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Angela Lang/CNET

AT&T’s decision last year to move its 2021 Warner Bros. theatrical slate to a simultaneous release on HBO Max at no additional charge sent shockwaves throughout Hollywood. While the full ramifications of that decision remain to be seen, as the coronavirus continues to disrupt everyday life, the move does provide at least some comfort to those looking for exciting new things to watch while stuck at home. 

With AT&T putting each of these first-run films on a 31-day clock before they leave HBO Max, the first of these big films, Wonder Woman 1984exited the streaming service on Jan. 24. Those looking for something fresh, however, will soon have other options as Judas and The Black Messiah hits HBO Max on Friday, Feb. 12. 

Here is a breakdown of some of the Warner Bros. 2021 theatrical slate, with the current release dates for when the movies will arrive in theaters and on HBO Max, as well as answers to a few other questions about the situation. 

Which big movies are coming out when? 

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The 2021 Warner Bros. slate is coming to HBO Max. 


WarnerMedia

Here is a list of some of the big movies coming to HBO Max in 2021, and when they will arrive both in theaters and on the streaming service. 

  • Feb. 12: Judas and The Black Messiah
  • Feb. 26: Tom & Jerry
  • March 31: Godzilla vs. Kong 
  • April 16: Mortal Kombat 
  • May 14: Those Who Wish Me Dead
  • June 4: The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It 
  • June 18: In The Heights
  • July 16: Space Jam: A New Legacy
  • Aug. 6: The Suicide Squad 
  • Sept. 10: Malignant
  • Sept. 24: The Many Saints Of Newark
  • Oct. 1: Dune
  • Nov. 19: King Richard
  • Dec. 22: Matrix 4

More Warner Bros. films for 2021 — including Reminiscence and Cry Macho — have been announced for the service but don’t yet have release dates.

Will any of these films be released in Imax in theaters? 

WarnerMedia, the group within AT&T that oversees both Warner Bros. and HBO Max, confirmed to CNET that it plans to release a number of the above films in Imax in areas where theaters are open. This includes Godzilla vs. Kong, Mortal Kombat, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, The Suicide Squad, Dune and Matrix 4. 

If I watch on HBO Max, will the films be available in 4K HDR? 

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HBO Max will stream its theatrical releases in 4K. 


Sarah Tew/CNET

The first major film in this endeavor, Wonder Woman 1984, was also HBO Max’s first title to stream in 4K HDR, Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. Whereas rival streaming services like Netflix and Disney Plus regularly release new originals in the higher resolution formats, HBO Max has been a bit slower building out its 4K offerings. 

WarnerMedia confirmed to CNET that the entire theatrical slate that is coming to HBO Max will stream in 4K on the streaming service, though Dolby Atmos support for higher quality sound may vary depending on how each film was produced.

How long will these films be on HBO Max? 

The initial window for these films to stream on HBO Max is 31 days, though the exact times may vary. Wonder Woman 1984, for instance, arrived at 9 a.m. PT on Dec. 25. 

We don’t yet know when exactly the clock will start with all of these upcoming films, as it is possible some titles will arrive earlier to coincide with midnight screenings being held in theaters. 

After that 31-day period is up the films will continue their theatrical runs and follow the traditional post-theater process of heading to on-demand, DVD, Blu-ray and digital platforms.

Is there any extra cost to stream these movies on HBO Max? 

Unlike Disney Plus and its Premier access, HBO Max does not charge for first-run viewing of its newest movies. All of the above films will be available to stream as part of the regular HBO Max subscription that runs $15 per month. You can currently get six months for $70 if you pay upfront, a $20 savings.



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