bond film with Daniel Craig in the lead role.

Landing at No. 3 was last week’s chart topper, Sony Pictures’ Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City. The sci-fi horror actioner, available for premium digital rental, returns to the origins of the franchise in Raccoon City.

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With the recent release of the latest “Spider-Man” film in theaters, Spider-Man: No Way Home, 2019’s Spider-Man Far from Home and 2012’s The Amazing Spider-Man (starring Andrew Garfield) jumped to No. 9 and No. 14 on the chart.

Vudu’s top 10 titles for the week ended Dec. Jan. 2, in terms of revenue, were:

  1. Venom: Let There Be Carnage
  2. No Time to Die
  3. Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
  4. Encanto
  5. Dune
  6. Free Guy
  7. Clifford the Big Red Dog
  8. The Last Duel
  9. Spider-Man: Far from Home
  10. Yellowstone: Season 4

Latest ‘Resident Evil’ Film Tops Weekly Vudu Chart

Sony Pictures’ Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City took the top spot on the chart of the 10 most-popular titles on Fandango’s transactional digital service Vudu the week ended Dec. 26.

The sci-fi horror actioner, available for premium digital rental, returns to the origins of the franchise in Raccoon City.

Dropping to No. 2 from the top spot was Sony’s Marvel Comics-based sequel Venom: Let There Be Carnage, available for digital purchase and rental. It stars Tom Hardy as journalist Eddie Brock, who interviews a serial killer (Woody Harrelson) who becomes the host of the symbiote Carnage.

Taking the bronze on the chart was MGM’s latest James Bond film No Time to Die, which rose from No. 4 the previous week. Available for digital rental and purchase, it’s the last Bond film with Daniel Craig in the lead role.

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Meanwhile, holiday films continued to appear on the Vudu chart the week of Christmas. The 2000 live-action film How the Grinch Stole Christmas, starring Jim Carrey, came in at No. 4, and Illumination’s 2018 animated The Grinch, with the title character voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch, landed at No. 7.

New to the chart were Disney’s animated musical Encanto — available for digital purchase (and also available free to stream for Disney+ subscribers) — and the horror-suspense thriller Antlers — also available for digital purchase — at No. 5 and No. 6, respectively.

Vudu’s top 10 titles for the week ended Dec. 26, in terms of revenue, were:

  1. Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
  2. Venom: Let There Be Carnage
  3. No Time to Die
  4. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)
  5. Encanto
  6. Antlers
  7. The Grinch
  8. Clifford the Big Red Dog
  9. Free Guy
  10. Elf

Thriller ‘Arctic Void’ Available Via PVOD Jan. 14 From Level 33

The sci-fi thriller Arctic Void will be released in theaters and via premium VOD Jan. 14 from Level 33 Entertainment.

It’s the story of childhood friends, Ray Marsh and Alan Meursault, who are on a tourist ship in the Arctic to make an episode of their modestly popular travel and nature show “Vagabond.” Their regular cameraman fails to get a visa, so they’re joined by local hire and expat Sean Tibbets. What starts as a once in a lifetime day cruise quickly descends into madness as all but the three of them vanish from the boat.

The film stars Michael Weaver, Tim Griffin and Justin Huen.

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‘Venom’ Sequel Again Leads Weekly Vudu Chart

Sony Pictures’ Venom: Let There Be Carnage again led the chart of the 10 most-popular titles on Fandango’s transactional digital service Vudu the week ended Dec. 5.

The Marvel Comics-based superhero film, which arrived Nov. 23 for digital purchase, stars Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, Naomie Harris and Woody Harrelson. In the sequel, Eddie Brock (Hardy) interviews serial killer Cletus Kasady (Harrelson), who becomes the host of the symbiote Carnage.

Coming in at No. 2 was the Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures feature Dune: Part One, which arrived for premium digital ownership and rental Dec. 3 after its theatrical and HBO Max debut. Directed by Denis Villeneuve (ArrivalBlade Runner 2049), the film, starring Timothée Chalamet, is based on the novel of the same name by Frank Herbert.

Taking the bronze on the chart was Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel, based on the true story about France’s last sanctioned duel. The film, from Disney-owned 20th Century Studios, stars Matt Damon, Adam Driver, Jodie Comer and Ben Affleck and became available for digital ownership Nov. 30.

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Holiday films continued to populate the chart. The 2000 live-action film How the Grinch Stole Christmas, starring Jim Carrey, came in at No. 4; Illumination’s 2018 animated The Grinch, with the title character voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch, landed at No. 7; and Elf, starring Will Ferrell, landed at No. 9. 

Vudu’s top 10 titles for the week ended Dec. 5, in terms of revenue, were:

  1. Venom: Let There Be Carnage
  2. Dune
  3. The Last Duel
  4. Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas
  5. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
  6. No Time to Die
  7. Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch
  8. Free Guy
  9. Elf
  10. Yellowstone: Season 4

‘Dune’ Due Via Premium Digital Purchase and Rental Dec. 3, on 4K, Blu-ray and DVD Jan. 11

Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures’ Dune will arrive for premium digital ownership ($29.99) and VOD ($24.99) on Dec. 3. The film will also be available on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray and DVD  Jan. 11.

Dune, which has garnered more than $350 million at the global box office, was directed by Denis Villeneuve (Arrival, Blade Runner 2049) from a screenplay he co-wrote with Jon Spaihts and Eric Roth, based on the novel of the same name written by Frank Herbert.

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The film stars Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name, Little Women), Rebecca Ferguson (Doctor Sleep, Mission: Impossible — Fallout), Oscar Isaac (the “Star Wars” franchise), Josh Brolin (Milk, Avengers: Infinity War), Stellan Skarsgård (TV’s “Chernobyl,” Avengers: Age of Ultron), Dave Bautista (the “Guardians of the Galaxy” films, Avengers: Endgame), Stephen McKinley Henderson (Fences, Lady Bird), Zendaya (Spider-Man: Homecoming, TV’s “Euphoria”), Chang Chen (Mr. Long, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), David Dastmalchian (Blade Runner 2049, The Dark Knight), Sharon Duncan-Brewster (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, TV’s “Sex Education”), with Charlotte Rampling (45 Years, Assassin’s Creed), with Jason Momoa (Aquaman, “Game of Thrones”), and Oscar winner Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men, Skyfall).

Dune tells the story of Paul Atreides (Chalamet), a brilliant and gifted young man born into a great destiny beyond his understanding, who must travel to the most dangerous planet in the universe to ensure the future of his family and his people. As malevolent forces explode into conflict over the planet’s exclusive supply of the most precious resource in existence — a commodity capable of unlocking humanity’s greatest potential — only those who can conquer their fear will survive.

 

The Blu-ray, DVD and 4K discs will include the featurette “The Royal Houses.”

Extras on the Blu-ray and 4K editions will also include:

  • Filmbooks: House Atreides
  • Filmbooks: House Harkonnen
  • Filmbooks: The Fremen
  • Filmbooks: The Spice Melange
  • Inside Dune: The Training Room
  • Inside Dune: The Spice Harvester
  • Inside Dune: The Sardaukar Battle
  • Building the Ancient Future
  • My Desert, My Dune
  • Constructing the Ornithopters
  • Designing the Sandworm
  • Beware the Baron
  • Wardrobe from Another World
  • A New Soundscape

Bond Thriller ‘No Time to Die’ Leads Weekly Vudu Chart

The latest James Bond film, No Time to Die, led the chart of the 10 most popular titles on Fandango’s transactional VOD service Vudu the week ended Nov. 14.

The MGM/United Artists Releasing spy thriller, the fifth and final Bond movie featuring Daniel Craig as Agent 007, is available for premium digital rental. Vudu is offering gift cards for the film.

Coming in at No. 2 was Disney’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, the latest Marvel Comics superhero film. It is newly available for digital purchase.

Yellowstone: Season 4, the fourth installment in the Kevin Costner series about a family of ranchers, took the bronze on the chart. The digital UHD version of the season is currently available only on Vudu, according to the service.

Coming in at No. 4 was previous chart topper Free Guy, which is available for digital purchase and rental. The Disney-owned 20th Century Studios film stars Ryan Reynolds as a bank teller who discovers he is actually a background player in an open-world video game and decides to become the hero of his own story.

In the fifth spot on the chart was Disney’s Jungle Cruise, available for digital purchase. Based on the classic Disneyland ride, the film stars Dwayne Johnson as Frank, the skipper of an Amazon River tour boat, who is recruited by explorer Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt), who seeks an ancient tree with mythical healing abilities.

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Vudu’s top 10 titles for the week ended Nov. 14, in terms of revenue, were:

  1. No Time to Die
  2. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
  3. Yellowstone: Season 4
  4. Free Guy
  5. Jungle Cruise
  6. The Suicide Squad
  7. The Addams Family 2
  8. Old Henry
  9. Dangerous
  10. Old

CEO Chapek: Disney to Remain Flexible on Theatrical/PVOD Window

With the theatrical market slowly emerging from the pandemic era, Disney remains unconvinced about a return to the theatrical-first distribution model for original movies.

Speaking Nov. 10 on the company’s fiscal call, CEO Bob Chapek said that while the pandemic appears to be slowing, consumer attitudes toward the consumption of movies has changed. In the fiscal year, Disney released two theatrical titles, Black Widow and Jungle Cruise, concurrently on its $19.99 Premier Access premium VOD platform. That compared with Mulan, Disney’s first PVOD release, in the previous-year period. Widow generated $60 million in PVOD revenue in the movie’s opening weekend, the only film for which Disney has publicly disclosed PVOD sales.

“We had a number of titles released going to theatrical that will eventually go to Disney+, [and] what we’re seeing is some recovery of the theatrical exhibition market, which is a good thing,” Chapek said.

At the same time, the executive said the company is watching “very, very carefully” different types of movies, including family films, to see how different age demos react to theatrical releases and come back to theaters.

Of the top 12 movies at the domestic box office this year thus far, five are Disney titles, including No. 1 in ticket sales: Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, with $224 million in revenue ($430 million globally). The movie was not released concurrently on PVOD.

“We’re sticking with our plan of flexibility,” Chapek said. “We’re still unsure how the market place is going to react when family films come back with a theatrical-first window.”

He said theatrical movies released this have had a “fairly short” theatrical window in regards to the legacy window period.

“We’re doing that so we can get our films quicker to Disney+, but at the same time see if the theatrical market can kick back into full gear as we prime the pump with [new releases],” Chapek said, adding the studio would announce distribution on a title-by-title basis.

“We’re in kind of a flux and change, still,” he said. “While COVID will be in the rearview mirror, God willing, I think change in consumer behavior is going to be more permanent. So, we’re reading that on a weekly basis.”

Whether that “reading” includes more Premier Access releases and shorter windows from the already abbreviated 45-day exclusive exhibition period will depend on market conditions. The days of coddling exhibitors would appear over at Disney.

“We’re going to do what’s best for our shareholders, ultimately,” Chapek said.

Vudu Bows ‘No Time to Die’ Gift Cards

For the Nov. 9 premium digital rental debut of the new James Bond thriller No Time to Die, Vudu is offering customers the option of gifting the film via a No Time to Die-themed digital gift card.

The film is available on Vudu as a $19.99 premium rental. 

Vudu users can select their favorite characters and send different ones to friends and family to see the home entertainment release of Daniel Craig’s final film as 007.  The Bond-themed gift cards are available here.

Vudu will be offering digital gift cards featuring the following characters from No Time to Die:

  • Daniel Craig (James Bond)
  • Léa Seydoux (Madeleine)
  • Rami Malek (Lyutsifer Safin)
  • Lashana Lynch (Nomi)
  • Ben Whishaw (Q)
  • Naomie Harris (Moneypenny)
  • Ralph Fiennes (M)
  • Ana de Armas (Paloma)

 

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MGM’s ‘No Time to Die’ Hitting PVOD Channels Nov. 9

MGM/United Artists Releasing’s latest James Bond movie, No Time to Die, is set to hit premium video-on-demand channels on Nov. 9 — one month after the movie’s North American release.

While no official announcement has been made, media reports say the movie will be available for $19.99 and a 48-hour rental window on premium video-on-demand platforms Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, Comcast’s Xfinity Store, DirecTV Stream, Charter’s Spectrum TV and Fandango-owned Vudu. The news was first reported by Variety.

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No Time to Die is the fifth and final Bond movie featuring Daniel Craig as Agent 007. The film has generated more than $667million at the global box office, including nearly $144 million domestically.

The 30-day theatrical window mirrors Universal Pictures’ approach to many of its 2021 movie releases. MGM recently offered The Addams Family 2 on PVOD about a month after its theatrical debut. The animation sequel generated more than $93 million at the global box office, including more than $53 million domestically.

AFM Panel: Digital Marketplace Shifting to PVOD, AVOD and FAST

The digital marketplace is shifting, said panelists at the virtual American Film Market Nov. 1. Premium VOD has accelerated during the pandemic while subscription services’ pullback from buying independent content has made free ad-supported services such as AVOD and FAST the new target for content distributors.

The pandemic made PVOD a necessary distribution model, said Michael Murphy, president of Gravitas Ventures. As it subsides, “it’s going to be interesting” to see if the move to PVOD continues, he said.

“Let the consumer decide how they’re going to spend their dollars,” he said, noting a Gravitas release scheduled for January will have a 21-day theatrical window followed by PVOD.

“The splits in PVOD are better than the splits in theatrical,” he noted, adding “we still believe in the theatrical moviegoing experience.”

“We’re experimenting as the world continues to evolve,” he said.

Greg Barnard, director of content and acquisitions, at Vizio, said that based on the data collected via the company’s Smartcast system, consumers are turning more and more to free ad-supported content.

“People are looking for free options,” he said. “They’re looking to watch free content somewhere. It’s a very high-search term.”

Ad-supported free services are “breathing new life into our library” as SVOD services such as Netflix have “scaled back the number of films they acquire and what they want to pay,” Murphy added.

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Noting that Peacock has licensed a lot of content from Gravitas, he said, “It’s a little bit of a gold rush now in AVOD.”

Discovery and marketing in the digital space is still a work in progress, they said.

“Sometimes, it’s thought that you’ve got to do traditional television, traditional commercials for an awareness campaign,” Murphy said. “With PVOD, we felt that you could be a little bit more specific in your spends, try to spend maybe with the platform, spend with Amazon. And also knowing that although maybe someone’s not going to rent the movie on Amazon, everyone goes to Amazon to shop, so it’s kind of two birds with one stone there. You can get an awareness campaign, as well as potentially a click through or tap through to that ultimate buy.”

“Making content easy to find, discoverable, accessible … is absolutely critical to what we’re doing,” Barnard said. Placement on the screen of the smart TV is prime real estate.

“We own all the marketing on our platform, and that’s really powerful for us,” he said.

Packaging content and gathering the right creative for the digital space is key, they said.

Vizio likes collections around “a series, a moment, a vertical,” he said, adding he’d rather have all the seasons of two series, rather than just one or two seasons of 10 series.

To attract viewers, Vizio often asks for better creative.

“Creative that is just not intriguing enough” for the digital space is a common problem, he said.

Murphy noted he “just added some horsepower to our creative team” with a new hire.

“We need to be more aggressive and forward leaning with our providers,” he said.

Despite the move to digital distribution, Murphy said Gravitas hasn’t abandoned physical disc release, if it’s cost effective, mostly via manufacture on demand.

“Our filmmakers like it,” he said.