Australians will have early access to some new movies after all the cinemas were ordered to shut at the beginning of this week.
Roadshow, which distributes Warner Bros films in Australia, has announced it is fast-tracking a slew of recent cinema releases for digital purchase.
The most high-profile among them is DC Comics movie Birds of Prey: The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn , starring Margot Robbie. The action flick was only released into cinemas in early February but will be available digitally from tomorrow.
Out on Monday will be Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears, the movie sequel to the popular ABC show. Miss Fisher was released to cinemas only one month earlier.
The other early release titles are Edward Norton movie Motherless Brooklyn (April 1), Ben Affleck addiction drama The Way Back (April 15), Clint Eastwood true-life drama Richard Jewell (April 1), death row drama Just Mercy (March 28), Midway (out today) and Go! (out today).
Most of the titles are still within the traditional three-month theatrical window, which would usually forbid the home entertainment release within 90 days of a cinematic debut, but studios have had to respond in these extraordinary times as the coronavirus pandemic closed public spaces such as cinemas the world over.
Roadshow is the first major studio in Australia to confirm it will bring forward home entertainment releases after local cinemas were shut after 12pm this past Monday.
In the US, other studios including Disney, Sony and Universal have released recent in-cinema titles including Emma, Bloodshot and Onward to digital video-on-demand. Their Australian counterparts have not committed to following suit yet.
The coronavirus pandemic has hit the arts and entertainment industry hard, shutting down cinemas and suspending productions with the expectation it will cost the industry at least tens of billions of dollars.
Movie release dates have been delayed to much later in the year or indefinitely, including anticipated titles such as Mulan, Black Widow, A Quiet Place Part II and Wonder Woman 1984.
Disney brought forward the digital streaming release of Frozen 2 to Disney+ by three months.
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Originally published as New movies released early for home viewing