The summer movie season is finally winding to a close, but Paramount is making one last play for the contents of your pocketbook by announcing special double-feature showings of Star Trek Into Darkness and World War Z this week, and this week only. The price of one ticket will get you into both movies at participating AMC Theaters, Regal Cinemas, and other theater chains, good through this Thursday, September 5.
You can check to see if the double-feature is showing anywhere in your area at Paramount’s Ultimate Double Feature website. It is definitely a limited engagement, but if you’re in a major city chances are it’s probably available near you. (For reference, I’m in the Dallas area and it’s showing at one theater here.) The deal applies to 3D and 2D versions of the movies, depending on the theater.
While both movies have their passionate fans and detractors, Star Trek Into Darkness and World War Z are definitely both flicks that benefit from being seen on the big screen. These are movies that traffic in spectacle, and spectacle just isn’t nearly as spectacular when it’s unfolding on the screen of your laptop, or even a decent-sized TV. Hell, even if you only want to see one of the two, it’s still a decent deal in this age of skyrocketing ticket prices. But if you get caught theater-hopping after you watch the one you like, remember to carry some extra cash to bribe the usher.
While this sort of “second engagement” isn’t unheard of in the movie world, it turns out Paramount has a very specific reason for putting together this late-season double feature. World War Z proved damn near everybody wrong this past June by becoming an unexpected box office monster, so far taking in $198 million in the States and $518 million worldwide. Badass Digest reports that Paramount is hoping this double-feature will push World War Z above the $200 million domestic mark, which would be a nice victory to hold over the naysayers, and which also (and more importantly) would allow Paramount to charge more money for the TV rights when the networks come circling. As for Star Trek Into Darkness, it’s already crossed the $200 million threshold, currently sitting at $277 domestic and $453 million worldwide.
You know the old saying: every time a movie passes $200 million domestic, a studio executive gets his wings. And also a dump truck filled with cash delivered to his doorstep.
It’s also worth noting that Damon Lindelof worked on the scripts for both movies, infamously being brought in to fix World War Z’s third-act problems. The zombie film deviated massively from the beloved book by Max Brooks. Star Trek Into Darkness was the second installment in J.J. Abrams’ rebooted Trek universe, and upped the troll factor even further by redoing Khan. If only Paramount could figure out a way to harness the pure fanboy hatred inevitably directed at this double-feature, we could all give up on fossil fuels by the end of the week.