How can film studios know exact release date of a movie 2 years in advance?


There are a bunch of movies that already has exact release date in 2022. There are just so many things that can go wrong within 2 years, how is it possible that they can do that?

In: Technology

Because the studio controls when it will release.

They set the date, so they know the date.

To add: If problems come up they will just change the date. Happens all the time

Studios make movies for a living – they have a good idea how long it takes to shoot, edit, market, etc. a film to prepare it for release. Looking at the scope of a film, it isn’t hard to say “OK, 2 years is about the right timeline” From there, they can slot films into their release schedule, so they don’t have movies competing for the same market segment at the same time – maybe the movie only takes 1.5 years to finish, but two movies would be released at the same time to the same segment or they want this movie to be the summer blockbuster, so they slot it in 6 months later.

Sure, sometimes something could go wrong that would mean they miss the release date (like all the movies that are being pushed now) but then they just push the release date back – release dates aren’t contracts or anything, so if they need to push they just do it.

Film studios are the ones who set the release date, probably based on estimates of how long it will take to shoot and cut together, plus other factors such as what will be going on in the world at the time. Not much sense in releasing a movie the Friday of Super Bowl weekend. So it’s not like some cosmic force determines a date and the studio is forced to honor it. Besides, release dates get pushed back all the time.

They take account of things that can go wrong. If nothing goes wrong, which is quite rare, then the filming will be ahead of schedule and under budget. This will often allow them to spend more time in the post production to make the movie even better. If the movie is behind schedule the movie studio might spend more money in hopes to get back on schedule or they might rush things even more and make a lower quality movie that will hit the target date.

The target release date is usually set before the studio spends money on the movie. It is common to release blockbuster movies right before hollidays as then more people will have the time to see the movie. This is why you get summer blockbusters and christmas movies. But less popular movies might also get a lot of views if they are able to time the release date to fall between other movies. So movie studios will set target release dates years in advance and then adjust the filming of the movie to hit that date. In some cases movies might have to wait months after they are finished before they are released.

They don’t *know* as such. But they have a pretty good idea from decades of practice and the schedule has some slack built in for when minor things do go wrong.

If something major happens (COVID-19, someone vital throws a hissy fit and storms off, the stages burn down…) then the schedule just gets changed. But since this knocks on to planning by cinemas, marketing, etc it’s generally avoided as far as possible.