Has Trolls World Tour Changed the Game?
The current global pandemic has led to some strange times for film and television, with massive delays and changes affecting many highly anticipated movies. Will all this happening, it's hard not to feel affected. You start to feel like you're losing your shine. But the grass ain't always greener on the other side...
Its official, Trolls has got in our heads... While the grass may not be greener for fans stuck indoors, Dreamworks and Universal, however, are claiming this new field is just as lucrative a market... So far.
While Universal has yet to give an official number on the revenue made by this straight to rental animation, Trolls World Tour has been boasted as the studio’s best-ever digital debut.
The Dreamworks animated film intended initially for cinemas, claims to have made around 10 times the amount of its previous digital best-seller- Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, on opening day. With Jurassic World taking up to three million dollars on-demand, many experts are guessing Trolls World Tour is likely to have taken up to $100 million in sales.
The numbers are impressive, matching the opening box office of many successful movies, but reports from Universal and Dreamworks should be taken with a pinch of salt.
With no clear or official way to yet track rental sales, due to the variety of outlets and ways in which audiences can buy, we don't know official statistics as we do with traditional cinema releases.
The news is also coming directly from Universal who let’s be honest, would be unlikely to tell us if the film was doing badly. Trolls World Tour does rank number one in most rental lists, so this would match what the movie studio is claiming. But whether this model will make for continuous revenue akin to a cinema release is yet to be seen.
In the coming weeks, we are unlikely to get any concrete numbers for the majority of video-on-demand releases as studios simply have the ability to only tell us good headlines, as streaming services such Amazon and Netflix have done in the past.
While rental is a sure way for studios to balance the number of films they have to release, on top of getting some form of income, it's not going to immediately re-write the system. While other releases, especially family films could use this strategy in the future, the event of going to a cinema is a much more profitable venture. Especially considering rental, streaming, and merchandising all comes down the line, on top of the money made during a theatrical release.
Trolls World Tour is certainly an interesting film to study from a business point of view, but one thing is for sure, the coming months and years will be the testament to how entertainment changes, but not with this early experiment.
Universal Pictures, who are owned by a television company- Comcast, has a lot more vested interest in creating content for the small screen, meaning we should hold on hope other studios stay loyal to cinema chains.
Written by David Osgar