Disney's 'Avengers: Age of Ultron' Boycotted Throughout Germany
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Despite the general nerd fervor occurring at the moment, not everybody is as excited about the prospects of two of the biggest movie openings in 2015, because dozens of German movie theaters may boycott “Avengers: Age of Ultron” as well as “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”
Variety’s Leo Barraclough reports on a group of independent movie theater owners in Germany who are taking action against the Disney vehicle because of increased cost.
The reporter writes, “The theater owners, who control almost 700 screens, are boycotting ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ as a protest against what they see as punitive booking terms.”
At the heart of the claim is the purported fee increase that now rests at 53 percent of the theater’s ticket sales. Previously this fee sat at 47.7 percent.
Rather than eat the increased cost, the owners are taking a stand and stiff-arming what may be the biggest movie of the year that doesn’t feature Jedis:
The report continues that the aggravation extends beyond rental fees. Barraclough states, “Disney has also cut its contribution to advertising costs, and done away with advances for 3-D glasses, the exhibitors claimed.”
Now this summer promises to be a fantastic one for audiences around the world. While “Age of Ultron” opens domestically on May 1, it has already seen the light of day around the globe.
Deadline Hollywood hints at an eventual success as the movie opened to a whopping $200.2 million. Though the report states this figure was lower than projections had hoped for: “Disney reports that the five-day tally overseas in 44 markets was $200.2M versus yesterday’s $201.2M estimate.”
Presumably, a wide swath of Germany will ignore the massive franchise that figuratively begins a raucous 2015 movie season.
And, for fans with comic book t-shirts and “Star Wars” Lego sets in the garage, there is even worse news.
This boycott could include another Disney movie that you may have heard about. Barraclough quotes I.G. Nord’s Karl-Heinz Meier who begins with thoughts on the price hike, “We are worried — particularly about Eastern Germany. When prices go up, then we have a serious problem that could force movie theaters to close.”
Meier continues with some truly grim news, hinting at another boycott later in 2015: “The new ‘Star Wars’ film is coming out at the end of the year. Disney manages its distribution — things could get interesting.”
Essentially, this is like going down on Christmas morning and immediately tossing out the two biggest boxes in the house.
Then again, the owners don’t see them as gifts if they come with an egregiously sizable price tag.
Meier mentioned to Variety that a fee of 50 percent would be satisfactory, so it remains to be seen if Disney is listening.
We imagine there are scores of eager fans in the country that hope the monolithic company has its Mickey ears wide open.
More by Gabe Zaldivar
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