Theater owners, studios at odds over shrinking DVD launch windows
PHILADELPHIA, PA – It was not all that long ago that the time between a movie’s theatrical release and the date when a legitimate DVD of the film became available was about half a year. But that window of time is being increasingly shortened by the studios, and as a result, tensions are growing between the studios and exhibitors. Recently French theater owners closed their theaters for an hour in protest, and Sony reluctantly postponed the planned release of the DVD of the Michael Jackson documentary “This is It!” (which the studio had wanted in stores for Christmas) only after vociferous objections by exhibitors.
In a an article that recently appeared in the online journal of the the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, the issues involved are discussed as well as what the studios' attempts to maximize their profits may mean for theatrical exhibition. The whole article can be read here: http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article.cfm?articleid=2394