Details are already known about the landing in Europe of HBO Max, the WarnerMedia platform, would increasingly be a competitor in the streaming wars. During the second quarter of 2021, its increase in subscribers exceeded analyst expectations and now they expect to reach 70-73 million globally by the end of this year. Much of that growth (quite a turnaround after faltering starts) has been at the expense of movie theaters: as is well known, Warner Bros. movie releases, including ‘blockbusters’ like’ Wonder Woman 1984 ‘and’ Godzilla vs. . Kong ‘, have premiered simultaneously on HBO Max in USA throughout this year.
The virtual presentation of HBO Max in Europe, exactly three weeks before its launch (October 26), included an important news in this regard: next year, Warner’s new films will be able to be seen in Spain on the platform only six weeks after going through theaters. Hard blow for theaters (although for certain event films the public, surely, will not want to wait) and also for the intermediaries of the PVOD (Premium Video On Demand). In Warner’s cinematic menu for 2022 are ‘The Batman’ (with Robert Pattinson as the new batman), the third part of ‘Fantastic beasts and where to find them’, the musical biopic of Elvis that Baz Luhrmann prepares or the new version of ‘ Salem’s Lot ‘.
To the recent movie parade We must add a, in principle, a rich catalog collection that will include from classics such as ‘The Wizard of Oz’, ‘Casablanca’ and ‘Singing in the rain’ to the entirety of the ‘Harry Potter’ franchise or the films of the Extended Universe of DC.
Carrie Bradshaw returns in December
But if there is something we associate with the HBO brand, it is its series legacy, something in which HBO Max will continue to excel. Under the leadership of content manager Casey Bloys, the larger quantity has not really meant a decrease in quality: original Max series such as ‘Hacks’ (still unreleased in Spain), ‘The flight attendant’ and even the one initially viewed with suspicion ‘Love life’ (whose second season will star the great William Jackson Harper) have received critical acclaim or award nominations. There are also expectations around the originals developed locally; in the case of Spain, the imminent national product includes ‘Todo lo otro’, ‘Venga Juan’ and ‘¡García!’.
The biggest news of the virtual event were a couple of dates: ‘And just like that…’, the late sequel to ‘Sex and the City’, will arrive in December, and a month later it will be the turn of ‘The Peacemaker’, immersion in the origins of the character played by John Cena in the last ‘The Suicide Squad’, with the person in charge of that, James Gunn, as producer. It was also possible to see a promising first ‘teaser’ of ‘The House of the Dragon’, an expansion of the ‘Game of Thrones’ universe that will arrive in 2022. For those nostalgic for the two thousand, the great news is, however, the announced incorporation of the classic ‘teen’ ‘OC’.
Best platform and competitive prices
The event also reported on technical developments. Cristina Sulebakk, CEO of HBO Max for EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), spoke of a “product that will improve viewing“(although the magic word” 4K “was not pronounced), an application that is easier to locate and the possibility of personalizing the user experience or creating profiles for children according to age.
As for prices, HBO users (whose platform will become HBO Max) should not start to tremble: the price remains as it has been until now: 8.99 euros per month. Those who decide to sign up now, will also have the possibility of paying an annual fee that represents a saving of more than 30%.
After this first European landing, which also includes several Nordic countries and Andorra, HBO Max will expand to Central and Eastern Europe and Portugal in 2022. Its attack and invasion plan is to reach 190 territories in 2026.