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The latest news on Movies from Business Insider

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    Black Panther

    • There's a reason why "Black Panther" was released in February and not the usual blockbuster-heavy summer or holiday seasons.
    • It's an initiative by the movie industry to spread out its big titles throughout the year.
    • National Association of Theatre Owners president and CEO John Fithian hopes this will start a trend of more blockbusters being released earlier in the year.


    The incredible box-office performance by “Black Panther” is even more impressive because of the time of year it was released.

    The latest Marvel movie took in an estimated $235 million over its four-day holiday opening weekend. That’s the kind of number usually found over the summer blockbuster season. But “Black Panther” did all this over Presidents’ Day weekend in February, which historically has been thought to be a dead time of year in the movie business.

    But for close to a decade, movie theater execs have been trying to get studios to understand that movies can be big box-office earners any time of the year, and asking them to place some of their big budget titles outside of the summer and holiday seasons. And that lobbying has finally begun to bear fruit.

    “We have struggled off and on with the distribution patterns of big movies concentrated on the summer when schools have vacation and the winter holidays, and often those big movies can cannibalize each other because they come right after the other,” John Fithian, president and CEO of National Association of Theatre Owners, told Business Insider. “Strong content can play in any month and can have more room to play in the non-traditional months."

    That’s exactly what happened with “Black Panther.”

    Disney used its marketing muscle, audience love for Marvel titles, and the huge anticipation by the African-American community for an adaptation of this comic book hero to find itself with a record-breaking release over the Presidents’ Day holiday weekend — $201.7 million over three days (fifth best ever all-time) and $235 million over the four-day holiday weekend, shattering the opening weekend record for February and Presidents’ Day weekend.

    “Black Panther” may have finally proven to studio heads that major titles can open with a bang in the early months of the year. But there was a particular trend identified by movie theaters that started the ball rolling.

    January and February have historically been big earning months for movies that opened in December

    Fithian said what really made the studios come around was when the theaters showed the numerous December releases that did incredible ticket sales in January and February.

    “What traditionally happened was that adult-skewed, non-award season movies opened in January and February, but we saw these ticket sales numbers for huge blockbusters from December carrying over to January and February,” said Fithian. “So the argument we gave to the industry was, if people are coming out in huge numbers in January and February, open big movies then.”

    titanic 20th Century FoxLike most things in Hollywood, change happens slowly. December releases that went on to have huge January and February months goes all the way back to 1997’s “Titanic,” which had earned over $400 million domestically by the end of February 1998, and went on to earn a then all-time best $659.3 million domestic lifetime gross.

    It also happened with another James Cameron movie, 2009’s “Avatar.” It earned $706 million by the end of February 2010. That movie would beat “Titanic” to become the biggest domestic earner ever with $760.5 million (“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” beat “Avatar” for the top spot in 2015 with $936.6 million lifetime domestic gross).

    And the early year bump for December releases continues today.

    After playing second fiddle to “The Last Jedi” when it opened a week after the latest “Star Wars” movie last December, Sony’s “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” did incredible business in January 2018. It was the number one movie in the country for most of January, and now in February it's at a $379.6 million domestic total, the second-best domestic earner ever for Sony.

    20th Century Fox's 2016 release of "Deadpool" over Presidents' Day proved the theaters were right and audiences were interested in coming out this time of year. Taking in $132.4 million over three days and $152.1 million over the four-day holiday, "Deadpool" set the opening weekend records for the month and holiday before “Black Panther.” Now the performance by "Panther" again proves that the first two months of the year are fertile ground for the right kind of release.

    Fithian doesn’t believe there will be a glut of big movies opening in January and February in the years to come, but he sees “Black Panther” being a game changer, as studios will be more willing to release blue chip projects earlier in the year.

    Big titles on the horizon for early 2019 include “Glass” — the “Split” / “Unbreakable” sequel by M. Night Shyamalan — coming out in January, and “The Lego Movie 2” opening in February.

    “The industry is certainly moving towards a more balanced release calendar,” Jeff Bock, senior analyst for Exhibitor Relations, told Business Insider. “Old Hollywood adages are being thrown out the window because audiences, no matter what season, have an insatiable appetite for event films — provided they deliver the goods.”

    SEE ALSO: Michael B. Jordan added 15 pounds of muscle after "Creed" to play the villain in "Black Panther"— here's how he did it

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    black panther justice league

    • Marvel's "Black Panther" outgrossed the domestic box office earnings of "Justice League" in just four days.
    • "Black Panther" is estimated to have scored over $235 million at the domestic box office and $404 million worldwide.
    • The Marvel film earned the fifth-highest opening of all time and the third-highest four-day opening in history, according to Box Office Mojo.
    • "Justice League" has grossed just $228.6 million domestically since its release in November 2017.
    • The DCEU film performed significantly better in foreign markets, bringing in a worldwide total of $657.4 million. 

     

    Marvel's "Black Panther" outgrossed the entire domestic run of DC Comics' "Justice League" in just its first four days at the US box office, according to Box Office Mojo

    "Black Panther" crushed box office projections in its four-day opening, raking in an estimated $235 million at the domestic box office and $404 million worldwide.

    According to Box Office Mojo, the Marvel film earned the fifth-highest opening of all time at the US box office and the third-highest four-day opening in history. It was also the highest opening ever for a film released in the month of February.

    "Justice League," on the other hand, has grossed just $228.6 million domestically since its release in November 2017. The DCEU film, which starred Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, and Henry Cavill, performed significantly better in foreign markets. It notched a worldwide total of $657.4 million.

    Where "Justice League" was critically panned upon its release, with a current Rotten Tomatoes score of 40% "Rotten,""Black Panther" has received rave reviews and stands at 97% "Fresh" on the reviews site.

    "Black Panther" has also done well stacked up against other Marvel Cinematic Universe titles, with the best domestic opening weekend of all time (counting its four-day total.)

    SEE ALSO: The February box-office success of 'Black Panther' is a rarity for the movie business — but industry insiders say that's about to change

    Join the conversation about this story »

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    black panther movie

    • A man proposed to his girlfriend right before a screening of Marvel's "Black Panther" Thursday night.
    • He couldn't stick around, though, because he didn't have a ticket.
    • The proposal shows that audiences don't just see "Black Panther" as another movie. It's a celebration.

     

    Right before a screening of "Black Panther" Thursday night at Brooklyn's Alamo Drafthouse theater, someone donned a Black Panther costume, took out a ring, and proposed to his girlfriend.

    The theater erupted in applause. Then he had to leave.

    The man didn't have a ticket, according to Twitter reports, and surprised his girlfriend, who he knew would be at the screening with other friends. But he's still being honored on Twitter.

    America has been treating the release of "Black Panther" like a celebration, as Teen Vogue pointed out, and the Alamo Drafthouse threw a party worthy of it. Before the screening, it hosted a drum performance and had a special menu inspired by pan-African cuisine.

    Black Panther red carpet pre-screening at the Alamo!! Yaaaassss! #wakanda #Brooklyn #Blackpanther #blackisbeautiful #Africa

    A post shared by Love (@ms_love_letta) on Feb 15, 2018 at 4:08pm PST on

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    Chicago

    Winning the best picture Oscar doesn't just signal that a movie is regarded by Hollywood as the top achievement in the medium for the year; it can help cement a movie's status, with past winners that have gone on to become classics like "The Godfather,""Lawrence of Arabia," and "On the Waterfront."

    But the Academy voters don't always get it right. Tucked away in the 89 years of Oscar ceremonies are best picture winners that quickly vanished from the zeitgeist, never to be heard from again. That's often because they weren't as good as originally thought.

    It's probably too early to say which of the nine best picture nominees in 2018 — including odds-on favorites to win like "The Shape of Water" and "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri"— will live on in our memories, but here's hoping the Academy doesn't screw this one up when the Oscars air March 4.

    Here we look back on the 10 most disappointing best picture winners and choose the nominees that should have won:

    SEE ALSO: 26 stars who shockingly still don't have Oscars

    10. "Around the World in 80 Days" (1956)

    Based on the Jules Verne novel, this film used all of Hollywood's resources (a $6 million budget in the 1950s was far from cheap) to create a sprawling look at the world, but the story of a super-rich English gentleman Phileas Fogg (David Niven) who attempts to win his wager to navigate the globe is silly and far from memorable. 



    SHOULD HAVE WON: "The Ten Commandments"

    Cecil B. DeMille's final directing effort still holds strong today. With its all-star cast, particularly the incredible performance by Charlton Heston as Moses (he didn't even get an Oscar nomination for the role), and its remarkable effects for that era, it's a movie that should have been recognized with the top prize.  



    9. "Ordinary People" (1980)

    The late 1970s and early 1980s were when the melodrama was at its zenith in movie theaters, and "Ordinary People" came around at the perfect time. The film didn't just win best picture — it also achieved best director for Robert Redford and best actor for Timothy Hutton. Granted, the film has explosive performances in it, but there needs to be more than great acting to win best picture.



    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    If you've watched any of the 2018 Oscar nominees for Best Picture, you probably noticed something strange. A lot of the actors cross over into one of the other films. We decided to take a deeper dive into the connections and see if we could connect all 9 films together six-degrees-of-Kevin-Bacon-style.  Here's what we found. Following is a transcript of the video.

    Chris Snyder: If you've seen any of the Best Picture nominees for 2018, you might have noticed something unusual.

    A lot of the actors cross over into some of the other films.

    Some of them are obvious, and some of them are a little more obscure. So this got us thinking ... how deep does this go?

    There are 9 nominees for Best Picture in 2018.

    We connected each Best Picture nominee with the actors they have in common. Here's how we did it.

    Warning: Some spoilers if you haven't seen these movies yet.

    Let's start with the obvious ones.

    Timothée Chalamet appears in "Lady Bird" as Saoirse Ronan's love interest Kyle. He also stars in "Call Me By Your Name" as Elio.

    In "Call Me By Your Name" Michael Stuhlbarg plays Elio's father. Stuhlbarg is also in two other Best Picture nominees. He plays Dr. Robert Hoffstetler in "The Shape of Water." And he is New York Times editor Abe Rosenthal in "The Post."

    Through those two alone we have four of the films covered. Now let's take another look at "Lady Bird." Lady Bird's father Larry is played by Tracy Letts, who also plays Fritz Beebe in "The Post."

    Lady Bird's other love interest Danny is played by Lucas Hedges. Hedges also stars in "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" as Mildred's son Robbie.

    Kathryn Newton plays Mildred's dead daughter Angela.

    She also happens to be in "Lady Bird," playing the minor role of Darlene.

    Also in "Three Billboards" is Caleb Landry Jones, who plays Red Welby. He's the guy who Mildred pays to put up the billboards. He might look familiar, because he's also in "Get Out." Where he plays Rose's violent brother Jeremy.

    Also in "Get Out" is Bradley Whitford. He appears in "The Post" as the fictional character Arthur Parsons.

    Alright, so now we have 6 of the films on the board. That just leaves"Dunkirk,""Darkest Hour," and "Phantom Thread."   

    Here's where things got a bit tricky.

    An actor named Davey Jones plays a soldier in both "Dunkirk" and "Darkest Hour." and " Yeah, it's a smaller role, but it's still a connection.

    Two other actors also have minor roles in both "Dunkirk" and "Darkest Hour." Also in "Darkest Hour" is an actor named Cris Harris, who plays a Downing Street KB. Cris Harris happens to also play a musician in "Phantom Thread."

    So now we've connected these 3 movies together, but we're still missing a connection to the first 6. This is where things got even trickier.

    We combed through IMDB searching for any actor that might be the missing link. Just when we thought it wasn't possible, we found her: Tracey Ruggiero.

    Tracey Ruggiero: Whenever you're on sets like that, you definitely have a feeling that it's going to be something big.

    Snyder: Tracey is a stunt performer who had roles in both "Dunkirk" and "The Post." Yes, there were stunts in "The Post."

    Ruggiero: So in "The Post" there was a protest scene. I was like running behind the car. I know that Meryl was in the car, and she was looking out the back as Tim Hanks was walking down the street, and so I knew like I was running through that scene a bunch.

    In "Dunkirk," I played a nurse in the big boat scene, and actually like stunt nurse is what she was called because I was a stunt performer. Literally, you felt like you were drowning. It really felt like the boat was getting bombed. 

    It's quite an honor to just have been, just to even work a day on any of those movies. A movie that Steven Spielberg directs or Christopher Nolan directs.

    Snyder: So there you go — all 9 films connected, Six-Degrees-of-Kevin-Bacon style, minus Kevin Bacon.

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    Wesley SNipes

    • Marvel's "Black Panther" is a box-office hit, breaking records and exceeding expectations.
    • But Wesley Snipes almost played the character in a movie adaptation in 1992.
    • Snipes told Variety that the project never became reality because "there were no templates for it" at the time.

     

    Wesley Snipes became a superhero of sorts in the Blade trilogy of films, but before that, he was circling a "Black Panther" movie.

    This weekend Marvel's "Black Panther" movie, starring Chadwick Boseman as the title character, broke box-office records on its way to one of the best openings of all time. It's now the highest grossing February release of all time, and the third best opening weekend ever (if you count the four-day holiday).

    But back in 1992, Snipes was on track to star as Black Panther, according to an interview with Variety.

    "I had a good agent at the time who was sensitive to some of the artistic concerns that I had," Snipes told Variety. "We thought it would be very cool and atypical for a Marvel comic-book character. Something that would be appeal to white people, black people, Asian people, and have some martial arts in it and expose the world of Africa in a way that most people were unfamiliar with and very contrary to the stereotypes that are projected about the continent."

    Snipes said he studied the African diaspora, which attracted him to Wakanda, the fictional African nation that Black Panther is king of.

    "When I read 'Black Panther' [comic books] and they had Wakanda on there, it immediately triggered those memories of studying the ancient empires lost in history," Snipes said. "The coolest part of it is Wakanda was such a technologically advanced country that blended technology and ancient times quite effectively."

    Snipes said three different scripts were written but none came to fruition. At the time, he said, "there were no templates for it," and he was "quite busy."

    Six years later, though, in 1998, Snipes got the chance to play another Marvel character: Blade, the half-man, half-vampire mercenary.

    SEE ALSO: 'Black Panther' has made more money in the US than 'Justice League' after just 4 days

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    black panther

    • The official box office numbers are in and "Black Panther" had the second-best four-day opening weekend of all time with $242 million domestically.
    • That beats the opening by "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" ($241.5 million).


    The official box office numbers are in, and "Black Panther" performed well beyond any industry projections.

    The final numbers for the Presidents' Day holiday weekend came out Tuesday and the latest Marvel movie took in $242 million over the four days at the domestic box office, according to The Hollywood Reporter.  

    That puts the movie in second place for best-ever four-day openings at the box office, passing "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" ($241.5 million).

    "Black Panther" also took out the $40.1 million "The Force Awakens" had as the biggest Monday earner on record with $40.2 million.

    The movie's three-day gross of $201.7 million places it as the fifth best all time, beating out "Avengers: Age of Ultron" ($191.2 million).

    More to come...

    SEE ALSO: Michael B. Jordan added 15 pounds of muscle after "Creed" to play the villain in "Black Panther"— here's how he did it

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: You can connect all 9 Best Picture Oscar nominees with actors they have in common — here's how


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    Black Panther

    "Black Panther" had a massive opening weekend at the box office taking in over $201.8 million over Presidents' Day weekend

    Not only did that number give it the best February opening at theaters ever, but the movie following T'Challa's reign over the fictional country of Wakanda also became one of the largest box-office openings of all time. 

    That means it joins the ranks of the most successful movies of all time, including "Twilight," Batman, and a lot of other Marvel movies.

    INSIDER looked at how "Black Panther" compares to the movies with the highest-grossing opening weekends ever, according to BoxOfficeMojo. Here are the top movies people most wanted to see.

    25. "Suicide Squad" (2016)

    Synopsis"A secret government agency recruits some of the most dangerous incarcerated super-villains to form a defensive task force. Their first mission: save the world from the apocalypse."

    Opening weekend$133.7 million
    Worldwide gross: $746.9 million



    24. "Finding Dory" (2016)

    Synopsis"The friendly but forgetful blue tang fish, Dory, begins a search for her long-lost parents, and everyone learns a few things about the real meaning of family along the way."

    Opening weekend$135.1 million
    Worldwide gross$1 billion



    23. "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" (2006)

    Synopsis"Jack Sparrow races to recover the heart of Davy Jones to avoid enslaving his soul to Jones' service, as other friends and foes seek the heart for their own agenda as well."

    Opening weekend$135.6 million
    Worldwide gross$1.1 billion



    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    taylor swift joe alwyn

    • Taylor Swift is dating Joe Alwyn.
    • Like Swift, he maintains a relatively private and mysterious public persona, giving few interviews.
    • He's an actor who got his big break with 2016's "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk" and has a growing career as a model.

     

    Taylor Swift's current boyfriend and likely muse is Joe Alwyn, an actor and model.

    The two have been dating since at least fall of 2016, shortly after Swift broke up with her previous boyfriend, Tom Hiddleston, but the precise timing is still uncertain.

    Like Swift, Alwyn is in tight control of his media persona. He's given hardly any interviews in the past year and remains a relatively obscure — and promising — actor.

    So what do we know about Joe Alwyn? Not much. Here are seven key things to understand about him.

    1. He got his big acting break with "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk."

    Alwyn acted in London's theater scene for a few years before starring in Ang Lee's 2016 follow-up to "Life of Pi." As a war satire, it was set up to be an Oscar contender, but all of that changed when critics actually watched it.

    Joe Alwyn sense of an ending red carpet

    Nonetheless, Alwyn's performance was praised. He went on to have a role on "The Sense of an Ending," released in 2017 to good reviews. He's set to have small roles in four more movies this year.

    2. Alwyn lives a low-key life.

    Before the news broke that he was dating Taylor Swift, Alwyn had just 3,000 Twitter followers, which he used only to promote "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk." He doesn't use Instagram at all. Until late last year, he was living at home with his parents. Swift reportedly went on dates with him while wearing a wig to protect their privacy. 

    3. His parents taught him to love movies.

    Alwyn's father is a documentary filmmaker who made films in "crisis zones,"as Alwyn described. His mother is a psychotherapist. Both of them introduced him to the world of movies and theater.

    "I've always grown up with [my father] showing me films and I’ve always loved going to the cinema,"Alwyn told People. "And my mum had taken me to the theater a lot, so I always wanted to be a part of that world in some way but didn’t quite know how or how to go about it."

    joe alwyn new york film festival

    In high school, Alwyn dabbled in theater, and then studied drama in college. Afterwards, he went to the Royal Central School of Speech & Drama for three years to study acting.

    4. Some songs in "Reputation" might be about him.

    As long as Taylor Swift has been writing love songs, her fans have scrutinized them to figure out which real-life men they might be about.

    Because Swift is dating Alwyn right now, her fans have peered into the lyrics of her songs from her last album, "Reputation" to figure out whether they're about him.

    joe alwyn taiwan

    For "Gorgeous," there are some clues that the song may be about her love for his looks, but the details don't totally line up with reality.

    And for "Call It What You Want," it's also possible that the song is about their relationship, but the precise meanings are still obscure.

    5. Ed Sheeran approves.

    In an October interview, Sheeran, one of Swift's longtime friends and artistic collaborators, said Alwyn was a good guy.

    "He's really nice. Really, really friendly, really good dude,"Sheeran said. "They are very much in love, they have quite a low-key relationship, which Taylor likes. It's normal, and no one really knows about it right now."

    Ed Sheeran Taylor Swift

    Sheeran said their relationship is profoundly normal.

    "They just work out, watch movies together and invite friends over," Sheeran said. "Taylor loves to cook and bake for him. They are still taking it slow."

    The couple also attended Sheeran's Jingle Ball performance in December, one of their last public appearances together.

    6. Prada made him the face of its spring and summer 2018 menswear collection.

    The actor modeled for the fashion brand's menswear line.

    7. He did a modeling photo shoot with Gigi Hadid.

    Alwyn's Prada campaign isn't his first modeling gig. For the September 2016 issue of Vogue, Alwyn modeled with Swift's friend Gigi Hadid. Some Swift fans theorize that the couple met through the Hadid connection.

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    last men in aleppo grasshopper films final

    • Kareem Abeed, Syrian producer of the Oscar-nominated documentary "Last Men in Aleppo," will not be able to attend the Academy Awards because his visa application was rejected.
    • The documentary looks at a volunteer group called The White Helmets that rescues victims buried in rubble following bombings in Aleppo during the Syrian civil war.
    • Mahmoud Al-Hatter, a co-founder of The White Helmets who is featured in the movie, also cannot attend the Oscars because the Syrian government would not allow him to apply for a passport.


    Syrian film producer Kareem Abeed will not be allowed to attend the Academy Awards to support his movie, "Last Men in Aleppo," as his visa application was officially denied by the US government.

    According to The Wrap, Abeed received word he was "found ineligible for a visa under Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.” Abeed's rejection comes in the wake of President Trump's travel ban, which puts restrictions on Syria, as well as North Korea, Iran, Chad, Libya, Venezuela, and Yemen.

    “It’s difficult to understand how such a decision can be justified," Ryan Krivoshey, the president of the movie's US distributor Grasshopper Film, told Business Insider in a statement. "The filmmakers have risked their lives to show the world what is happening in their homeland. We should be honoring their bravery and courage, not denying them entry to our country."

    "Last Men in Aleppo" is a documentary that looks at volunteers of The White Helmets, the Syrian rescue team that saves victims buried in rubble following bombings in Aleppo during the Syrian civil war.

    “Kareem is an artist, he is coming here to show the impact of the war,""Last Men in Aleppo" director Feras Fayyad, who is currently working out of San Francisco, told The Wrap. "Films like this are the only way we can use our voices to speak out against this war. We are doing what Americans have done for so long and that is to use art as a space and a platform for changing. And what the government is doing is building a wall to control art.”

    "Last Men in Aleppo" is the first film directed and produced by Syrians to earn an Oscar nomination.

    Abeed isn't the only member of the movie's team who will be missing out on Oscar night. The White Helmets co-founder, Mahmoud Al-Hatter, who is featured in the movie, was reportedly unable to apply for a Syrian passport to attend the Oscars as Syrian president Bashar al-Assad and his supporters have called The White Helmets a front for Al-Qaeda.

    SEE ALSO: The 10 worst movies to win the best picture Oscar — and what should have won

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    netflix bright

    • Netflix has focused significantly more on television than movies in recent years.
    • New data from third-party Netflix search engine Flixable shows that the amount of TV on Netflix has nearly tripled since 2010.
    • The number of movies, meanwhile, has gone down by thousands of titles.

     

    If you thought Netflix's movie selection had been lacking lately, you're right. The streaming service's amount of movies has dipped by over 2,000 titles since 2010, while its number of TV shows has nearly tripled. 

    Third-party Netflix search engine Flixable compiled data that shows a dramatic shift in Netflix's priorities in recent years.

    In 2010, Netflix had 530 TV shows compared to 6,755 movies. Now, in 2018, the amount of TV shows has nearly tripled to 1,569, and the amount of movies offered has decreased to 4,010.

    Below is a chart from Flixable detailing the changes:

    netflix

    It's no secret that Netflix has focused more on TV shows and less on movies in recent years, but now we have a visual representation of just how significant that focus has become. 

    In 2016, Netflix's chief content officer Ted Sarandos said that "no matter [how good the movie catalog was], we end up with a third of our watching being movies." He explained that if viewers were passionate about a movie, they would have already seen it in theaters by the time it ended up on Netflix. It was hard to create an event.

    To counter this, Netflix has begun to release is own "original" movies, and will release 80 in 2018. But that's an expensive proposition, and will naturally lead to a smaller catalog size.

    But it could work to make Netflix more valuable for its users. 

    Sarandos called the Will Smith movie "Bright" a big test for Netflix. Could Netflix have its own blockbuster? It seems so. Even though it got shredded by critics, when the film was finally available to stream in December, 11 million people viewed it in its first three days.

    SEE ALSO: The official numbers are in, and 'Black Panther' soared past the latest 'Star Wars' for a historic $242 million opening weekend

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    NOW WATCH: You can connect all 9 Best Picture Oscar nominees with actors they have in common — here's how


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    justice league flash batman


     

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    justice league flash batman


     

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    killmonger black panther

    It took a surprisingly long time for the first superhero to meet the first supervillain.

    In 1938, Action Comics No. 1 launched the superhero genre by introducing Superman and pitting him against … the abstract concept of malfeasance in the criminal justice system (he delivered a signed confession that exonerated a woman about to be executed for murder). For the next dozen issues, he faced petty criminals. Only in 1938 did Superman finally meet a foe truly worthy of his time: the mad scientist known as the Ultra-Humanite. Clad in a distinctive outfit (a white one-piece that evoked both a doctor’s coat and a ball gown), prone to arrogant monologuing, and bent on conquering the world, he began a proud tradition of over-the-top antagonism.

    These days, superhero fiction still thrives in the four-color page, but far more people find their tales of costumed adventuring on the silver screen. The genre is unstoppable at the box office, and it wouldn’t have gotten as big as it is today without solid supervillainy. Marvel Studios’ Black Panther just introduced one of the best of the best in Michael B. Jordan’s Erik Killmonger, and we felt the time was ripe to see how where he fits in the ultra-baddie canon. We proudly present to you a definitive list of the 25 best movie supervillains of all time.

    Our stipulations were as follows: Each character had to be one of the primary antagonists in a superhero movie (meaning we didn’t include larger-than-life villains in non-superhero movies, e.g., Hannibal Lecter) that had a theatrical release (sorry to all the straight-to-video releases and TV movies out there). In searching for our winners, we generally looked at three criteria that are essential to top-flight mega-nasties.

    The great ones are visually interesting — that doesn’t necessarily mean a costume, just character design that leaves an impression and expresses what the person is all about. They also have to be remarkable in the screenplay — they usually reflect something relevant back at their respective heroes and have a clever (and at least somewhat intelligible, which is all too rare) master plan. And finally, they have to be played by actors who know how to light up the screen. There are quite a lot of generic Big Bads out there, but the finest ones are often even more exquisite than the folks we’re supposed to be rooting for. Let’s go into the secret lair, shall we?

    SEE ALSO: 50 movies that critics really hate but normal people love

    25. Gwen Grayson / Royal Pain (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) — "Sky High"

    The charming teen flick Sky High is the most unjustly overlooked work of our two-decade-old superhero boom. If you’re one of the many who haven’t seen it, you should probably forget you even saw this entry, as it spoils the big twist. But it’s more important to praise the film than protect it from spoilers, so let us offer accolades to the great Mary Elizabeth Winstead, who turned in a great villain performance before she became the sought-after supporting actor she is today.

    Gwen Grayson appears at first to be a stereotypical teenage love interest for the adolescent protagonist, and she does the best she can with that early material, but once she reveals herself as the film’s grudge-bearing antagonist, the magic begins. Winstead wears grievances with the best of them, growling and scowling her way into your heart, and it’s exciting to see the movie subvert your expectations about what an actress like her can do in a picture like this.



    24. Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) — "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice"

    When Warner Bros. announced that Jesse Eisenberg would be playing Lex Luthor in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, one could’ve been forgiven for assuming it would just be a retread of his performance as Mark Zuckerberg in The Social Network. After all, his Zuck had many of the classic elements of past Lex depictions: insatiable avarice, preternatural calm, eternal condescension, and smugness for days. But Eisenberg and director Zack Snyder chose a different path, one that veered more toward giddy insanity than cool imperiousness.

    Lex’s plot is nonsensical and his character design lackluster (at least the wig is memorable), but his portrayal is one of the film’s highlights. Unlike your average Big Bad, he has virtually no charisma; indeed, his hornet’s nest of tics and grins is supremely off-putting. In a film that stumbles on so many other points (though not as many as its critics claim), Lex’s ability to provide discomfort is something of a virtue. You really want to see this guy go down, not because you fear a world where he’s in charge, but because you’ve met guys like him before and they drive you nuts.



    23. Col. Stryker (Brian Cox) — "X2"

    The X-Men have succeeded as a franchise in comics, television, and film in spite of the fact that their antagonists so routinely have the same gist as one another: They’re bigots. Lazy creators routinely give us little reason to be interested in specific anti-mutant crusaders, merely using them as mouthpieces for simplistic prejudice. And then there’s Col. Stryker. Brian Cox and the team behind X2 did as good a job as anyone ever has at crafting a mutant-hater. He’s a stout, plainspoken, Vuhjinyuh-accented black-ops spook, endowed with Cox’s talent for threatening whispers and unsettling half-smiles.

    We certainly want him to lose, but he’s not motivated by dull bigotry: In a remarkable early scene, Stryker reveals that his son is a mutant with devastating mental abilities who drove poor Mrs. Stryker to a power-drill-induced suicide. Who wouldn’t get a little monomaniacal? Ultimately, we watch Stryker with fascination because he is a perfect, fleshed-out vessel for our suspicion about the biases and tactics of our own government. Mutant superheroes may be an implausible concept, but there is no worse real-life supervillainy than the use of state power against a minority population.



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    Black Panther

    • The "Black Panther" character Erik Killmonger is such a compelling villain that #KillmongerWasRight was trending on Twitter after the film's release.
    • Many Twitter users expressed sympathy with Killmonger's argument.

     

    Michael B. Jordan's turn as the "Black Panther" villain Erik Killmonger has earned praise from critics and fans alike as one of the most compelling supervillain performances in movie history since the film's release last week.

    What makes the plight of Killmonger so compelling for both critics and fans is the strength of his argument despite his violent methods. And the strength of Michael B. Jordan's sympathetic performance as the character is also a major factor, as Business Insider's Jason Guerrasio noted in his review of the film.

    Many fans of the film have thus taken to Twitter after seeing "Black Panther" to voice their agreement with Killmonger's argument against the seclusion of the film's fictional African nation Wakanda, which is rich with resources and the precious metal Vibranium.

    Here are some of the best #KillmongerWasRight tweets:

     

    Many Twitter users that tweeted #KillmongerWasRight also disagreed with the character's approach.

     

    However, Jordan's performance is just one factor in an exceptional film that has taken the country and world by storm. "Black Panther" scored the second-highest four-day opening in US history with $242 million earned domestically, and it stands at a 97% "Fresh" rating on the reviews aggregator Rotten Tomatoes. 

    SEE ALSO: The 25 best movie supervillains of all time, ranked

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: You can connect all 9 Best Picture Oscar nominees with actors they have in common — here's how


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    marlon brando the godfather

    The beauty of Netflix is that the streaming service has a wealth of genre options at your disposal.

    If you want to get your action fix on, you are free to do so. If you’re in the mood for a comedy, thriller, or straight-up horror movie, they’ve got those as well. But sometimes it’s hard to beat a genuinely great drama, and boy does Netflix have a wealth of options in this particular genre.

    To help whittle down your choices, we’ve gone ahead and curated a list of the very best dramas on Netflix right now, which run the gamut from period pieces to relationship dramas to little-seen gems. There are movies from big, well-known filmmakers on this list, and there are also films from up-and-comers that are absolutely worth checking out.

    So peruse through our list of the best drama movies on Netflix below, and get to watchin’. But beware; some of these may require a tissue or seven.

    SEE ALSO: The 10 worst movies to win the best picture Oscar — and what should have won

    "The Shawshank Redemption"

    Director: Frank Darabont

    Writers: Stephen King (Short Story), Frank Darabont

    Cast: Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, Clancy Brown, Bob Gunton, William Sadler, Gil Bellows, Mark Rolston, James Whitmore, Jeffrey DeMunn

    Along with The Godfather, The Shawshank Redemption is a no-brainer when it comes to must-watch dramas. After nearly 25 years, this adaptation of a surprisingly non-supernatural King short story remains on the list of critics’ best movies ever made, despite the fact that it didn’t manage to take home any wins for its 7 Oscar nominations. In the years since, The Shawshank Redemption always seems to be playing somewhere on cable TV, but if it’s been a while since you’ve seen it uninterrupted, luckily Netflix makes that a viable option.

    Centering on Andy Dufresne, a man imprisoned in the title prison, The Shawshank Redemption follows his relationships with both the friends and the enemies he makes while on the inside. The TV versions may have left out some of the tougher thematic material over the years, so it’s worth reminding you that this film was rated R for a reason. That being said, it remains one of the most hopeful, optimistic, and celebrated movies ever made, so anytime is a good time for Shawshank. –Dave Trumbore



    "Fruitvale Station"

    Director: Ryan Coogler

    Writer: Ryan Coogler

    Cast: Michael B. Jordan, Melonie Diaz, Octavia Spencer, Kevin Durand, Chad Michael Murray

    There’s a good chance you’ve heard of both Coogler and Jordan from the smash hit Black Panther, or possibly from their previous success, Creed, but to see where it all started for the cinematic pair, you’ll want to check out Fruitvale Station. Not only does it serve as the foundation of what’s sure to be a long and storied career for Coogler, it marked Jordan’s best performance in a feature film after excellent turns in The Wire and Friday Night Lights. It’s also a sufficiently woke film for contemporary times, despite the fact that it came out 5 years ago and deals with a real-world tragedy that transpired 5 years before that.

    Jordan stars as Oscar Grant III, a young man living in the Bay Area who takes it upon himself to live a better life starting on New Year’s Eve. But Grant finds that change doesn’t come overnight. As the New Year approaches, he finds himself in situations that test his newfound resolutions, though it’s ultimately a run-in with a police officer at the Fruitvale BART Station that will change his life, and that of millions of people he’d never met. Fruitvale Station is a tough story, but not an isolated one, making it necessary watching. – Dave Trumbore



    "Gangs of New York"

    Director: Martin Scorsese

    Writers: Jay Cocks, Steven Zaillian, and Kenneth Lonergan

    Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Day-Lewis, Cameron Diaz, Brendan Gleeson, Liam Neeson, John C. Reilly, Jim Broadbent, and Henry Thomas

    Gangs of New York is a true dramatic epic, through and through. Legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese had wanted to bring this story to the screen for decades and finally realized his vision in 2002, chronicling life in the Five Points of Manhattan in 1846, when the neighborhood was filled with gangs, racism, and political corruption as the Civil War raged on. This is a movie that tries to tackle a lotat once, and while it doesn’t succeed in every regard, it works more often than it doesn’t. Daniel Day-Lewis delivers one of the best performances of his career as the villainous Bill the Butcher, while the movie marked the beginning of a fruitful relationship between Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio. – Adam Chitwood



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    Cloudy with a Chance of Sunshine Brand New Day Entertainment Freebird Entertainment

    • Amazon Video Direct allows filmmakers, free of charge, to upload their work (movie, TV series, shorts) on Amazon for customers to buy, rent, or watch on Prime Video.
    • However, beginning March 1, filmmaker royalties for projects that are on Prime will decrease 60%.
    • Filmmakers are outraged and some in the industry believe Amazon is taking advantage of artists who desperately need the service, as it's one of the few outlets for their work.


    Independent filmmakers who for the last few years have found a way to get some cash for their work by distributing it on Amazon's self-distribution arm, Amazon Video Direct (AVD), were disappointed to learn recently that their royalties would soon be slashed by 60%. 

    Unlike Amazon Studios — which acquires films for theatrical and streaming, and produces TV series and movies in-house — AVD gives filmmakers an outlet, free of charge, to let their work be available on Amazon to purchase, rent, or be viewed on Prime Video (which filmmakers get royalties from Amazon for).

    On January 29, filmmakers who had uploaded their work to AVD were notified that beginning March 1, the royalties they got for putting their work on Amazon Prime would drop from its current 15 cent per-hour rate to 6 cents per-hour for any project worldwide that had under 100,000 hours streamed in a year.

    The email, which Business Insider obtained, also stated that all hours streamed for a title would be reset back to zero at the end of 365 days.

    This means that, despite how many hours projects pile up in a year's time, all the titles will go back to 6 cents per-hour at the start of a new year.

    Amazon touts AVD as a "self-service publishing interface, without the need for complex negotiations or contracts." But Amazon's ability to change things on the fly has now left filmmakers angry, and has forced them to decide if they should continue using the platform, or seek other financially rewarding outlets for their work.

    "The new reality for filmmakers is the whole thing is completely one-sided"

    For many low-budget filmmakers, being on AVD (as well as YouTube and other web-streaming distribution outlets) is where they will earn a good majority of revenue for their work. Most have put their projects on the service because they are creating content that won't attract the major film festivals or have the potential to be acquired for millions of dollars. The 60% royalty decrease has some filmmakers feeling they are getting the rug pulled from under them by one of the biggest companies in the world.

    37 problems lisa ebersole"I have a hard time imagining that independent film is affecting their bottom line," Lisa Ebersole, director of the web series "37 Problems," told Business Insider. "It feels like such an arbitrary place to cut."

    Ebersole said she was earning around $1,500 a month from having "37 Problems" available to Prime subscribers through AVD. She said the extra cash helped her not have to find a third job to support herself and her art.

    Filmmaker Rebecca Norris, who has her movie "Cloudy With a Chance of Sunshine" on AVD for purchase or rent (but not Prime), was so impressed by the ease of AVD she even wrote about the advantages of using the service.

    Norris said she was planning to make her movie available on Prime but then got the email about the royalty change and is now reconsidering adding her title.

    "If you do the math for our film, we would have to have 11 people watch the entirety of the film to make a dollar," Norris said of the 6-cent royalty. "We don't know if it's worth it."

    And Mike Whitla, whose animated music shorts catered for kids, "Howdytoons," have increased in views on Prime every month since he uploaded them, said with the change in royalties he feels he's going back to square one. He also said the change by AVD shows how filmmakers are at the mercy of Amazon because you have no contract with the company.

    "One of the difficulties of the new reality for filmmakers is the whole thing is completely one-sided," Whitla said. "They can decide tomorrow, 'No, it's not going to be 6 cents anymore, we're going to go to 3 cents' and what is my choice? I can remove the content and make zero or keep it there. It's not a good situation to be in so it's very frustrating."

    Here is a breakdown of the AVD content rates beginning March 1:

    Tier 1: 0-99,999 hours streamed, $0.06/hour
    Tier 2: 100,000-499,999 hours streamed, $0.10/hour
    Tier 3: 500,000-999,999 hours streamed, $0.15/hour
    Tier 4: 1 million-plus hours streamed, $0.06/hour

    There was a small amount of good news in the changes, however. The previous 500,000-hour, or $75,000, annual pay cap on AVD titles will be lifted beginning March 1; and filmmakers will continue to receive 50% of the sales from their AVD titles purchased or rented on Amazon.

    "The big untold story in our business"

    Some in the industry see this as the latest example of powerful companies getting hours of content for pennies. Even the analytics Amazon gives its filmmakers turn out to be unhelpful.

    "This is the big untold story in our business," said Emily Best, CEO of Seed & Spark, a crowdfunding and streaming service known well in the independent film community. "The data tech companies can see at any moment — what people are mousing over their website, where a sale exactly came from — filmmakers have none of those tools. We handed all the power to Amazon and Netflix. They have the data and independent filmmakers don't."

    Whitla said the data provided by AVD is extremely limited and not very helpful for him.

    "I have no idea how people are finding my stuff through Amazon Video Direct," he said. "The analytics we're provided, you feel like you're fumbling around in the dark. I get very meager analytics. I get a report that says the total minutes in each country in each day, and then I can sort that by series. That's it."

    Seed & Spark began its own subscription service, similar to Amazon Video Direct, and offers a 22 cents per-minute royalty to its filmmakers. Best said her company is also striving to provide audience data that goes far beyond what AVD and the other big streaming companies will provide its filmmakers.

    Vimeo has also expanded into the streaming distribution realm. The company has an eye-popping 90% revenue split for filmmakers who upload their movies to its Vimeo On Demand subscription service.

    "We believe that putting more money in the creator's pocket is a good thing for our industry and the broader video ecosystem," Vimeo CEO Anjali Sud said. "It encourages more people to become storytellers and earn a living from those stories."

    Howdytoons mike whitlaWith the royalty tweak by AVD and the recent change in YouTube's advertising program that has also affected small video makers, companies seem to be trying to distance themselves from DIY filmmakers who need these services the most.

    However, in a statement to Business Insider regarding the royalty change on AVD, an Amazon spokeswoman pointed to the fact that titles getting higher "customer engagement" would now be rewarded with higher royalty rates. She also highlighted the elimination of the annual $75,000 cap, and stressed that Amazon always listened to "provider feedback."

    Amazon also confirmed to Business Insider that movies that take part in Amazon Video Direct's Film Festival Stars — titles from select major film festivals that join AVD — will get enhanced royalties and not take part in the four-tier rate structure.

    
It's hard to say if the 60% royalty decrease by AVD will cripple its business model. Many of the filmmakers on AVD Business Insider talked to said they were likely going to continue using the service, or were unsure if they would leave it. And filmmakers getting into the self-distribution game aren't completely dismissing AVD.

    Filmmaker Jamie Stuart, who is preparing to self-distribute his debut feature "A Motion Selfie," is currently figuring out how he's going to unveil it to audiences.

    "When I blanked the festivals I submitted to and self-publishing looked like the ultimate option, I began focusing on Vimeo and Amazon," Stuart said. "Vimeo seemed more attractive — better features, more customizable. Amazon seemed like a slightly more complex undertaking. For instance, they required close captioning — however, my movie has no spoken dialogue. Plus, it would take several days for the movie to go live once it was submitted. The plan I settled on was to launch with Vimeo, then consider going to Amazon as a step two. Revenue is revenue."


    But Emily Best warned that when you deal with a company like Amazon, you have to be wary of every decision.

    "The idea that they were ever going to be on the independent filmmaker's side, that's not what they were built to do," Best said.

    SEE ALSO: I tried cutting the cord with Sling TV for a month — here's why I returned to cable

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: You can connect all 9 Best Picture Oscar nominees with actors they have in common — here's how


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    elizabeth showgirls

    Every year has its good movies and bad movies, but it takes a special quality to be both good and bad at the same time.

    Sure, there are plenty of dumb-on-purpose movies, like "Black Dynamite." Or campy movies, like "Face/Off." And there are soulless attempts to be purposefully trashy, like the "Sharknado" series.

    This list isn't about those. These are about the movies that were made sincerely, yet fail on every level — and are hilarious as a result.

    Here are 18 movies that are so bad, they're good.

    "The Room" (2003)

    Directed, starring, written by, and produced by Tommy Wiseau, the movie is a simple tale of a man scorned by his wife who cheats on his best friend.

    It's astonishingly bad. "The Room" is considered one of the worst movies ever made because of the sheer incompetence in front of and behind the camera. Now a cult classic, the movie plays at midnight screenings around the country, sometimes with Wiseau himself — now insisting he was in on the joke — there for the Q&A.

    The legend around "The Room" has grown so great that "The Disaster Artist," a movie starring and directed by James Franco, which is based on a behind-the-scenes book, was released last year. It's up for an adapted screenplay Oscar.



    "Battlefield Earth" (2000)

    "Battlefield Earth" was widely ridiculed upon its release and flopped at the box office, but eventually became a cult classic.

    It's a sci-fi epic starring and produced by John Travolta, who adapted the book from a novel by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. It's about humans who revolt against an ancient empire of alien rule.

    As you can imagine, it's filled with awkward dialogue, nonsensical plots, wooden acting, and poor lighting.

    "'Battlefield Earth' is like taking a bus trip with someone who has needed a bath for a long time. It's not merely bad; it's unpleasant in a hostile way,"Roger Ebert wrote upon the movie's release.



    "Plan 9 from Outer Space" (1959)

    Before "The Room,""Plan 9 from Outer Space" frequently held the title of the best bad movie of all time. It's a low-budget sci-fi flick from 1959 made by exploitation master Ed Wood, about aliens who try to stop humans from developing a weapon that would destroy the universe.

    With a big budget and a smart script, the movie may have worked. It has neither

     



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    barry jenkins moonlight oscars

    • 89 films have won the Oscar for best picture in the history of the Academy Awards.
    • We ranked all 89 films based on how well they fared with critics.

     

    As the 90th Academy Awards looms, this year's best picture race is one of the closest, most unpredictable of all time.

    But before the winner is finally announced on March 4, we've reflected on the other 89 winners that have taken home the top prize. 

    Business Insider ranked all 89 films — from the first winner "Wings" from 1927 to the latest winner, 2016's "Moonlight"— based on their critic score on reviews-aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes. In the case of ties, we broke them based on their audience scores on the site. (And if those were the same, the film with more user ratings came out on top.) 

    Some of the results may be a surprise ("Argo" is ... pretty high on the list), while others (notorious winner "Crash") probably won't be.

    All 89 best picture Oscar winners are ranked below:

    SEE ALSO: The 23 best drama movies on Netflix right now

    89. "The Broadway Melody" (1929)

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 35%



    88. "The Greatest Show on Earth" (1952)

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 44%



    87. "Cimarron" (1931)

    Rotten Tomatoes score: 53%



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    MoviePass

    • MoviePass is a $10-per-month subscription service for going to the movie theater. It comes with plenty of positives, but it also raises some dilemmas.
    • One of those is how to navigate a relationship when your significant other doesn't use the service.
    • There's even a comment thread on Reddit dedicated to "MoviePass dating tips."

     

    MoviePass, the $10-a-month movie theater subscription service, has emerged as a cost-saving mechanism for millions of moviegoers — but it has some drawbacks.

    Users have complained about delayed cards and subpar customer service, and that their accounts have been suspended without warning. But even when everything goes smoothly technically, there's one social issue I've faced that you may have experienced as well: Dating someone who doesn't have MoviePass.

    For $10 a month, MoviePass allows you to see up to one movie per day in theaters. You simply check into the movie on the app, within 100 yards of the theater, and use the MoviePass MasterCard to purchase the ticket. The company pays the movie theater full price for the ticket.

    For film buffs like me, it's a no-brainer, and even for casual moviegoers it can save money, which has helped the company snag over two million subscribers.

    But here's a problem: My significant other doesn't use MoviePass.

    It raises a bevy of moral dilemmas: Is it appropriate to use it right in front of her? Should I be discreet, even if we agreed to pay for ourselves? Granted, these may be bigger questions for newer couples, but if you have MoviePass and have entered the theater with someone who doesn't, I'm sure you've thought about it.

    Many of these questions stem from the simple fact that when you have MoviePass, there is no marginal cost to seeing one more movie. In one sense, you aren't paying for a movie, and your date is. That could even come up when you are suggesting that you go to the movies for the date. Are you choosing a movie night because it's "free" for you? Should you pay for half their ticket?

    In my case, I go to the movies a lot, and many of those times it's alone. My girlfriend doesn't live with me or even in the same city, and it's just super convenient to go to the movies whenever I want. That means I don't see a lot of movies with her.

    But for the ones I do, MoviePass has actually provided an unexpected benefit. With MoviePass, I feel even more comfortable seeing movies a second time in theaters. In fact, I saw Oscar frontrunner "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" a second time with my girlfriend. I don't even like the movie all that much, but that's okay because with MoviePass, I saw it for "free."

    As to her paying full price for her ticket, most of the time when we go together, I'm not "inviting" her; she wants to see the movie as well, and we've been in a relationship long enough where we can pay for ourselves.

    But not everyone's boyfriend or girlfriend loves the high ticket prices in theaters. My colleague Carrie Wittmer shared a different experience with me.

    "I've been trying to get my boyfriend to get MoviePass, too," she told me. "He doesn't go as often as me, and complains about how expensive it is. But even if he saw one movie a month, he would probably save over ten bucks. He hasn't gotten it yet, but complains about how expensive tickets are every time we go. I tell him to get MoviePass, he doesn't, and the cycle continues."

    There's even a Reddit thread named "Dating with moviepass tips," in which Redditors suggest ways to make a date at the theater go smoothly if your date does not have MoviePass. Some of the responses are ... not exactly productive.

    "No time for dates," one commenter wrote. "Only have time for movies."

    But one commenter posed a somewhat compelling argument: "Make them pay for themselves, but tell them they could have saved a lot of money if only they had Moviepass. Then get them to sign up using your referral link."

    Problem solved.

    SEE ALSO: Everything you ever wanted to know about MoviePass, the $10-a-month service that lets you see one movie per day in theaters

    Join the conversation about this story »

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