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Tuesday, December 06, 2005

New content and pricing on iTunes; Soderbergh Q&A

- The Unofficial Apple Weblog says that NBC content has started to show up on the iTunes Music Store, and at price points higher than the $1.99 we've seen so far. (Conan O'Brien's one-hour 10th anniversay show is priced at $9.99.) That's interesting, given that in the past, Apple has resisted allowing record labels to charge more or less 99 cents a single.

- Wired's Xeni Jardin has a phenomenal Q&A with director Stephen Soderbergh. Three questions from that conversation (taken out of sequence):

    WIRED: Why did you decide to release `Bubble' [Soderbergh's next release, coming in January] in all formats at once?

    SODERBERGH: Name any big-title movie that's come out in the last four years. It has been available in all formats on the day of release. It's called piracy. Peter Jackson's `Lord of the Rings,' `Ocean's Eleven,' and `Ocean's Twelve' - I saw them on Canal Street on opening day. Simultaneous release is already here. We're just trying to gain control over it.

    WIRED: What's the reaction in Hollywood to your release experiment?

    SODERBERGH: People are waiting to see what happens. A movie that costs only $1.6 million doesn't have to be a cultural event to turn a profit.

    WIRED: What's the biggest impact technology is having on filmmaking?

    SODERBERGH: When the changeover from film to digital happens in theaters in five or 10 years, you're going to see name filmmakers self-distributing. Another thing that really excites me: I'd like to do multiple versions of the same film. I often do very radical cuts of my own films just to experiment, shake things up, and see if anything comes of it. I think it would be really interesting to have a movie out in release and then, just a few weeks later say, "Here's version 2.0, recut, rescored." The other version is still out there - people can see either or both. For instance, right now I know I could do two very different versions of `The Good German.'


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