Sony Pictures is the latest studio to try and recoup costs for a movie impacted by the coronavirus by releasing it on digital early. The first ones out the gate was Universal but most of the movies they were releasing already had decent theatrical runs. The same for Warner Bros. and STX Films. Sony and Disney were the ones with bigger releases that were impacted by the virus. For Disney it was Onward and for Sony it was Bloodshot. The first in what was supposed to be a cinematic universe based on Valiant Comics fell extremely flat due to theater closures. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Sony has decided to release the movie on digital down on March 24th but Sony said in a statement they remain committed to the theatrical model.
"Sony Pictures is firmly committed to theatrical exhibition and we support windowing," Sony Pictures chairman Tom Rothman said Wednesday in a statement. "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."
So yet another movie comes to digital early. As have previously mentioned in articles about these releases we shouldn't expect to see many if any movies with six-figure budgets go-to digital early. Those sorts of movies need the box office to survive. Movies like Bloodshot with its $45 million dollar budget and ~$25 million at the box office is the perfect movie for Sony to push out early due to coronavirus. This is also a test. If pirated copies of these movies skyrocket then we can forget any studio persuing the simultaneous digital and theatrical release model again. So if you want to see Bloodshot or The Invisible Man or Birds of Prey just pay for them. Otherwise, no studio will take the risk again.
After he and his wife are suddenly assassinated, Marine Ray Garrison is reborn by a team of scientists. Enhanced with nanotechnology, he becomes a superhuman, biotech killing machine – Bloodshot. As Ray first trains with fellow super-soldiers, he struggles to recall anything from his previous years. But when his memories flood back and he remembers the man that killed both him and his wife, he breaks out of the facility hellbent on revenge, only to discover that there's more to the conspiracy than he originally felt.
Bloodshot, directed by David S. F. Wilson, stars Vin Diesel, Eiza González, Sam Heughan, Toby Kebbell, and Guy Pearce. It's out in theaters now and will be released for digital download on March 24th.