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Tom Hanks WWII Movie ‘Greyhound’ Moves From Theatrical Release to Apple TV+

Mike Fleming Jr., reporting for Deadline:

In a real shocker, the WWII naval drama Greyhound that Tom Hanks wrote and stars in has abruptly changed course and will berth at Apple. Originally on the Sony Pictures theatrical calendar for Father’s Day weekend, the film instead will become the biggest feature film commitment made by Apple to premiere on Apple TV+. It is the latest in a growing indication that Apple is making its move, and becoming as aggressive as any streamer or studio in auctions for the acquisition of films and TV projects. […]

It was going to be a major theatrical release for Sony — first slotted for May 8 but then moved into Father’s Day weekend June 19, until the pandemic washed out every studio’s plans and shuttered movie theaters around the world. That’s when the decision was made to alter course. The picture quietly was shopped in stealthy fashion, and it became a bidding battle between the big streamers. I’m told a deal closed in the $70 million range, with the auction brokered by CAA Media Finance and FilmNation.

It’s good to have a bankroll. I get the feeling that the COVID quarantine is accelerating Apple’s aggressiveness in streaming, but when opportunity knocks, you answer the door.

Tuesday, 19 May 2020