When Manhattan’s Paris Theatre closed its doors in August, it was a huge loss for the New York movie-going community. The beloved theater was the last prestige single-screen movie house in the city. But while we may not always have Paris, Netflix ensures that we’ll have it for at least a couple more weeks this November. Netflix is setting a Marriage Story theatrical release in New York at the Paris Theatre starting November 6, for a limited run. But while there is no word on whether Netflix intends to keep the theater open, could this mark a future investment for the streaming giant?
Netflix announced that it is setting the theatrical engagements for Noah Baumbach‘s divorce drama Marriage Story in Los Angeles and New York starting November 6, 2019 with additional releases in the U.S. and internationally set to begin November 15. The film is set to play at The Landmark and The Vista in LA, and the IFC Film Center, Landmark 57th West, and Nitehawk Prospect Park in New York. But most significantly is the fourth New York venue for Marriage Story: the recently-shuttered Paris Theatre.
Netflix is re-opening the doors of New York’s last single-screen theater, which closed this past summer. While Netflix would not comment beyond confirming that Marriage Story would play at the theater for a limited run, it could be an indication that Netflix is looking into the brick-and-mortar business. The streaming giant has had its run-ins with film festivals and big theater chains, which have taken issue with the company’s disruption of the movie industry. But Netflix has set its eyes on those distinguished Academy Awards, partnering up with esteemed auteurs like Martin Scorsese and Alfonso Cuaron and launching costly awards campaigns to win that coveted Best Picture Oscar. That means Netflix has had to play ball by releasing some of those films in theaters, which they’ve had trouble doing outside of renting an entire movie house. But could Netflix be looking into buying its own movie theaters, as reports suggested as far back as last year? Perhaps the Paris Theatre could be a test run of that.
The Paris Theatre shuttered in August when the City Cinemas lease with real estate magnate Robert Solow expired, according to Deadline. The outlet reported that Netflix was one of the companies bidding for that lease from the Solow family, but the theater was closed before a deal could be made. However, with the news that Netflix is temporarily re-opening the theater for the Marriage Story theatrical release, perhaps it could turn into something more permanent.
It would certainly be a win-win for Netflix: the streaming giant would have a theater where it could premiere its Oscar contenders for its two-week qualifying awards run without having to wrangle with movie chains, and a New York movie landmark could be saved. The service is reportedly making a deal to do the same with the venerated Egyptian Theatre in L.A., which would give Netflix two theaters in prime locations for awards season. Maybe we’ll always have Paris (Theatre) after all.
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