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Thursday, February 09, 2006

From the BBC: `Digital film: Industry answers'

As I posted about earlier, the BBC offered the opportunity for you to send in your questions for a panel of movie industry bigwigs, including the heads of the Motion Picture Association of America and the National Association of Theatre Owners. They've posted seven questions and answers here. Among them, `What's the point of DRM?' ... `Was the video recorder damaging?' ... and two questions about simultaneous release.

Here's a snippet on that topic:

    John Fithian, president of the National Association of Theatre Owners:

    `We do not believe that simultaneous release would actually offer consumers a meaningful choice. Quite the contrary, simultaneous release would cripple the cinema industry, and for many people, their cherished choice to view a new (or old) film away from home, on the big screen, would vanish.

    Moreover, an exclusive theatrical window confers panache and a marketing edge on a film that would likewise vanish in a simultaneous release regime. Then you're talking 'television movie of the week' - a sad diminution of cinematic art, and thus, again, a disservice to consumer choice. '

    Curt Marvis, chief executive of CinemaNow:

    Yes, I can imagine such a time. That said, I think it is still several years off and a question of 'when' rather than 'if'