See a Netflix movie at the theater? This has so far been impossible in France because of the law on the chronology of the media which gives cinemas the first scoop on new products, paying streaming platforms having to wait 36 months to offer them to their subscribers.
While this deadline is about to be renegotiated, the Californian company may have gone a little fast in approaching several art and essay rooms, including the MK2 and Utopia networks, in order to organize before Christmas a festival offering several of his original films, already online or to come.
The anger of distributors and operators
This project, unveiled at the beginning of the week by French Film, made cinema distributors leap when attendance floundered, especially since the introduction of the health pass. If Hollywood blockbusters like To die can wait Where Dune recorded good scores, independent films, French and foreign, are indeed lagging behind.
“Such an initiative around Netflix productions would deprive these films of screenings and theaters when they need them most.“, reacted for its part the National Federation of French Cinemas (FNCF).”The platform’s marketing campaign would also eclipse the release of these films.“.
Several unreleased films on the platform
Obviously anxious not to alienate the profession, the French management of the platform has revised its ambitions downwards. This Thursday, she announced the holding from December 7 to 14 of the “Netflix Film Club”, a screening cycle to be held at the Cinémathèque française in Paris and at the Lumière Institute in Lyon.
On the program, several films that will already be available on this date on the platform: Pieces of a Woman de Kornél Mundruczó, Malcolm & Marie by Sam Levinson, The Harder They Fall by Jeymes Samuel, The Power of the Dog the Jane Campion, The Guilty Antoine Fuqua and Chiaroscuro de Rebecca Hall.
The Netflix Film Club will also offer three unreleased films: Don’t Look Up: Cosmic Denial Adam McKay with Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence at the head of a maddening star cast, God’s hand of the Italian Paolo Sorrentino et The Lost Daughter, the debut film by American actress Maggie Gyllenhaal.
The choice of these two non-commercial institutions is not trivial since it exempts Netflix from asking the authorities for an exemption from the media chronology. It must also be said that the platform is already working hand in hand with these two places. Last spring, it notably announced its participation, alongside the Cinémathèque française, in financing the reconstitution of the Napoleon by Abel Gance, a silent film classic released in 1927.
Netflix absorbs nearly a quarter of internet traffic in France
It is moreover in exchange for a contribution to the financing of French cinema that Netflix, like other paid streaming platforms, is preparing to negotiate a shortening of the time between online and theatrical release, under the terms of the application of a European directive dating from 2018.
The subject creates strong tensions within the profession since for many distributors and exhibitors, it is out of the question that the platforms can perform simultaneous theatrical and streaming releases, as is the case in the United States.
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