Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos Has No Regrets About Glass Onion’s Lost Box Office Potential

Never before has the movie-watching experience been as fragmented as it is today. As much as theaters remain the lifeblood of the film industry, more and more studios are realizing the potential of recouping profits through streaming. Of course, some have managed to figure out that it doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing proposition. If Warner Bros. and HBO Max are anything to go by, then it’s fair to say that successful theatrical marketing campaigns can then lead to similarly successful streaming numbers — case in point, “The Batman.”

But Netflix, unsurprisingly, has other ideas. Obviously, theaters are inherently the main rival to the streaming service, which historically has only conceded theatrical windows when it qualifies Netflix originals as awards contenders. So, in that light, it makes sense why Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos would say the following about “Glass Onion” and its limited run in theaters:

“I think what you saw was a lot of excitement. We drove a ton of buzz with that theatrical release, and we created a bunch of demand and that demand we fulfilled on our subscription service. Our core business is making movies for our members to watch on Netflix, and that’s what we’re really focused. Everything else is really a tactic to drive excitement around those films.”

Using a term as nakedly capitalistic as “tactic” might be the kind of subtlety that Miles Bron would fully endorse, but I suppose we have to give credit for honesty? In any case, it goes without saying that Netflix didn’t devote exorbitant resources to “Glass Onion” and its future sequel for the benefit of theaters. It’s all a ploy to vacuum up as many subscribers as possible, for better or worse.

“Glass Onion” is currently streaming — where else — on Netflix.

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