Netflix at the Movies? Theater Owners Open to Playing the Streaming Giant’s Original Content

by Shelby Scott

Netflix remains a major point of conversation as the streaming giant just lost 200,000 subscribers during its first quarter. More significantly, though, the company continues to lose its grip as one of the most successful platforms in the industry. The iconic movie platform also recently lost a third of its value in the largest one-day stock drop ever. With that in mind, it’s interesting to note that the National Association of Theater Owners (NATO) has opened its arms to Netflix, rather than seizing the opportunity to point to the reliability of brick-and-mortar movie theaters.

Theaters Prove Prominent Amid Recent Netflix Blows

Deemed “the bane of exhibitors” by The Hollywood Reporter, NATO offered to begin airing some Netflix content in the future.

During a Tuesday press conference, NATO President and CEO John Fithian said, “Our door is open for bigger, broader play of Netflix movies if that is a path they want to go down. They’re movie fans like we’re movie fans.”

Netflix has, for the most part, kept its original films separate from the world of classic exhibitors. However, that excludes Cinemark. As per the outlet, the hit original Netflix film “Red Notice,” starring Hollywood icon Dwayne Johnson, aired in Cinemark theaters amid the streaming platform’s original release.

The association’s latest announcement differs drastically from opinions exhibited less than a decade ago. According to Variety, the movie theater owners’ association previously “revolted” at the thought of showing the streaming giant’s original content.

One individual, in particular, that continues to speak out about the downfall of simultaneous releases, however, is Motion Picture Association chairman Charles Rivkin.

Amid Netflix’s misfortunes, Rivkin stated, “I am pleased to announce that simultaneous release is dead as a serious business model.”

The chairman attributed the “death” of simultaneous film releases to increasing threats of piracy.

He further spoke to the enduring prominence of classic movie theaters amid the Netflix disaster. Rivkin stated, “The current box office successes show that moviegoers still enjoy the sanctity and the social headiness of shared space.”

Netflix Making Major Changes Amid Historic Monetary Loss

While streaming has become more popular than ever, Netflix sees scorn from many of its remaining subscribers for multiple reasons. Currently, the company is in the process of various branding transitions. However, we can’t be sure the platform’s updates will help or hinder its largely unfortunate situation.

In a previous report from Variety, Netflix announced its plans to monetize password sharing. For years, the streaming service’s subscribers have been sharing their passwords. This openness has enabled individuals outside the primary account holder’s home access to Netflix content.

Now, that’s all about to change. As per the outlet, the company aims to “convert freeloading” users into subscribers, as members who share their login credentials more freely contribute to the 200,000 subscriber losses it saw during Q1.

Further, the streaming platform aims to add commercials to some of its most popular content, and the company’s remaining users are not happy. In fact, they took to social media to openly express their contempt.

“Dear Netflix,” one user Tweeted, “so you’re thinking about adding commercials due to a downturn in new customers? Well, even More customers will flee Netflix after that change.”