Strike-Related Film Slate Changes Could Result in Unexpected 2024 Imax Releases, CEO Says

Paramount pushed “Mission: Impossible 8” to 2025, opening up a prime summer window for Imax exhibition

imax theater
imax theater

Imax is undeterred by potential delays in the 2024 film slate due to the ongoing strikes, pointing to the opportunity to exhibit different films in the premium large format should scheduled blockbusters pivot.

“We anticipate that there will be some movement in 2024 release dates due to the impact of the strikes,” Imax CEO Richard Gelfond said during the company’s third-quarter earnings call. “Given the strength of our performance this year, we believe there is upside for Imax.”

The CEO added that movement in the slate “could create space for us to release films we currently cannot,” noting that the delay of “Dune 2” allowed for Imax to exhibit “The Marvels” and “The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes” in 2023.

Concert films “Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour,” Beyonce’s “Renaissance” and Talking Heads’ re-release “Stop Making Sense” were all unexpected releases in 2023, as were Apple’s epics “Killers of the Flower Moon” and “Napoleon,” all of which landed Imax exhibition and are boosting (or expected to boost) the company’s revenue.

While the 2024 Imax slate includes Marvel’s “Captain America: Brave New World” in May, the film (and others) could be pushed due to strike-related delays, making room for other films to be exhibited instead. Gelfond clarified that when a film is moved off of its original release date, that date goes “up for grabs” for other studios to make a deal with Imax to exhibit their film instead.

Just this week, Paramount pushed “Mission: Impossible 8” – which was slated for release in June 2024 – to May 2025, opening up a prime summer window next year.

“Dune: Part Two,” which is completed, is slated to be released in March and Gelfond said Denis Villeneuve’s sequel will anchor the company’s first quarter box office after being pushed from its October 2023 release.

Warner Bros. opted to push the film to ensure its actors would be available to promote it, as the SAG-AFTRA strike is still ongoing, but the delay then opened the door for Taylor Swift’s concert film to swoop in and take Imax screens. Villeneuve and Oscar-winning cinematographer Greig Fraser shot the follow-up entirely with Imax cameras.

For all of TheWrap’s Hollywood strike coverage, click here.


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