Rotten Tomatoes is withholding the score for “Justice League” until Thursday — that’s one day before the film hits theaters.
However, the film’s review embargo is still set for Tuesday at 11:50 p.m. PST.
An individual with knowledge told TheWrap that Warner Bros. had no influence on the decision given that the two entities operate separately. WB has an ownership stake in Fandango, Rotten Tomatoes’ parent company.
A spokesperson for Rotten Tomatoes told TheWrap that each week, the Rotten Tomatoes team selects a movie or TV show to reveal the Tomatometer on “See It/Skip It,” a new FB Watch show that airs every Thursday at 12:01 a.m. EST/Wednesday, 9:01 p.m. PT. Erik Davis, Fandango’s managing editor, took to Twitter to corroborate that, writing that “it’s being held to debut on the new FB show, which airs the same time every week.”
And just because the Rotten Tomatoes score won’t show up until Thursday, doesn’t mean fans won’t be able to read the reviews on the website once the embargo lifts.
It’s important to note that Rotten Tomatoes did the same with “A Bad Moms Christmas” two weeks ago. Forbes’ Scott Mendelson wrote an article in which he stated that the new FB Live show reveals the Tomatometer score on the webcast itself. “Bad Moms Christmas” was chosen because the embargo lifted essentially 15 hours before the broadcast. And STX had nothing to do with the review delay, the article noted.
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The spokesperson told TheWrap the team chose “Justice League” given fans’ interest and that the reveal would align with the lift of the review embargo.
“Thus far this does not appear to be an evil plot between Hollywood and Rotten Tomatoes, nor does it appear to be the studios’ reaction to a summer where the review site seemed to have a relative impact on the performance of critically panned biggies,” Mendelson wrote. “If Rotten Tomatoes were really to do this kind of site-wide hide-and-seek, it would be playing into the worst stereotypes about what the site represents and essentially daring folks to never actually visit the site itself or read any of the various reviews.”
However, some critics are wary that a film’s Tomatometer score only being revealed shortly before it hits theaters might mean the film is bad. According to a Mashable report, where two reporters compiled data from 27 major wide releases of 2017, “Movies whose reviews publish well in advance have significantly higher Rotten Tomatoes scores than those posted on shorter windows, and points between tend to correspond on a sliding scale.”
Tune in to “See It/Skip It” on Thursday or read TheWrap’s “Justice League” review when it publishes tonight.