Thanks to the billions of highly advanced nanites coursing through his veins, Bloodshot, the Valiant comic book character, has incredible resiliency. He’s able to shrug off the most ridiculous damage and keep going. And I guess Sony is hoping that also holds true for their movie adaptation as well.
The Vin Diesel-led superhero blockbuster opened in cinemas in the US this weekend past, where it promptly flopped hard with just a $9.5 million debut. Bloodshot is not a great movie, but it’s debatable how much of its commercial woes is its own fault as due to the Covid-19 pandemic shutting down cinemas and keeping people away, the US box office also had its worst weekend in two decades. Internationally things haven’t looked much better as the $45 million production is only sitting on a worldwide total of $24 million. And with more stringent Covid-19 precautions going into effect, there’s no way Sony can recoup their costs at the box office. So the studio is trying things another way.
As reported by The Wrap, Bloodshot is seeing its digital release date moved up massively and will now debut on home VOD services in the US from 24 March. That means less than two weeks from cinema to home. Universal Pictures was the first studio to make this historic shift when it announced earlier this week that it was moving current theatrical releases The Invisible Man, The Hunt, and Emma to VOD rental as well, while also planning a simultaneous day-and-date digital release for Trolls: World Tour when it arrives in cinemas next month. And like Universal is doing with its films, Sony is making Bloodshot available for rental for $19.99.
In a press statement, Tom Rothman, chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Motion Picture Group, addressed the “unique and exceedingly rare circumstance” of moving a film to digital release so quickly after theatrical release.
Sony Pictures is firmly committed to theatrical exhibition and we support windowing. This is a unique and exceedingly rare circumstance where theaters have been required to close nationwide for the greater good and ‘Bloodshot’ is abruptly unavailable in any medium. Audiences will now have the chance to own ‘Bloodshot’ right away and see it at home, where we are all spending more time. We are confident that — like other businesses hit hard by the virus — movie theaters will bounce back strongly, and we will be there to support them.
The movie industry has taken a gigantic hit in the last few weeks due to the effects of Covid-19 resulting in public lockdown and business closures. In a report from Variety this morning, it’s been estimated that approximately 120, 000 entertainment industry jobs are being lost due to this pandemic. And, frankly, if more Hollywood studios switch to a digital rental model and it proves successful, we can only expect that number to actually increase. We may be looking at the dawn of a new age of convenient entertainment consumption, but it’s going to come at a major cost.
Last Updated: March 19, 2020