UPDATE 13:29 PM PST: Cineworld-owned UK arthouse chain Picturehouse won’t be showing The Irishman either, the company has confirmed to us. That’s another 26 UK theaters that won’t be showing the anticipated Scorsese film.
EARLIER EXCLUSIVE AT 10:22 AM PST: As anticipated, not everyone is on board with the rollout plan for Martin Scorsese and Netflix’s The Irishman. European cinema chain Vue, which has more than 228 cinemas and 2,000 screens across Europe, has told us it will not be showing the movie due to its curtailed theatrical window. The exhibitor issued the below statement:
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“Despite The Irishman being directed by one of the true giants of cinema, Netflix has chosen not to give this film the full theatrical big screen release it deserves. Our policy is to only show titles launching with a full theatrical release, which is a well-known industry practice that creates and profiles cultural blockbusters, provides a more engaged and immersive experience for audiences and showcases exceptional content the way it was intended to be shown and enjoyed.”
Vue operates in UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Italy, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania and Taiwan.
We’re waiting to hear back from other leading Euro chains such as Cineworld and Odeon as to whether they’ll show the film. Given that the former owns Regal (which won’t show it) and the latter is owned by AMC (which won’t show it) it seems logical that neither will host the movie. We also have word out to UK arthouse network Picturehouse. UK boutique chain Curzon will likely show the film as it has given many Netflix movies a short run in the past.
The Irishman will mark Netflix’s most ambitious theatrical rollout for one of its original productions and the service has been working hard to win over exhibitors in recent months. The film will have a 27-day theatrical window from November 1 in U.S. before it makes its streaming service bow November 27. In the UK, the movie is due to launch on November 8.
It may prove trickier than many fans would like to find a multiplex showing the film. In the U.S., major movie chains including AMC, Cineplex, Regal and Cinemark won’t show the movie. Netflix will be relying on smaller indie chains for penetration. It could be a similar story in Europe.
Anticipated crime-epic The Irishman tells a sprawling story that culminates in the murder of Teamster boss Jimmy Hoffa — played by Al Pacino — as seen through the eyes of WWII vet Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro), a hustler and hitman who claims he ended Hoffa’s life on orders of mob boss Russell Bufalino (Joe Pesci). Hoffa’s body has never been found and Sheeran’s admission is one of numerous theories of the union boss’s demise.