While 2020 and 2021 have been a roller coaster for everyone in Hollywood, arguably no studio has been through a more tumultuous 18 months than Warner Bros., who made the bold decision in late 2020 to release all of their 2021 films day-and-date on HBO Max, which meant that everything from Mortal Kombat to The Suicide Squad to Dune would hit theaters and streaming on the same day.
The Many Saints of Newark, the highly-anticipated The Sopranos prequel film, is one of those films that found itself in Warner Bros’ new post-pandemic release strategy, and series creator David Chase remains none too pleased about the decision.
Speaking to Deadline ahead of the film’s release on October 1, the 76-year-old Chase — similar to Christopher Nolan (who is now at Universal Pictures as a result of WB’s 2021 decision) and Denis Villeneuve — essentially ripped Warner Bros. over their date-and-date strategy and even went as far as saying he wouldn’t have made the film if he knew this would be the outcome.
“I don’t think, frankly that I would’ve taken the job if I knew it was going to be a day-and-date release. I think it’s awful,” Chase said. “I still am [extremely angry].”
“I mean, I don’t know how much you go into this, you know, like…okay. If I was…one of those guys, if one of those executives was sitting here and I was to start pissing and moaning about it, they’d say, you know, there’s 17 other movies that have the same problem,” Chase said. “What could we do? Covid! Well, I know, but those 16 other movies didn’t start out as a television show. They don’t have to shed that television image before you get people to the theater. But we do. And that’s where we’re at. People should go see it in a theater. It was designed to be a movie. It was…it’s beautiful as a movie. I never thought that it would be back on HBO. Never.” [via Deadline]
Despite Chase’s anger, though, he remains open to the idea of making a sequel to the prequel — which would take place *after* Many Saints and before The Sopranos.
The Many Saints of Newark stars Michael Gandolfini as Tony Soprano, Jon Bernthal as Giovanni “Johnny Boy” Soprano, Corey Stoll as Junior Soprano, Vera Farmiga as Livia Soprano, Billy Magnussen as Paulie “Walnuts” Gualtieri, John Magaro as Silvio Dante, Alessandro Nivola as Dickie Moltisanti, and Leslie Odom Jr, Ray Liotta, and Joey Diaz in undisclosed roles. The Alan Taylor-directed film will hit theaters and HBO Max on Friday, October 1.