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Have Movie Theaters Gotten Their Mojo Back?

Toby Emmerich
Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty
Matthew Belloni
April 24, 2022

There’s an interesting debate going on at Warner Bros. right now. They’ve got Batgirl, a $70 million-ish film that just finished shooting, and the plan under former WarnerMedia C.E.O. Jason Kilar was to release it directly on HBO Max. Kilar’s singular mission, as anyone who walked the lot with him knows, was to build up the streaming service to compete with Netflix, the north star of the entertainment industry, even if it meant shrinking—sorry, evolving—the century-old theatrical business. So debuting on HBO Max a mid-budget DC movie, one based on a known but untested character who already stars in a TV show, made perfect sense.