Godzilla vs. Kong and Dune were two of the biggest box office hits of the past two years in spite of all the pandemic-born challenges. The Legendary Entertainment projects didn't just contend with a global issue either. They also had to deal with Warner Bros. Discovery and its insistence on releasing its blockbuster films both in theaters and on its streaming platform simultaneously.
This practice has apparently led to a falling out between both Legendary and Warner Bros., as the former now has signed a new deal with Sony Pictures Entertainment.
Legendary CEO, Joshua Grode, emphasized the importance of its new deal with Sony to the company's theatrical goals in the official announcement (via The Hollywood Reporter), stating:
Sony’s commitment to theatrical distribution aligns with our vision of how to best derive the most value for Legendary’s movies. The incredible slate of movies that Mary Parent has amassed are built for the theatrical experience, and we are excited about our partnership with Sony for this next phase of Legendary’s growth. We are also grateful to Warner Bros. Pictures who has been a valuable partner to Legendary over many years, and we look forward to continuing our work with the talented executives at Warner/Discovery.
Warner Bros. will continue to distribute Dune: Part Two when it premieres late next year. It's very likely the former partners will honor the original distribution deal for the still-untitled sequel to Godzilla vs. Kong, which premieres in March 2024. But, after the two movies are out, all bets are off. Sony may distribute future Dune and MonsterVerse projects. Who knows? The MonsterVerse could crossover into Sony's Spider-Man Universe and vice versa in the future.
Having said that, Warner Bros.'s film distribution practices during the COVID-19 pandemic came under fire. Christopher Nolan infamously shopped Oppenheimer around because he didn't like the direction his long-time partner took with Tenet.
The report clarifies that Sony and Legendary didn't formally agree on a co-financing deal but this may be an option in the future.
Sony is currently busy expanding the Sony's Spider-Man Universe as well as the live-action adaptation of its video games and the animated Spider-Man films. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse will premiere on June 2 followed by Kraven the Hunter on October 6. Finally, it's believed that Tom Holland has struck a deal with Sony and Disney to return for another trilogy.