WarnerMedia Leadership on ‘Dune: Part 2,’ Discovery Merger Progress and Why ‘Ted Lasso’ Isn’t on HBO Max
On the eve of AT&T’s third-quarter earnings report, WarnerMedia’s top leadership invited Variety to the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank for an open-ended conversation about where the co…
“I’m not breaking news today,” Sarnoff said. But the team is more than happy with the $130 million the film has grossed internationally. Kilar pointed out enthusiastically that the film has yet to open in North America, China, or the U.K.
“We’re really, really happy with where we’re at 14 days in,” he said. Sarnoff did illuminate what factors will determine whether a sequel eventually gets the go-ahead.
“The story in itself sets up for a sequel. The production is so amazing and the storytelling is so compelling that it’s not going to be judged on box office alone,” Sarnoff said, explaining that the green light will be based on “the entirety of what ‘Dune’ can do for the company, including HBO Max.” She also noted that the box office has not fully recovered from the pandemic, which is changing the way the studio is assessing the future box office potential of its movies.
“We’re not doing our ultimates in green lights the way we used to,” Sarnoff said. “You have to kind of consider the circumstance that we’re in now, and project to a more normal circumstance.”