Poorly recorded, pirated versions of Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” leaked online last week. Both are camcorded copies of negligible quality — at least one has Korean subtitles and another has German subtitles. It is unclear how widely seen the illegal copies of the sci-fi thriller were, but it comes as theaters are starting a major campaign to bring audiences back to cinemas, which have been largely closed for months due to coronavirus.
Disney and Fox’s “The New Mutants,” which opened domestically and internationally last week, was also pirated.
Warner Bros., the studio behind “Tenet,” has moved aggressively to try to have pirated copies of the film taken down. The adventure film was released in several foreign territories last week, including South Korea, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany. It grossed $53 million, an impressive figure given the fact that some audience members likely steered clear of multiplexes due to public health concerns.
When “Tenet” opens in the U.S. this week, it will only be available in markets where theaters have been allowed to reopen. That means that it may not be able to be screened in Los Angeles and New York, two of the main sources of box office revenue. However, early ticket sales in markets where cinemas are open appear to be strong.
It’s not unusual for major Hollywood releases to be pirated days, and even hours, after they debut in theaters. As TorrentFreak notes, “a movie’s big piracy boom comes when the first high-quality copy appears online.” That does not seem to have happened in the case of “Tenet.”
“Tenet,” an espionage thriller that also involves time travel, stars John David Washington, Kenneth Branagh, Robert Pattinson, and Elizabeth Debicki.
Spokespeople for Warner Bros. and Disney declined to comment.