It seems as though we’re once again toying with the idea of in home movie releases. According to an article from variety.com earlier last month, Napster mogul, Sean Parker, is backing up a new startup that offers consumers new releases in the comfort of their homes.
The Screening Room, acts as an anti-piracy technology which streams new releases from the included “set-top box”. Screening Room would charge consumers an initial $150 for setup and charge $50 per film. Exhibitors are projected to receive as much as $20 of the fee, while distributors would get 20%.
According to variety.com, Jeff Blake, former Sony Pictures worldwide marketing and distribution chief, is involved in the project as he has both studio and exhibition connections. Variety.com has also shared that Screening Room is working on closing a deal with one of the largest exhibitors, AMC.
In home movie releases seems to be a doubled edged sword for all parties involved. While there’s appeal to studios struggling with piracy online, exhibitors worry that signing an agreement could potentially hinder and already diminishing box office. Technology has unfortunately made newly released movies available illegally online within an hour of their release, which attributes to the continuous decline in attendance at theaters.
While the concept of being able to stream a movie, the day it’s released, from the comfort of your home is appealing, we’re not sure how practical it is. Variety shared a poll on their Twitter which asked followers whether or not they’d spend $50 to rent a new movie that same day it hits theaters, the results speak for themselves. When consumers can go and see a movie for $11 dollars at virtually any movie theatre, $50 seems like a rather steep price.
In home movie releases is certainly a convenient luxury, and in a society that eagerly chases efficiency and convenience, you’d think it would be a sure-fire win. Should Screening Room offer consumers a more justified price, I think more people would be receptive to the idea. Like everything in technology, it seems to be a waiting game, only time will tell.
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