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As movie theaters close around the country due to the coronavirus pandemic, Sony is the latest studio to make a theatrical release available early digitally. Bloodshot, the new Vin Diesel fim from Sony’s Columbia Pictures, will be available for digital purchase Tuesday.
“Sony Pictures is firmly committed to theatrical exhibition and we support windowing,” Sony Pictures chairman Tom Rothman said Wednesday in a statement. “This is a unique and exceedingly rare circumstance where theaters have been required to close nationwide for the greater good and Bloodshot is abruptly unavailable in any medium. Audiences will now have the chance to own Bloodshot right away and see it at home, where we are all spending more time. We are confident that — like other businesses hit hard by the virus — movie theaters will bounce back strongly, and we will be there to support them.”
Bloodshot opened last Friday, during a weekend that saw the overall box office fall to a 20-year low due to audience concerns over the coronavirus. The pic, which bowed in second place with an estimated $9.3 million, is based on the Valiant Entertainment comic book and centers on a soldier (Diesel) who is manipulated into carrying out a series of assassinations and who is powered by nanotechnology in his bloodstream.
Sony’s Bloodshot digital move comes after NBCUniversal announced Monday that it would be breaking the window between theatrical and home entertainment, with recent Universal releases including The Invisible Man, Emma and The Hunt being made available digitally for 48-hour rental periods as early as this Friday. Universal’s Trolls World Tour, due out April 10, will be available digitally that day, as well as in theaters that may remain open on that date.
The coronavirus pandemic has seen studios stop production on numerous films and remove tentpoles from their calendars left and right. The nationwide shutdown of nearly all cinemas could last at least six to 12 weeks.
March 18, 2:39 p.m. A previous version incorrectly stated where Bloodshot ranked in its opening weekend at the box office.
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