LOS ANGELES, Sept 9 (Reuters) - Horror flick "Halloween
Kills" will stream on Comcast Corp's Peacock streaming
service next month starting on the same day it debuts in movie
theaters, distributor Universal Pictures said in a statement on
The strategy is a shift from Comcast's earlier plan to send
the film exclusively to theaters beginning Oct. 15. Hollywood
studios have been experimenting with release patterns as cinemas
work to recover from COVID-19 closures and media companies try
to boost interest in their streaming offerings.
Cinema operators including AMC Entertainment,
Cineworld Plc and Cinemark Holdings Inc say the
streaming option eats into their business and have urged studios
to stick with theater-only debuts.
"Halloween Kills" stars Jamie Lee Curtis in a follow-up to
the 2018 revival of the classic horror franchise. People who
want to stream the new movie at home will need a subscription to
the $5-a-month Peacock Premium or to Peacock Premium Plus, which
costs $10 per month. The film will not be available on the free
version of Peacock.
Universal employed the same strategy for "The Boss Baby"
animated family sequel in July. That movie generated $105.8
million in global box office sales, and Comcast executives said
it also helped boost subscribers to Peacock.
For theaters, the Delta variant of COVID-19 has slowed a
hoped-for comeback in moviegoing. Upcoming films scheduled for
this year include James Bond movie "No Time to Die," sci-fi epic
"Dune" and Marvel movie "Eternals."
Some movies, including Tom Cruise's "Top Gun: Maverick,"
have been delayed until next year.
(Reporting by Lisa Richwine in Los Angeles
Editing by Matthew Lewis and David Gregorio)