Trolls World Tour Biggest Digital Debut Ever, Setting Stage for More Kid-Friendly Titles Going Straight to VOD

Trolls World Tour ⭐️⭐️½

$50 million is the figure I saw several publications toting for Trolls World Tour, but nobody can confirm this figure. There is also the whole reality is that some people are renting it multiple times for their children because ever 48 hours you need to purchase it at $20 again to see it for another 48 hours.

Universal is pleased that all things are doing well in Trolls land on VOD.

Universal is reporting that Trolls: World Tour scored the biggest opening day and opening weekend for a digital title, with a figure 10x larger than Universal’s next-biggest traditional digital release (Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom). It is top on every relevant digital platform, including Amazon, Comcast CMCSA, Apple AAPL, Vudu, Google/YouTube, DirectTV, Verizon Fios and FandangoNow.

‘Trolls: World Tour’ Breaks Records And Nabs Biggest Digital Debut Ever

I’ve written about this movie more than any other recently, and for good reason. If this makes it into triple digit millions not being released in the theaters, it could change the future of how new movies are released.

We may see a future — sooner than many think — where we can watch movies at home on VOD for a premium price ($19.99, lower or higher depending on title) and also watch in the theater. These are called day and date releases in industry speak.

A metric I’ve compared viewer interest and sales in the past is the number of Rotten Tomatoes audience reviews. This is more fun than scientific and dubiously accurate, but check this out.

Let’s use $50 million. According to Box Office Mojo, the Adam Sandler thriller film Uncut Gems made $50 million worldwide.

Over 12,000 audience reviews, 92% fresh by the critics and 52% rotten by the audience.

Now, let’s take a look at where Trolls World Tour sits. Given, a lot more people probably visit Rotten Tomatoes when theaters are open and we’re not in the middle of a pandemic, but the audience review numbers are dramatically different.

As of 4/16/2020 not many audience reviews for Trolls World Tour

Comparatively, let’s use Blake Lively’s movie The Rhythm Section, which bombed at the theater for a 3,000+ screenings.

So, what does this mean? Not sure, but clearly the number of people who leave audience reviews on VOD titles on Rotten Tomatoes is way down. I wish we could have had a simultaneous release in theaters, but if we hadn’t had the pandemic, Trolls World Tour never would have been a day and date release

The only thing that seems fairly certain is that more kids titles with sub $100 million budgets might be good to release day and date and/or if we’re still in the pandemic, then directly to VOD.

13+ Trolls World Tour Reviews – Festive, Flatulent Rock Covers

Trolls World Tour ⭐️⭐️½ 

Universal is rolling out the red carpet, figuratively and literally for kids if you download the FREE party pack.

Universal teamed up with Snapchat on an augmented reality lens that enables Snapchatters to transform themselves into their favorite Trolls characters.

Trolls World Tour Makes a Stop on Snapchat via an AR Lens – Adweek

Well publicized, Universal simultaneously released this bigger budget movie to VOD and whatever theaters that are currently open.

… you’ve been warned, SPOILERS ahead …

Cute Animation Suited For Younger Children

Our youngest grandson, age 3, was more into Trolls than our 5-year old who likened it to “a show for babies.” He still remained fairly engaged throughout.

There is something about the Trolls Dreamworks animation that isn’t as crisp and dynamic as Pixar. I can’t put my finger on it, but it’s just not quite as defined. It’s still good, but they have a style that lacks a little bit of resolution. I could be all wet, maybe from a pixel by pixel standpoint the resolution is there, but I compare this to Onward and come out feeling like a little something is missing.

More Colorful, More Music (but not all good)

More rainbow colors than the first Trolls, if that’s even possible. Definitely more music and most of it is good, except for the rock covers which I mostly hated.

I’m generally a fan of cover songs, even experimental ones, but pretty much hated everything about what was done to “Crazy Train” and “Rock You Like A Hurricane.” Rock and roll is my favorite genre by a mile and Ozzy and The Scorpions are bands that I love. I wanted those rock trolls to bust out some other Scorps songs like, “No One Like You”, “Can’t Live Without You”, “Blackout” or perhaps most fittingly, “The Zoo.”

As for Ozzy music? Where is the haunting, sepulcher organ of …

This is what the rock trolls should have been jamming to – “Mr. Crowley” 1981 Live featuring Randy Rhoads

Instead, we’re treated to a watery, uninspired version of “Rock You Like a Hurricane” that the guitars are about the only thing that sonically teases the original song. Covers should at least capture the essence.

Epic fail on the rock songs. And since the rock trolls are the primary antagonists, their music sucking was a major disappointment.

Now, compare that to the Simon & Garfunkel cover in the first one. The Trolls cover was really, really good there.

It brought something to the film and enhanced this scene. There wasn’t another song that would have worked as well in that sequence.

Musical moments like this do exist in World Tour, but some of the best music they could have chosen (“Freebird, man!”) were inexplicably left on the cutting room floor. Timberlake and company have the techno, funk and pop music working here, don’t get me wrong, but the rock world was sadly underrepresented.

Reviews by Others

Let’s see what others think of Trolls World Tour?

Recommended

  1. CULT FACTION (6/10): “Lots of positive vibes and a positive message about how our differences can unite us”
  2. Den of Geek / Don Kaye: “…is fun and watchable, if no world-changer. But it may be remembered for longer than anyone might have expected as a version of Barb’s “ultimate power chord” — a signifier of upheavals to come in the movie business itself.”
  3. Dewey Singleton / Dewey’s Movies: “…if someone is looking for a nice family film to watch over the weekend, then look no further—a solid 3 out of 5 and well worth $20.00 rental fee.”
  4. filmfanstake: “You’re stuck at home, your kids have watched Frozen 2 and Onward a thousand times. Trolls World Tour is a perfect change of pace.”
  5. No Bad Movie / Christopher Haskell (3.5/5): “…may not live up to its predecessor, but it does a decent job of producing laughs and looking great while doing it. The textured fabric look of the world and endless amounts of glitter never get old.”
  6. Shawn Peer / Entertainment Essence (5/10): “I may be going a little easy on this movie because of the circumstances we are all in right now, but Trolls World Tour is an easy ninety-minute watch that can put you in a good mood and forget about everything happening at the moment for a bit.”

Not Recommended (undecided or undeclared)

  1. danielsdunkings: “Look, this isn’t the worst film I’ve seen this year. Think of it as a brightly colored distraction to throw on whilst you pop and do some chores in the background  and you’ll not be far wrong.”
  2. Dave on Film (2/5): “Disappointed in the outcome. A film which feels like it should have been better than it was.”
  3. DC’S Take / DC Bolling: “…it’s more of the same, but not as cool as its predecessor. Some highlights go directly to the animation, voice cast, and delivering a message easy to understand, yet it didn’t have that refreshing plot that doesn’t make it fun, but forgettable.”
  4. Graham / Scannain: “…is not a good film. Even the elements that are somewhat decent aren’t explored enough. This could have easily been a television series that could have explored the world and characters far better but instead, we get this pretty mess. Trolls World Tour is the epitome of style over substance.”
  5. Jamie Skinner / Just a Little Bit Random: “…still predominantly filled with loud, glaringly glittery and exuberant headache-inducing musical numbers that might work for young kids, but perhaps not for those who have to watch it with them, or anyone else.”
  6. Mark Hobin / Fast Film Reviews (3/5): “…it’s almost akin to eating Pixy Stix laced with Pop Rocks paired with a shot of Mountain Dew.  It gives new meaning to the phrase eye candy.  Young kids will unquestionably be enchanted so I’m not exactly knocking it.  This might be perfect for children craving new entertainment.”
  7. Rachel’s Reviews (4.5/10): “…is harmless for kids. It has some beautiful animation and sweet moments but it could have been much better. I so wish they had shown Poppy and Branch embracing all different kinds of music in the end and everyone being richer as a result.”
  8. Trailer Trashed: “I said in my review of the first Trolls, that this one would have to do something impressive with it’s plot to stop it being just a generic quest driven kids movie.  And it didn’t do that.  If this were the nineties, this would have been a straight to home video kind of deal.”

Linked above and wondering what would be the cool thing to do next? Commenting once in awhile is always good (I like reader and other blogger interaction). If you have the trackback/pingback come to your site then just approve it because after people read your review then they can come here and follow links and read someone else’s review. What comes around goes around and sharing is the ultimate “thank you!” on the internet.

Did I miss your review? Use the comments to tell me about your movie-related/review blog and I’ll follow. I like following movie-related blogs and pull quoting from my reading list as well as other new blogs shared, liked and discovered.

Happy movie watching!

How Soon Before Trolls World Tour is on PeacockTV?

Trolls World Tour ⭐️⭐️½

Am giving this movie a lot of post exposure, and for a good reason: it’s breaking the mold during the pandemic. It’s a $90+ million budget film with heavy product support and timed media buys that couldn’t be pushed off to a future release date as easily.

A big factor when it came down to putting Trolls World Tour in the home with whatever theaters were available: much of the global media buy had already been scheduled with promo partners (like Oreos) and consumer product commitments ready to go. Another interesting tidbit is how the Trolls brand found a great life in the streaming window post its life in cinemas: Netflix ran eight seasons of Trolls: The Beat Goes On. The franchise’s young fans were already at home.

‘Trolls World Tour’: Will The Movie Profit Off Universal’s VOD Experiment? – Deadline

A review collection of this movie is being worked on, so expect that soon. That will have more deep-dive, detailed thoughts from us on the movie itself. I will say this, our grandchildren enjoyed it. Their review barometer is quite different than ours, they like colors and music and don’t really want to be challenged too much by story to stay entertained.

As always, click on the title at the top of this post to read our non-spoiler review.

I noticed when I was sifting through the PeacockTV launch lineup list at Deadline, Trolls World Tour is listed as a “first pay window” movie title. I’m not sure exactly what that means (if you know, please leave me a comment below)? It sounds like it might be mean, and purely guessing, is that when the pay VOD rental window expires, then it will be coming to PeackcockTV first. Also mentioned are The Croods 2 (opening December 23, 2020) and Boss Baby 2 (March 26, 2021).

It didn’t take long for Disney to put Onward on Disney+, certainly well short of the normal 90 day no-streaming window. My guess, and it’s only that, is that as long as they are making decent $$ on VOD, they’ll just keep Trolls World Tour there, milking out that rental money. They might lower the price from $19.99 to sub $10 ($6.99 USD) as some sort of special. Heck, today would have been an awesome day — Easter egg pricing — drop it a little bit, $14.99 , $12.99 … something just for 24 hours, then back to $19.99.

It’s not my money, so I’m sure they’re monitoring every penny in VOD sales. The point is that for those with PeacockTV, the 24 million broadband internet subscribers that will get PeacockTV for $0 (ad-supported version), they can hang out and wait for Trolls World Tour to show up there at some point in the not too distant future. That could impact some rental VOD sales.

Those with young children? Won’t matter. The 48-hour window allows for multiple rewatches, which young kids love to do.

Trolls-themed Oreos, Sugar Cookie Dough, Fruit Snacks, More + Trolls World Tour VOD Launch

Trolls World Tours available for streaming on VOD ($19.99) as of 9pm PST 4/9/2020

I’m sure everybody reading has their Trolls Oreos and Trolls toothpaste ready. If you don’t then you should know these are essential products (lol).

There are Trolls Oreos, Pillsbury ready-to-bake sugar cookie dough, Betty Crocker fruit snacks and Trix cereal. There’s Trolls toothpaste to keep your teeth sparkling!

Trolls-themed products hit shelves before new movie hits internet | WTAJ – www.wearecentralpa.com

Paid my $22 after tax and our grandchildren took naps and are ready to stay up for showtime in a few hours. Looking forward to seeing those other musical lands, Poppy, Branch and friends!

Kudos to Anna Kendrick Promotion of Trolls World Tour as VOD Home Release

As most of us know by now, there is only one new wide release movie being released in these troubled times.

It’s called Trolls World Tour by Universal (see: Universal will break theatrical window with Trolls World Tour available for same day streaming).

I’m looking very forward to seeing this and yes, I’ll be paying the (presumably) $19.99 VOD to rent this coming weekend.

Remember that, moviegoers, because the studios could — and below I will argue should — release more movies intended for theaters while so many are home ready to watch them.

Check out what Anna Kendrick has to say on her official Twitter account about the new Trolls movie.

This. How to promote your upcoming movie. Every actor/actress should follow Anna Kendrick’s promotion playbook. If you can’t say something positive, then say nothing, especially in these times.

The actress makes it pretty clear that she’d prefer fans see the movie in the safety of their own homes. That sentiment seems to be at the heart of why studios are making decisions like this — and they can’t be easy decisions to make.

How Anna Kendrick Feels About Trolls World Tour Hitting Homes With No Theater Release – CINEMABLEND

Listen up, Tim Miller, Elizabeth Banks and others who didn’t know how to promote their new movies (see: How To Better Promote Your Next Films, Elizabeth Banks and Tim Miller), because this is the type of promotion that moviegoers want to see from creative people. We don’t want to hear your political or social views. We just want to hear you excited about however the movie is being released.

Kendrick could have gone into Debbie Downer mode and bummed us all out that the movie isn’t showing on the big screen, but no, she’s smarter than that. She realizes it’s nobody’s fault right now the theaters are closed. She’s excited that moviegoers can see it somewhere, somehow, someway. Huge props to her for the great attitude.

Should More New Wide Release Theater Movies Be Available on VOD?

Yes. Not the big tentpole movies, no, I understand delaying those because of the big budgets.

Go to Netflix or other streaming channels and cut deals, like: Paramount sharing The Lovebirds on Netflix, skipping theatrical release

(only problem with there is Netflix isn’t saying when this is being released)

No Time To Die should have been delayed, Fast & Furious, yes, Black Widow, yes. I don’t understand why A Quiet Place Part II was delayed. It wasn’t a large budget movie, at least as far as I know. It’s a sequel and could have tested the VOD marketplace as Trolls is going to do. It’s the perfect middle to lower tier movie with some good marketing juice to see how direct to home marketing would play out.

Also, there are a lot of movie fans out here hungry for new movies to watch. Fill the need. Stop saying you “have” to release on a big screen. You have a freaking captive market at home, a large market waiting right now. Delaying for months or a year or more if you don’t have a ridiculous budget (looking at you, $100 million budget club) is not servicing your customers.

In most businesses, this type of behavior is financial suicide. Take care of your customers, give them what they want.

Universal will break theatrical window with Trolls World Tour available for same day streaming

Simultaneous theater and home release streaming is coming April 10, 2020 with Trolls World Tour, “thanks” to the coronavirus, at the rental cost of $19.99.

The streaming is about the only thing that is guaranteed.

Universal’s “Trolls World Tour” will be the first movie it will simultaneously debut online and in theaters on April 10. Other films that are currently in theaters, like “The Invisible Man,” “The Hunt” and “Emma” will be available for a 48-hour rental as soon as Friday with the suggested price of $19.99.

Universal to release movies online while they are in theaters, starting with ‘Trolls World Tour’

Again, that is if the theaters are open again by April 10.

We’re in Las Vegas right now and it’s a real dead zone here, except for drive-thru, take out only food, grocery stores and gas stations. The casinos are saying they will start taking reservations again on May 1.

Again: May 1.

So, it might be a bit optimistic to think the movie theaters will be open again three weeks from now. We weren’t able to catch I Still Believe or Emma in theaters as planned here in Vegas before the theaters all closed, so going to have to catch those on streaming.

It’s too early to speculate if this Trolls Word Tour simultaneous release will be a one-off blamed on the virus, or the start of releasing more movies simultaneously in the theater and VOD (Video On Demand), but it’s definitely getting some buzz.

Theater owner groups disagree.

“To avoid catastrophic losses to the studios, these titles must have the fullest possible theatrical release around the world,” a statement from the National Association of Theater Owners (NATO) reads. “While one or two releases may forgo theatrical release, it is our understanding from discussions with distributors that the vast majority of deferred releases will be rescheduled for theatrical release as life returns to normal.”

Trolls World Tour could be a case study for Hollywood’s digital future

I’ve weighed in on this topic numerous times here and am a fan of reducing or even eliminating the theatrical window. Naturally, I didn’t want this virus situation to be a catalyst, but it might just be the thing that gets something started.

If I have a choice to pay $19.99 to watch at home or watch in the theater — if they are open — the theater is where I’ll be seeing it on April 10. Where will you be seeing it?

10 Movies COMING TO THEATERS in April 2020

NOTE: This post will continue to be updated until the end of April 2020, as movie release dates change, sometimes within weeks of the scheduled release date

UPDATE 4/11/2020: With the coronavirus pandemic, most theaters have closed and planned release dates have changed. A strikethru on the release date and/or title indicates the planned date has changed.

The following are movie trailers and my early thoughts for all films tentatively scheduled coming to theaters in April 2020.

If you’d like to see a list of all movies released in 2020 click here (that post will be updated throughout the year).

2020 Theater Releases
JAN | FEB | MAR | APRIL 2020

If you’d like to see a list of all movies released in 2020 click here (that post is being updated throughout the year). Most releases profiled below are WIDE screenings showing on 2,000+ theater screens in the United States. If the movie title has the word LIMITED following then it means it’s being released on less than 2,000 screenings in the United States.

All movie release dates unless otherwise indicated are for the United States, the release dates in other countries may vary.

April 2020 Movies

The New Mutants
[FIRST LOOK]

The New Mutants opens in theaters April 3, 2020 (no new release date announced)

The trailer makes me think of this as a darker X-Men spinoff, which is what it seems to be.

Anticipation for The New Mutants: 6/10

The Lovebirds
[FIRST LOOK]

The Lovebirds opens in theaters April 3, 2020 (Purchased by Netflix, no release date announced)

“Take… the grease!” — the funny part of the trailer, but no comedy can survive on the humor of one joke. I’m worried about the comedic chemistry between this couple based on the trailer, as they don’t seem to be all that funny together, although the situations they are placed in look humorous. Will this be another Like a Boss on the humor scale? Could be. I’m interested though, because I enjoy comedies.

Anticipation for The Lovebirds: 5/10

Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway

Peter Rabbit 2 official trailer – opening in theaters April 3, 2020 (moved to Jan 15, 2021)

Haven’t seen the first Peter Rabbit film, but this seems like it’s in that middleworld between children-friendly and adults. Trailer isn’t making me super excited for the movie. Was surprised to see it grossed over $350 million, which explains the presence of this sequel less than two years later.

Anticipation for Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway is: 2/10

No Time To Die
[FIRST LOOK]

No Time To Die opens wide in theaters on April 10, 2020 (moved to Nov 25, 2020)

The last Bond film for Daniel Craig, will he go out with a whimper or roar? I’m voting on somewhere in the middle. He’s got Rami Malek as a villain and that could amp everything up. I hope Bond doesn’t go off the rails into something completely unnoticeable after this. Just get another Bond (a guy, sorry, I don’t think it should be a woman playing James Bond 007). Then again, there is a female 007 in this movie. We’ll find out soon.

Anticipation for No Time To Die: 9/10

The Secret: Dare To Dream

The Secret: Dare to Dream opens in theaters April 17, 2020 (moved, no release date announced)

I remember seeing this book everywhere and wondering what the “Secret” was? In mid April I’ll find out. Could have always read the book, I suppose, but wasn’t that motivated. The teaser trailer is equally enigmatic and mostly just toting sales stats. While that’s impressive, I already knew it was popular. Guess I need to see a trailer showing something that actually happens in the movie to be excited.

Anticipation for The Secret: Dare To Dream: 3/10

Promising Young Woman

Promising Young Woman opens in theaters on April 17, 2020 (moved, release date TBA)

This trailer makes it look like the woman is hunting men by setup. She pretends to be too drunk and waits for them to take advantage of them and then does … what to them? Revenge is called out, but we don’t actually see any taking place. I’m getting a black widow spider vibe to this tale. Somewhat eager to see it.

Anticipation for Promising Young Woman: 5/10

Trolls World Tour
[FIRST LOOK]

Trolls World Tour official trailer #1

And now the second trailer:

Troll World Tour final trailer — opens wide in theaters April 17, 2020 (VOD released on April 10, 2020)

Our grandchildren are huge Trolls fans and must admit I like them, too. The sequel idea based on different tribes of trolls having a specific musical genre is sound, but I wonder why rock and roll always gets such a bad rap? It’s good music and I’d argue it’s better than some other types. Still, a troll tribe rolling around to the music of Ozzy Osbourne sounds like the making of a killer soundtrack at least. Looking forward to this.

Anticipation for Trolls World Tour: 7/10

Monster Problems — no trailer available to evaluate anticipation. Scheduled to open in theaters on April 17, 2020 (moved to Feb 21, 2021)

Antebellum

Antebellum opens in theaters on April 24, 2020 (moved, no release date announced)

After a string of bad horror films starting off 2020, my anticipation for this one is reduced. Then again, maybe this will be better because it’s following the sequel to A Quiet Place. It seems to be some kind of evil force based on or originating from slave catching times? Sort of has a more vengeful Harriet vibe going, but that could be totally off.

I cheated a bit and peeked at the Wikipedia page.

Successful author Veronica Henley finds herself trapped in a nightmarish reality and must find a way to break free of the horrors at hand.

Wikipedia for Antebellum

So, is this more of a Nightmare on Elm Street meets Harriet?

Anticipation for Antebellum: 3/10

Bad Trip
RELEASE DATE CHANGED from Feb 28 to April 24, 2020

Bad Trip official trailer – opening in theaters February 24, 2020 (moved, no release date announced)

Looks like reality TV gone wild. Sign me up! Will admit that I’ve never been a huge fan of reality TV, but there have been some shows (I liked Cops,The Osbournes and Gene Simmons Family Jewels and some others). The whole catch the audience real reactions to crazy scenes is often too gimmicky to hold my interest through a TV series, but in a movie maybe it will work. This one looks like it could be very funny, I just hope the trailer isn’t showing the best parts.

A little skeptical because they moved back the date. Most delayed films suggest production problems and/or negative initial screen testing. Haven’t heard that to be the case here, so we’ll see what kind of trip this is soon.

Anticipation for Bad Trip: 6/10

Ranking the April 2020 movies by anticipation (as of this writing)

  1. No Time To Die – 9/10
  2. Trolls World Tour – 7/10
  3. The New Mutants – 6/10
  4. Bad Trip – 6/10
  5. The Lovebirds – 5/10
  6. Promising Young Woman – 4/10
  7. Antebellum – 3/10
  8. The Secret: Dare To Dream – 3/10
  9. Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway – 2/10
  10. Monster Problems – no rating / no trailer

What movies in April 2020 are you looking forward to seeing?

FIRST LOOK: Trolls World Tour

Our grandchildren loved the first Trolls film and, must admit, I’m interested too after seeing the trailer for the new one coming out in April 2020. The second trailer was just released and provides more backstory on the six different Troll tribes, each belonging to a different type of music.

The second trailer released for Trolls World Tour

Here is the first trailer which took me by surprise with the familiar lick of “Crazy Train” by Ozzy Osbourne kicking off the villainous troll clan based on rock and roll!

Rock and roll with a bad name is a cliche and it’s somewhat disappoinitng that we’re teaching children that rock is bad in this movie. What would Mister Rogers say? Hopefully, by the end of this movie the evil rock and roll — championed by The Prince of Darkness Ozzy Osbourne — will somehow be converted to the sweet lovable trolls, so kids understand that all music is good, regardless of genre.