Is John Krasinski suing Paramount over ‘A Quiet Place Part 2’?
Paramount Pictures could be facing a major problem with the release of A Quiet Place Part 2. It’s not the first for the studio, or the film, which was originally scheduled to be released last year. On March 8th, 2020, Paramount actually premiered the film in New York. Then the pandemic forced theaters to close their doors, and Paramount pushed back the film’s release. Since then, it’s been delayed three more times.
Now the film studio is facing a new dilemma. As more & more studios are premiering new releases on their own streaming services, Paramount has felt pressure to do the same. The studio has previously sold movies, like Coming 2 America and The Trial of the Chicago 7, to streaming services, but they’d held back on doing so with A Quiet Place Part 2, expecting it to bring in big money at the box office.
Now, Paramount is cutting the theatrical run of A Quiet Place Part 2 in half. After only a forty-five-day run in theaters, the studio will move the film to their exclusive streaming platform, Paramount+. The move could result in a lawsuit from two of the studio’s biggest stars.
John Krasinski and Emily Blunt created and starred in 2018’s A Quiet Place. Krasinski wrote & directed the sequel, and Blunt stars in the leading role. The couple has a contract with Paramount Pictures guaranteeing they’ll receive a percentage of the film’s box office earnings.
Now that Paramount is shortening the theatrical run of A Quiet Place Part 2, Krasinski & Blunt could take a massive hit to their earnings. The couple has said they’re concerned some fans will skip going to the theater altogether since the film will quickly be available for them to stream at home.
A Quiet Place earned well over $300 million at the box office. In the current environment, even a ninety-day theatrical run for A Quiet Place Part 2 would struggle to earn that amount of money. A shorter run means more people would have to pack themselves into theaters to see the film. Even with pandemic restrictions slowly loosening across the country, that seems unlikely.
Handling streaming releases
Other studios have gone through similar struggles in the past. When Netflix produces films, they only occasionally have limited theatrical runs. Since Netflix doesn’t have large box office earnings to offer their talent, they pay actors, directors, and others working on the film more money upfront.
Warner Bros. announced it would release its entire 2021 slate of films simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max. Initially, actors & filmmakers attached to the projects were outraged. Warner Bros. calmed their concerns by compensating their talent for the lost box office income.
This will likely be a continuing problem for film studios everywhere. Theaters have always played a huge role in how actors and filmmakers get paid for their work in movies. Now that fewer people than ever are turning up at theaters, and more films are coming to streaming platforms, studios will have to adjust their compensation plans.
Representatives for Krasinski & Blunt, along with other producers attached to A Quiet Place Part 2, are currently in discussions with Paramount Pictures. They’re seeking compensation for lost box office revenue, similar to what Warner Bros. paid its talent. So far, the studio has denied their request.
ViacomCBS owns Paramount Pictures, and they have no legal obligation to pay any additional money after shortening the theatrical run for A Quiet Place Part 2. It would likely benefit the studio to keep everyone happy, but how that translates to dollars and cents remains to be seen.
No one is suing Paramount currently, but that option remains on the table. However as this dispute plays out, it will almost certainly impact how other studios make the transition to having more direct-to-streaming releases.