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George Clooney says theaters don’t want to release his movies anymore

Hollywood superstar George Clooney has bemoaned theatre chains not giving his recent movies a fair swing with theatrical releases.
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Hollywood star George Clooney has bemoaned theater chains not giving his recent movies a fair swing with theatrical releases, while he promoted his new film The Tender Bar.

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As Hollywood studios move further into the digital streaming world for major movie releases, there have been box office drop-offs for big-name actors. George Clooney, in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, has spoken at length about how he believes theater chains can no longer guarantee a cinematic release. Clooney also praised streaming services for changing the game and allowing a far more diverse range of movies.

“I mean, you always have to fight. I’m also doing a film with Brad [Pitt] for Apple and that’s a big-budget film. The secret is you have to work to guarantee that there’s also a theatrical release. There’s nothing more exciting than watching a comedy in a room full of people, or a scary movie. I find that part of our job is always to make sure that we’re protecting the integrity of having films in theaters … But honestly, theaters weren’t jumping at taking a lot of the films that that I’ve been making for a long time. They were like, ‘Yeah, that’s not really our thing anymore.’ So the streamers have really opened up a door in a way to keep those kinds of stories alive.”

George Clooney, Entertainment Weekly interview

Clooney definitely has a point, with one of the most discussed and viewed movies over the Christmas period being Netflix’s Don’t Look Up, which featured an ensemble cast of A-list actors. Though it did receive a limited theatrical release, it has only earned just under $800,000 at the box office, while simultaneously being the second most-watched film in Netflix history within 28 days of release.

Clooney may not potentially have the pull he used to, but that’s much more of a problem depending on the contracts signed by actors. Some Hollywood actors, like Robert Downey Jr., sign contracts for films that give them a percentage of the film’s gross at the box office, and others have moved away from this to strike longer-term deals with major studios, like Halle Berry’s recent partnership with Netflix.

Clooney’s aforementioned project with Brad Pitt for Apple is a yet-untitled thriller to be directed by Spider-Man: No Way Home‘s Jon Watts. Meanwhile, The Tender Bar is currently streaming on Amazon after a limited theatrical run in December.

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Jamie Dunkin
Writer for We Got This Covered, and other sites in the GAMURS Group. Football fan, LEGO enthusiast, and beer enjoyer. @jamie_dunkin on Twitter