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‘Freaky’ Director Slams Studios Over Day-and-Date Releases: ‘Stop Trying to Suck Two D*cks at the Same Time’

This weekend's day-and-date release of "Halloween Ends" has brought a controversial topic back from the dead.

FREAKY, from left: director Christopher Landon, Kathryn Newton, on set, 2020. ph: Brian Douglas / © Universal Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection

Christopher Landon and Kathryn Newton on the set of “Freaky”

©Universal/Courtesy Everett Collection

Michael Myers is back in theaters this weekend with the release of “Halloween Ends,” but you can also watch the legendary killer’s (allegedly) final battle with Laurie Strode from the comfort of your own home.
Universal gave the film a day-and-date release, choosing to begin streaming Haddonfield’s latest nightmare on Peacock on the same day that it opened in theaters. It’s a strategy that has been controversial since its inception. At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Warner Bros. famously announced that all of its new films would begin streaming on HBO Max the same day that they opened in theaters: a move that prompted widespread outcry from Hollywood’s top filmmakers. While that decision was eventually walked back at Warner Bros., the day-and-date trend across studios continues to irk filmmakers who are passionate about the theatrical experience.
Christopher Landon counts himself among that group. The horror maestro behind the “Happy Death Day” series is still bitter about how quickly his 2020 film “Freaky” began streaming. In light of “Halloween Ends” streaming on Peacock, he took to Twitter on Saturday to share his thoughts in a passionate thread.
“Ooooooh I feel another rant coming on: Today it’s the Day & Date release strategy for ‘Halloween Ends,'” Landon wrote, before offering some simple advice to studios. “Stop doing this. Please. It doesn’t work.”
He continued: “Studios: stop gambling with filmmakers and their movies to try and prop up your fledgling streaming services. This happened to me on Freaky and it destroyed us. We worked SO HARD to make a fun movie. Blood sweat and tears. Months away from our families. And for what? They love to use the term: “two bites of the apple” but that’s just another way of saying ‘we’re gonna use your movie as a Guinea pig’ for our streaming service. Sorry. I begged the studio not to do this. Either circle the wagons and protect it for theatrical or just go all in on streaming. Don’t split hairs. At least the ‘Halloween’ folks were made whole. We got hosed. So yeah…bitter subject. PTSD. Dear studios: stop trying to suck two dicks at the same time. Honor the sanctity of the theatrical experience.”

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