- The nonconventional release strategy for Horizon films will save Warner Bros. millions in marketing costs, but poses a risk.
- Close release dates of both films could benefit their success by keeping the story fresh in audiences’ minds, increasing investment in the sequel.
- Costner and Warner Bros. are banking on the success of the first two Horizon films to pave the way for future chapters and establish Horizon as a prominent Western film franchise.
Hollywood insiders explain the unusual release strategy for next year’s Horizon movies. Directed by and starring Kevin Costner, Horizon is an epic Western film that chronicles the settlement of the American West pre-and post-Civil War. Horizon: An American Saga and Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 2, will both release in summer 2024, on June 28 and August 16, respectively.
Now, Puck magazine details Horizon’s unusual release strategy. According to a source, Warner Bros. agreed to the unconventional and risky release plan because Costner and the Horizon investors are covering the project’s marketing and release costs. This will save the studio about $40 or $50 million, and Horizon‘s dual release will potentially make the marketing of both films easier.
Will Horizon’s Release Strategy Work for the Film?
As the Puck article discusses, this strategy would typically be a huge risk for a studio like Warner Bros. In the event that Horizon: An American Saga flops, Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 2’s release right on its heels would pose a problem for the film. Rather than cancel the sequel or strategize as to how to better market it, Warner Bros. would be stuck with a sequel film that will likely flop even harder if the first film does not sit well with viewers.
That being said, the Horizon films also have the great potential to take off if all goes well. By the time Horizon: An American Saga leaves theaters, Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 2 will be practically ready to enter theaters. The miniscule gap means that the first Horizon film will still be fresh in audiences’ minds, making them more likely to invest in the film’s follow-up story.
Costner and Warner Bros. are banking a lot on the success of these first two Horizon films, as there is currently a plan to make Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 3 and Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 4 as follow-ups. With Costner’s recent work in Yellowstone serving as a reminder of his prowess in the Western genre, Horizon has the potential to become the next big Western film entity. Hopefully, Horizon’s unconventional release strategy will help propel this reputation forward.