Netflix has been muscling further and further in on awards season fare in recent years. Last year, their Power of the Dog was an Oscar front-runner, as was 2018’s Roma, 2019’s Marriage Story and The Irishman, and 2020’s Mank. With the likes of Knives Out sequel Glass Onion heading to Netflix this year, there is some concern about these prestigious films getting a proper theatrical release.
This year’s Oscar hopefuls coming to Netflix include Noah Baumbach and Adam Driver’s follow-up to Marriage Story – White Noise. And the other movie that the streaming giant hopes will garner Oscar nomination is Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s Bardo. Iñárritu won Best Picture twice in a row – for 2014’s Birdman and 2015’s The Revenant.
Film lovers have been wondering if Glass Onion, White Noise, and Bardo will get a theatrical window before landing on Netflix in December, and how limited the cinema release will be, in terms of locations and how much time it will be available. At Venice Film Festival, Iñárritu reassured that Bardo will receive a limited theatrical run in Mexico and the US.
Speaking to Deadline, Iñárritu said; “This is something I really appreciate. Not only because I was supported and left totally free but they [Netflix] have been extremely generous in allowing people to experience this movie in a theatre,” he said. “This is something especially important for me and is an exceptional gesture from Netflix to me. Because I think this is a movie that belongs to this type of experience.”
Regarding streaming, Iñárritu said; “My generation has seen movies by great authors and when I was studying cinema – Bergman, Bunuel, Fellini – I saw all their movies on TV with terrible quality and VHS….what remains is our ideas. A movie is a movie. It is just a means. A cathedral for cinema. It’s a place where children are born.” He added that “you cannot go against the prevailing tide.”
Bardo will debut on December 16 on Netflix. Prior to landing on the streamer, it will play in movie theatres in Mexico starting on October 27, as well as select North American theatres from November 4.
While we wait for the release of Bardo, check out our guide to the best drama movies.