Village Roadshow Entertainment Group, co-producer of "The Matrix Resurrections," filed a lawsuit against Warner Bros., claiming that the film production company’s simultaneous release of the movie on HBO Max and theaters breached contract.
In a suit filed in the Los Angeles Superior Court on Monday, Village Roadshow also alleged that Warner Bros., owned by AT&T Inc. unit WarnerMedia, had moved the film's release date to 2021 from 2022 to help HBO Max attract more subscribers.
The lawsuit pointed to other box office winners, such as "SpiderMan: No Way Home," released in late 2021 without a simultaneous streaming release.
"We have no doubt that this case will be resolved in our favor," a spokesperson for Warner Bros. said.
Warner Bros. had announced in late 2020 that its entire slate of movies for 2021 would be available in theaters and on HBO Max on the same day.
The news underlines growing tensions between entertainment players as media companies sharpen their focus on their streaming platforms at the cost of traditional distribution platforms.
Last year, actor Scarlett Johansson got into a legal dispute with Walt Disney Co. over the "Black Widow" film after the company offered the movie on its subscription streaming service Disney+ at the same time it was playing in theaters.