‘Downton Abbey’ Was a Hit, So Why Isn’t ‘El Camino’ In Theaters Nationwide, Too?

There’s a reason why Netflix is treating its “Breaking Bad” movie like a “television event,” not a theatrical one

For hardcore “Downton Abbey” fans, a movie continuing the soapy lives of the residents and servants of Downton was an event not to be missed. The film’s $31 million opening — a record for Focus Features — is notable given the other film adaptation of a hit TV series coming this week but getting only a very limited theatrical release.

That film is “El Camino,” Netflix’s continuation of “Breaking Bad” that shows what happened to Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) after the AMC drama’s series finale, which ended with Walter White’s death and Pinkman escaping captivity. The plans to make such a film had been rumored for months, if not years, and the announcement of the film’s October 11 release date sent fans into a frenzy. In the first 24 hours since first airing during the commercials of the Emmys, the new teaser was watched over 2 million times on Netflix’s YouTube channel.

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Jeremy Fuster

Jeremy Fuster

Box Office Reporter • jeremy.fuster@thewrap.com

Tim Baysinger

Tim Baysinger

TV Reporter • tim.baysinger@thewrap.com • Twitter: @tim_bays