One of the effects of the all-around uncertainty created by the COVID-19 pandemic is that the gap between the release of the trailer and the film has crashed. For Hollywood film producers, the obsession of choosing an appropriate release date sometime in the future is fast looking to be a thing of the past, especially when it promises to save them a packet. Lionsgate released the trailer of “The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” featuring Salma Hayek, Ryan Reynolds, and Samuel L. Jackson, and just two months before it premiered on June 16, 2021.
While the concept of a film release being a rush is not exactly new, it does look like that even after things return to normal; a shorter marketing campaign might be here to stay. The obsession with targeting a specific release date may well begin to wane fast. Getting a fix on the release dates often deems more important than the actual film’s quality for many of the top studios, and it is common for release dates to be announcing years in advance and often even before the filming has commenced.
Less Advance Notice Working Well
However, even against this scenario of release dates well into the future. There is an increasing number of examples of films, both big and small, hitting the screens. With much less advance notice. For example, the shift of release date of Sony Pictures’ “The Shallows” by Jaume Collet-Serra. It gets shift to June 24, 2016, from June 29, 2016. Even though it was a small shift, remarkably. It took place just 16 days before its original scheduled date of release. Thanks to a strong buzz and good reviews. The opening weekend of “The Shallows” was larger than anticipated at $16.8 million.
Also recently, Warner Bros. shifted the date of “Godzilla vs. Kong” to March 31, 2021, from the earlier-planned May 21, 2021. After releasing the trailer as late as January 24, just three months before its release. The fact it did not damage its opening was evident as the movie collected $48 million over the Wed-Sun weekend. The success of the movie is remarkable. In that, it opens two months before it was scheduling and was marketing for only three months. Similarly, Universal’s “Us” releasing in March 2019 notched up a massive $71 million on its release. Even though only one trailer releases three months earlier.
Not Necessarily a Success Formula
However, late marketing of films does not always work well In Hollywood. As proven by films like Ghostbusters: Answer the Call, Solo: A Star Wars Story, Dark Shadows, etc. However, it can claim that these films were poor-quality. And that the collection suffers despite the public being aware of them enough to be motivating to watch them in the theaters. The films themselves have to be exciting enough to encourage people to watch them. According to the experts, it is impossible to make a bad film succeed even with a long promotional campaign. While a good film can create waves at the box office even with a short campaign. The pandemic forcing many studios to come up with flexible release dates and making a success of films. It is bound to set many producers thinking regarding the need to have release dates long into the unforeseeable future.