“The Square” is playing in New York and Los Angeles theaters. The short theatrical run will qualify the film, an award-winner at the Sundance and Toronto film festivals, for Oscar consideration.
Netflix tried earlier to get into the first-run film distribution business with its indie label, Red Envelope. Several notable documentaries and independent films were co-produced by Netflix when it was just a DVD-by-mail business. But the company shuttered Red Envelope in 2008.