Warner Bros has revealed that nearly one-in-two HBO Max subscribers tuned in to the streaming debut of Wonder Woman 1984 on Christmas Day alongside the cinema release.
The figures will surely vindicate the studio’s highly significant decision to give a streaming release alongside the cinemas that took in a pandemic-high of $16.7 million opening weekend in the US.
The company also said “millions” of subscribers, who had access to HBO Max via “cable, wireless, or other partner services”, watched the long-awaited blockbuster, tripling the usual viewing hours on a standard day.
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“Wonder Woman 1984 broke records and exceeded our expectations across all of our key viewing and subscriber metrics in its first 24 hours on the service, and the interest and momentum we’re seeing indicates this will likely continue well beyond the weekend,” said Andy Forssell, Executive Vice President and General Manager, WarnerMedia Direct-to-Consumer. “During these very difficult times, it was nice to give families the option of enjoying this uplifting film at home, where theater viewing wasn’t an option.”
The success of the streaming launch has convinced Warner Bros. to “fast-track” the production of a third film in the series, which has Patti Jenkins signed on to direct the film. Naturally, Gal Gadot will star in the title role for Wonder Woman 3.
“As fans around the world continue to embrace Diana Prince, driving the strong opening weekend performance of Wonder Woman 1984, we are excited to be able continue her story with our real life Wonder Women – Gal and Patty – who will return to conclude the long-planned theatrical trilogy,” said Toby Emmerich, Chairman, Warner Bros. Pictures Group.
While the press release announcing the fast-tracked third film will please hardcore fans of the series, the response to Wonder Woman 1984 hasn’t been universally acclaimed. While the film has a CinemaScore of B+, Rotten Tomatoes currently has it at only 65%, with loads of complaints from viewers about the overly long run time of 151 mins.