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Do You Believe That Simultaneous Distribution Should Be Adopted By Everyone In The Movie Industry?

890 words - 4 pages

Simultaneous Release is the name given to an experimental new method of making movies available to consumers. I have to say that, while I can certainly see “the big picture” (no pun intended) from both sides of the fence, I would have to say that I do not think that simultaneous release should be adopted by everyone in the industry.The traditional model of film distribution generally starts in theaters, then pay-per-view, then home video, then pay cable networks such as HBO, and finally broadcast television. The time from beginning to end used to be around 6 months, now it’s closer to about 4 months. This traditional model is being challenged by film producers who are testing ...view middle of the document...

This release strategy's chief advantage to consumers is that consumers may choose how and where they will watch the movie.A key financial benefit for distributors promoting independent movies that have smaller budgets is that they need only spend on one marketing campaign, rather than separate campaigns for each release window.The chief opposition to simultaneous release comes from cinema owners who expect to be disadvantaged financially from the loss of their exclusive windows. Commenting on simultaneous release in January 2006, John Fithian, president of the National Association of Theater Owners, said "It's the biggest threat to the viability of the cinema industry today." (Gentile 2006) Fithian also disputed the theory that simultaneous releases would deliver more revenue to studios: "If Comcast is offering a movie for $30 and someone invites 10 friends over to watch it at a house party, you've potentially lost 10 cinema sales with one video-on- demand sale."Opponents of simultaneous release on other grounds include director M. Night Shyamalan, who believes movies will lose their "magic" if they don't play in cinemas. Shyamalan calls simultaneous release "heartless and soulless and disrespectful." (Devin 2006) The sentiment was echoed by Peter Brown, the chief executive of AMC Entertainment, who claimed that reducing films to direct-to-video products would amount to "crass commercialism." Exhibitors are especially frightened of this development, as many feared that they would eventually lose their exclusive release windows for more mainstream films such as Harry...

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