The Weinstein Company’s experimental strategy behind Snowpiercer—which debuted VOD two weeks after opening in U.S. theaters—is still being debated, but TWC is quickly revisiting unconventional release models for One Chance, director David Frankel’s movie about Britain’s Got Talent’s unlikely opera singer Paul Potts.
The film, which stars James Corden (Begin Again) as the unassuming young man who became a YouTube sensation when he wowed Simon Cowell on British television, is scheduled to arrive in theaters on Oct. 10. But beginning on Sept. 30, it will be available exclusively for free on Yahoo Screen.
“We’re so thrilled to be partnering with Yahoo on this first venture in bringing One Chance to audiences online before it hits theaters,” said David Glasser, COO and president of TWC. “In today’s digital era, technology has developed and changed the landscape of how many people watch movies and TV. Our partnership with Yahoo has allowed us to adapt and expand our reach to limitless audiences.”
The decision will certainly have an impact on the ultimate reach of the film in theaters; most movie chains protect their self-interest by refusing to book films that don’t honor a 90-day window before releasing films on VOD. Snowpiercer, for example, has maxed out in 356 theaters so far. But clearly TWC believes that certain movies are better suited for other platforms. One Chance, which debuted at last year’s Toronto Film Festival, has already grossed $9.8 million in other territories, including Great Britain.
[Note: This post has been updated to include the film’s release dates. 9/24/14]