As is the case with a lot of streaming services out there, HBO Max subscribers have access to a wide variety of original content alongside movies and TV shows that originally premiered/aired elsewhere. On the film side of things, HBO Max has been delivering movies you’ll only find on the platform since An American Pickle, which premiered a little over two months after HBO Max launched to the public. However, it turns out that this Seth Rogen movie, along with five other HBO Max movies, have been quietly taken off the service.
Just like Netflix and Hulu, each month HBO Max announces what movies and TV shows will be added to the service during the following month, as well as what will be leaving during that period. But in the case of An American Pickle, Moonshot, Superintelligence, The Witches remake, Locked Down and Charm City Kings, there was no prior warning. These six movies have simply been taken off HBO Max over the last several weeks without any fuss, although they can still be purchased or rented through third-party VOD platforms. Variety also reported that the House Party reboot, which had been slated to hit HBO Max on July 28, has been taken off the 2022 release calendar.
Besides it being unusual that Warner Bros. Discovery did not let the public know ahead of time that these six movies would be leaving HBO Max, the fact that they were taken off at all is weird. Granted, there are various Warner Bros.-related movies that have come and gone from HBO Max over the years, including DC movies like Man of Steel, but when it comes to movies exclusive to a streaming service, you can usually count on that staying on said service… well, forever! This move is an especially unfortunate one for Moonshot, as the Cole Sprouse and Lana Condor-led sci-fi romantic comedy has only been out since March 31.
Variety speculated in its report that these six movies being taken off of HBO Max could be part of Warner Bros. Discovery’s move to “get streaming-content payment obligations for underperforming titles off its books.” To that end, it’s worth mentioning that in the case of An American Pickle, Locked Down and Charm City Kings, those features were acquired by HBO Max rather than originated from Warner Bros. or New Line Cinema, so perhaps there was some money still being exchanged in order to keep them on the platform beyond the original payout. As for the House Party reboot, since it’s an unreleased movie, Variety posited that it could be used as a “tax write-down, which is reportedly what’s being done with the now-scrapped Batgirl movie and Scoob! Holiday Haunt.
There are still a handful of HBO Max-exclusive movies available to watch on the streaming service, including No Sudden Move, Kimi and the latest take on Father of the Bride, as well as plenty of HBO Max shows. However, should there be any other surprising removals from the platform, CinemaBlend will pass that information along.