Now that Amazon’s taking over MGM, what it really needs is a theatre circuit.
Owning cinemas would give Amazon a unique post-pandemic advantage. It’s clear from hits like GODZILLA VS. KONG & A QUIET PLACE 2 (pictured – Emily Blunt) that exhibition’s not dead. People are heading back to theatres to see films they really want to see — in IMAX, PLF & 3D with booming Dolby & tubs of buttered popcorn!
With theatres, Amazon could market a Prime+ brand, dedicating one auditorium per multiplex to members, who’d be able to see Amazon’s event content in theatres – features or series. They’d scan barcodes at the box office to charge $1 per person to their accounts. They’d see Amazon’s content theatrically without paying high ticket prices and they’d also be able to see it streaming “free” at home. Prime+ would also resonate with top filmmakers who still want their movies to play theatrically.
This new members-only audience would boost concession revenues for Amazon theatres. As a mega-streamer/exhibitor, Amazon would have the best of both worlds – sharing in moviegoing’s recovery by playing everyone’s tentpoles while also streaming its own content.