Perhaps Orion has decided to face facts– the coronavirus isn’t going anywhere. (Or rather, it’s going everywhere.) The studio has announced a “select theatrical-PVOD strategy” for ‘Bill & Ted Face the Music’. The comedy will open in whatever theaters are open on Tuesday, September 1, and will be released as a PVOD the same day, so fans have the option of going to a cinema, if there is one open near them, or they can pay a premium price to rent ‘Bill & Ted’ for a limited time.
Alex Winter (Bill) made the announcement via Twitter. He also shared a new trailer:
The wait is over! @BillandTed3 will be released in the U.S. on September 1st on video-on-demand and in select theaters!
— Alex Winter 😷 (@Winter) July 23, 2020
There are no specific details, but generally speaking, PVODs are about $20 for 48 hours. When ‘SCOOB!’ came out, it cost $20 to rent for 48 hours, or $24.99, to buy and keep forever. I’m not sure why anyone would pick the rental option.
So far, the PVOD release plan has proven successful for movies like ‘The Invisible Man’ and ‘Birds of Prey’, and even more so for ‘Trolls World Tour’, a family sequel that never got to open in theaters.
This pandemic is unprecedented so studios are struggling to figure out what to do with its big releases that cost hundreds of millions to make. Even though some movies have proven successful as PVODs, they aren’t raking in the hundreds of millions that they would have made in theaters. ‘Bill & Ted’ is a more modest release, so it probably doesn’t need to make that much to break even or turn a profit.
Orion was reportedly determined that the movie open everywhere at the same time. Currently, Warner Bros. has indicated that it will not do that with ‘Tenet’ and will only open it in theaters in places where the coronavirus is under control. That means, NOT in the US. (Hello, piracy!)
Dean Parisot (‘Galaxy Quest’) directed ‘Bill & Ted Face the Music’, which welcomes back original stars Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves. Also returning from the original films are William Sadler as Death, Hal Landon Jr. as Ted’s father, Chet Logan, and Amy Stoch as Chet’s wife, Missy. New faces include Samara Weaving as Bill’s daughter Thea, Brigette Lundy-Payne as Ted’s daughter Billie, Beck Bennett as Ted’s brother, Deacon, Erinn Hayes as Ted’s wife, Princess Elizabeth, Jayma Mays as Bill’s wife, Princess Joanna, Jillian Bell as couples therapist Dr. Taylor Wood, Anthony Carrigan as the film’s villain (identity unrevealed), Holland Taylor as The Great Leader, “the most powerful person in the universe,” Win Butler as one of the Great Leaders, Kristen Schaal as Kelly, a messenger from the future, and Kid Cudi as himself.
It has also been announced that archival footage of George Carlin as Bill & Ted’s guide and mentor Rufus will be incorporated. (Carlin passed away in 2008.)
Are you going to face ‘Bill & Ted Face the Music’ on September 1?