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ViacomCBS CEO Likes ‘Fast Follow’ Model For Films Headed To Streaming

Michael King

During Thursday morning’s 2Q 2021 Earnings Call, ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish said the company likes the so-called “fast follow” model for film releases, which places them on streaming platforms 45 days after their theatrical release. Bakish said they plan to continue the model going forward.

Paramount Pictures used the model this summer with A Quiet Place Part II, releasing the film in late May, following it up with a streaming release on Paramount+ in July.

Bakish went on to say that the company would look at titles on a case-by-case basis.

In comparison to A Quiet Place Part II, for the upcoming release of Paw Patrol The Movie, Paramount chose a day-and-date release strategy, opting to have the film come out in theaters and on Paramount+ on the same day — similar to what Warner Bros. has opted to do with its films and HBO Max.

“For that audience, i.e. families with young children, right now in the middle of COVID,” Bakish said, “We wanted to provide both choices for consumers, because that, we think, gets it to the largest potential consumer base.”

ViacomCBS company officials did not respond to questions regarding changes regarding the reduced numbers of people heading to movie theaters in the wake of the Delta COVID variant moving through many states in recent weeks.

Paramount Plus

Paramount+ is a subscription video streaming service that includes on-demand access to 12,000+ TV show episodes including originals Star Trek: Discovery, Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants, and MTV’s Laguna Beach. Meet captivating characters, catch up on your favorite sport, explore new worlds in the growing collection of Paramount+.

Previously under the name ‘CBS All Access,’ Subscribers can choose between their Essentials Plan (which includes ads) for $4.99/month, or go commercial-free with their Premium Plan for $9.99/month.

With their Premium Plan, in addition to not having ads, you will also get access to your local CBS affiliate to stream your local news, prime-time line-up, and late-night. You will also be able to download offline and watch select shows in 4K.

With the lower cost “Essential” plan, you will still be able to watch live NFL games, Champions League, and national news – but you will no longer get your local CBS affiliate like the old ad-supported plan.

With their new app, enjoy advanced recommendations, curated homepages, and new content categories while still being able to stream major live sports like NFL, College Football, College Basketball. Sports fans will also appreciate the service’s inclusion of NFL on CBS, PGA Tour, along with every match of UEFA Champions League and Serie A.

Paramount has pulled the family film Clifford The Big Red Dog from its scheduled September 17 release date due to concerns surrounding the variant. No replacement release date for the film has been announced.

A new study from Hub Research indicated that most consumers prefer to watch new releases from home. According to the study, two-thirds of consumers believe they will regularly stream new movies from home in the next year.

Over the course of the year, Disney has opted to release movies simultaneously in theaters and via Disney+ to consumers who pay an additional $30 for Premier Access. Warner Bros. has taken a day-and-date strategy with new releases, choosing to release films simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max.

While Disney has apparently released its final Premier Access film in Jungle Cruise and Warner Bros. has indicated that it does not plan to continue the day-and-date release plan beyond the end of 2021, it remains to be seen whether alternative release strategies will become the norm in the industry in 2022 and beyond.

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