Netflix is continuing its push into original feature films by signing on Adam Sandler for four exclusive movies.
The comedy star's Happy Madison Productions will "work alongside Netflix" to develop the films, Netflix said in a statement. Sandler will produce and star in the movies. There's no word on what the films will be about, what their budgets will be or when they'll arrive, and the deal doesn't including any of Sandler's existing studio commitments.
What it means: This is Netflix's second feature film announcement of the week, having revealed plans for a Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon sequel on Monday. The company has made clear that it's unhappy with Hollywood "windowing" that keeps new movies off of streaming services for long periods of time, so it's fighting back by funding its own features.
Quiet in the theater
Notably, Netflix's announcement doesn't say whether the Sandler films will also appear in theaters, but it seems highly unlikely. Theater operators generally oppose any meddling with the windowing system, and several major theater chains have already made plans to boycott the Crouching Tiger sequel. (The film will be screened in some IMAX theaters, however.)
Perhaps some day, Netflix will fund movies so irresistible that theaters can't afford to turn them down. That probably won't be the case with Sandler's films, given his recent hit-or-miss track record at the box office, but it's still one more step toward shaking up a system that gives viewers no choice.
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