This weekend, what’s being billed as the last Paranormal Activity film will hit theaters, but you may not be able to see it. Why? Because Paramount Pictures is doing something different with the release and theaters aren’t happy.

These days, most major theatrical releases don’t hit On Demand for a few months after release. However, with Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension, Paramount plans on putting it On Demand in about six weeks and theaters are pissed. So pissed, this film will only be on about 1,400 screens when it opens Friday, as opposed to the roughly 3,000 that the five previous films have opened on. That will, obviously, impact its theatrical gross but the studio is hoping it’ll make it up once it hits On Demand.

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What does this mean for you? Well, it means it’s going to be harder to find in theaters. And theaters will be the easiest place to see it in 3D, which is the big selling point of this “final” installment. For the first time in the franchise, the movie was made in 3D so that “you can see the activity,” according to the poster.

This is the first step in a plan Paramount has been talking about for a few months. The plan is to team up with AMC Theaters and release films on-demand mere weeks after they all but leave theaters, hence the six or seven week estimate here. It’ll happen first with Paranormal Activity, later with Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse—and obviously, many theaters aren’t happy about this. The theater count for the latter movie, which opens October 30, hasn’t been revealed yet.

[The Hollywood Reporter]


Contact the author at germain@io9.com.

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