MOVIES Netflix, Amazon Movies Barred From Toronto International Film Fest's Industry Screening Venue 4:21 PM PDT 9/9/2019 by Etan Vlessing Exhibitor Cineplex says only TIFF titles that respect "the traditional theatrical model" may play on Scotiabank Theatres screens.
There's a survival thriller at the Toronto International Film Festival playing out offscreen this week at Scotiabank Theatres, the traditional Press Industry screening venue.
Cineplex, the Canadian exhibition giant that runs Scotiabank, told TIFF this year that Amazon and Netflix titles it programmed for a short run in movie theaters, or none at all, have been barred from its multiplex on Richmond Street that hosts industry and film critic guests.
“There are hundreds of fantastic films screening as part of this year’s festival, and with all those options we asked that our screens feature titles from studios who understand and appreciate the importance of the theatrical release model," Cineplex spokesperson Sarah Van Lange told The Hollywood Reporter.
As a result, TIFF scheduled films that do not comply with their traditional theatrical windows, in other venues," the festival told THR in a statement.
Cineplex CEO Ellis Jacob, besides being a key sponsor of TIFF with a seat on its board, is also chairman of the National Association of Theatre Owners, the trade organization that represents movie theater operators, who are facing a competitive threat from streaming giants and their movie home-viewing options.
"As the biggest exhibitor, our preference is always to have movies play on the big screen," Jacob told a festival panel on the theatrical marketplace at TIFF's 2018 edition.