Deadline is reporting that The Weinstein Company has moved up—again—the moment that Quentin Tarantino’s heart is fated to break—that is, the date that the director’s lovingly crafted The Hateful Eight will be subjected to the cruel binary manhandling of digital movie projectors, instead of the bespoke 70mm machines Tarantino has invested so much money and energy in getting his blood-soaked drama aired upon. But while Tarantino would presumably prefer his film to live on forever in its current roadshow format—or possibly touring the country city-to-city in a wagon, like an old-timey magic lantern show—the time has apparently come for The Hateful Eight to get its wider release, two days earlier than initially planned. The film will begin showing in digital format tomorrow, December 30, with pre-shows beginning later tonight (although the roadshow screenings will continue as planned). Presumably, the digital release of the film will omit the various little flourishes—the opening overture, the 12-minute intermission, the printed program—that marked the movie’s roadshow treatment as something special, leaving behind merely an incredibly ambitious movie about the broken promise of America, as told through Tim Roth’s ridiculous mustache.
The move-up is presumably a response to the success of the roadshow; despite sporadic, possibly inflated reports of problems with screenings, Tarantino’s new film had a relatively massive opening weekend, earning $5.6 million despite playing in only a hundred theaters around the U.S. And while those aren’t Star Wars numbers—the Force continues to flow strong in wallets everywhere—it was apparently enough to make Harvey Weinstein hungry to get Tarantino’s Western noir in front of as many holiday moviegoers as he can, formatting quibbles be damned.