Smile is already one of the year’s biggest horror hits thanks to its surprise success at the box office — which is one reason it isn’t streaming yet (unlike Halloween Ends’ day-and-date release on Peacock). But because Smile was released by Paramount, there’s a good chance it could be on its way to Paramount Plus soon. (Sorry, Netflix and HBO users.) As with most new releases, it’s likely to hit VOD services for rental or purchase first, but then it should arrive on Paramount Plus, where subscribers can stream the movie.
While Paramount hasn’t announced the official date of the Smile’s streaming release just yet, we have more than a few clues based on the company’s current theatrical agreement. During the pandemic, Paramount announced that its movies going forward would have a 45-day window of exclusivity. A number of big releases, like Scream earlier this year, have followed this pattern down to a T. This would put Smile’s streaming release around Nov. 14. But as the last year has also proven, there’s no guarantee it will hit that date.
In fact, Paramount has tended to keep movies in theaters, and off streaming, long past 45 days if it feels the films can still make money at the box office. The most prominent example of that so far is Top Gun: Maverick, a movie that was first released on May 27, but still hasn’t made it to Paramount Plus. And with good reason: Maverick still sits in the top 10 at the U.S. box office almost five months after it was released — and it’s already the fifth highest-grossing movie of all time in the United States.
With all that info in mind, it seems likely that Paramount could wait a few weeks or even months after the initial 45-day window to bring Smile to streaming. The horror movie is still going strong at the box office, even with competition from blockbuster horror films like Halloween Ends. And based on its current trend, the film, which was reportedly shot for $17 million, will likely cross the $100 million domestic mark before ending its theatrical run. In other words, it’s probably in Paramount’s best interest to keep it in theaters as long as it’s still performing, but there’s plenty of reasons to think Smile will hit streaming in time to make Thanksgiving excessively creepy.