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  • And The Oscar Goes To... iTunes


    Gone are the days in Hollywood when major film studios and production companies would use the good old postal system to ship DVDs of Oscar nominated films to Academy voters. These days, studio executives and Hollywood's promotional titans are capitalizing on the accessibility of iTunes to deliver nominated films to Academy and Screen Actors Guild voters.

    As the LA Times reported this week, tens of thousands of DVDs of movies - those that are still playing in theaters - "are sent by Hollywood studios to Oscar, Golden Globe and other awards voters." That process, however, is in the midst of drastic change. And this year's Academy Awards ceremony reflects exactly that.

    With concerns over film piracy at a fever pitch, Hollywood at large is hoping to dramatically reduce the number of films that are illegally copied, bootlegged, or wrongfully shared and distributed online - a phenomenon that industry analysts say continues to negatively impact theater-ticket and DVD sales.

    Ahead of the Screen Actors Guild awards on Sunday, Fox Searchlight this month became the first studio to have nearly 100,000 SAG voters view new movies such as "Black Swan" through a free download from Apple Inc.'s iTunes store. Paramount Pictures, Focus Features and other studios did the same later with movies such as "The Fighter" and "The Kids Are All Right." In all cases, downloads are set to expire 24 hours after being viewed and are not available to the public.
    According to the LA Times report, studios may print warnings - or outright legal threats - on the custom movies that "instruct viewers to destroy the DVDs and not distribute them," but such warnings are rarely heeded - at least not before the flicks get "passed around to family and friends." As a result, Sony Pictures' chief technology officer, Mitch Singer, says his studio - a major one at that - will be among many this year to wind down the use of "physical screeners." iTunes will be the alternative.

    LA Times
    This article was originally published in forum thread: And The Oscar Goes To... iTunes started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 14 Comments
    1. n80r's Avatar
      n80r -
      yep i just watched black swan from iTunes because of sag
    1. StealthBravo's Avatar
      StealthBravo -
      I didnt even know they were offering these. Too late now
    1. steve-z17's Avatar
      steve-z17 -
      Wish I would have known about this earlier!
    1. feidhlim1986's Avatar
      feidhlim1986 -
      I love Oscar season. All the good movies are available before they hit Cinemas in Ireland.
      I run a Cinema so I wouldn't pay to watch movies anywho

      The iTunes screeners are pirated too, and are 720p rather that dvdrips
    1. Sem656's Avatar
      Sem656 -
      Wouldn't this make them easier for more people to get?
    1. obtrunco's Avatar
      obtrunco -
      What a bunch of paranoid idiots.
    1. naveeed's Avatar
      naveeed -
      Oopppss.... Missed.
    1. se23's Avatar
      se23 -
      With concerns over film piracy at a fever pitch, Hollywood at large is hoping to dramatically reduce the number of films that are illegally copied, bootlegged, or wrongfully shared and distributed online - a phenomenon that industry analysts say continues to negatively impact theater-ticket and DVD sales.


      NO its the price of a Cinema ticket that does that! Nearly 30 to watch Narnia with two children under 5! I walked out the cinema mate!
    1. feidhlim1986's Avatar
      feidhlim1986 -
      Quote Originally Posted by se23 View Post
      NO its the price of a Cinema ticket that does that! Nearly 30 to watch Narnia with two children under 5! I walked out the cinema mate!
      Was that 3D by any chance?
      It's more the film studios fault for the rising prices. They are progressively upping the percentage of the ticket price that they take. They average at taking 50% of the ticket price, many are moving to 55% and 60%. Fox took 70% for the first two weeks of Avatar.
    1. CynicalDriver's Avatar
      CynicalDriver -
      Quote Originally Posted by feidhlim1986 View Post
      Was that 3D by any chance?
      It's more the film studios fault for the rising prices. They are progressively upping the percentage of the ticket price that they take. They average at taking 50% of the ticket price, many are moving to 55% and 60%. Fox took 70% for the first two weeks of Avatar.
      I think that's what he was talking about. In the US, when I was a kid, it was $4.50 for kids prime-time, now it's $7 for matinees!!

      Adults used to be $6.50, now it's over $10.

      THEN after getting railed at the entry, it's $20 for two SMALL sodas and A popcorn. Maybe if they reduced prices to somewhere tolerable, sales would pick back up, but it shouldn't be over $100 to take a family of 4 to the movies.
    1. Samcole28's Avatar
      Samcole28 -
      I know this is COMPLETELY off topic but I am having trouble loading my apps on my iMac. A good majority of my apps in my dock like Pages, iPhoto,iMovie, Aquisition, Handbrake, etc... When clicked on they just bounce once and do not open. I have tried running Permissions in Disk Utility but the repair option is not available. HELP PLEASE!!!
    1. EskimoRuler's Avatar
      EskimoRuler -
      Quote Originally Posted by CynicalDriver View Post
      I think that's what he was talking about. In the US, when I was a kid, it was $4.50 for kids prime-time, now it's $7 for matinees!!

      Adults used to be $6.50, now it's over $10.

      THEN after getting railed at the entry, it's $20 for two SMALL sodas and A popcorn. Maybe if they reduced prices to somewhere tolerable, sales would pick back up, but it shouldn't be over $100 to take a family of 4 to the movies.
      your completely right, you would think that if prices went down then they would sell more and possibly make more but who knows what they are thinking
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Quote Originally Posted by CynicalDriver View Post
      I think that's what he was talking about. In the US, when I was a kid, it was $4.50 for kids prime-time, now it's $7 for matinees!!

      Adults used to be $6.50, now it's over $10.

      THEN after getting railed at the entry, it's $20 for two SMALL sodas and A popcorn. Maybe if they reduced prices to somewhere tolerable, sales would pick back up, but it shouldn't be over $100 to take a family of 4 to the movies.
      Keep in mind wages and salaries are also going up so you are making more money. In that YOU make more money, guess who else makes more money, studio workers, sound engineers, etc. So that being said, studio expenses go up and the increase has to be funded by someone. Without profits the studios go out of business and we don't get to enjoy movies any more. Ticket sales also go to installing new screens, keeping theaters clean, renovations, maintenance, etc.
    1. CynicalDriver's Avatar
      CynicalDriver -
      Quote Originally Posted by alexevo View Post
      Keep in mind wages and salaries are also going up so you are making more money. In that YOU make more money, guess who else makes more money, studio workers, sound engineers, etc. So that being said, studio expenses go up and the increase has to be funded by someone. Without profits the studios go out of business and we don't get to enjoy movies any more. Ticket sales also go to installing new screens, keeping theaters clean, renovations, maintenance, etc.
      I understand how economics work. I argue for that point all the time, when people say that something only costs $0.13 to make, but costs the consumer $6 to buy it....

      HOWEVER, there's a limit. Eventually you reach maximum capacity, and sales go down as a result, thereby forcing prices to go even higher; which, again reduces sales. Sometimes the most profitable thing to do is lower prices.