Hollywood Studios Might Launch $30 Movie-Renting Service Next Year

The studios plan to would work in conjunction with Comcast and Apple.

August 23, 2017 5:00 am

Love movies, but hate going to a crowded theater right when they’re released?

Hollywood studios, in conjunction with Comcast and Apple, are developing a delivery system for premium titles so that they would be available 30-45 days after debuting in theaters.

One likely scenario, according to The Hollywood Reporter, would be that customers pay $30 to rent a movie for 30 to 45 days after its release. This is on the lower end of the spectrum, reports The Hollywood Reporter. There were suggestions of making a movie available for $50 after 17 days, but the longer wait for a lesser price could help “soothe the frayed nerves of theater owners,” and attract more customers.

Pitch Perfect 3
Rebel Wilson and Anna Kendrick in Pitch Perfect 3 (Universal Studios)
Photo Credit: Quantrell D. Colbe

Some platforms will be involved as well, including other major cable providers and digital players. The goal is to “saturate the marketplace.”

Amazon, Apple and Comcast must strike deals with individual studios, and they all must agree on the price point. Year-end holiday movies could be released if this launches early in the year, like Pitch Perfect 3, Greatest Showman on Earth or Bastards.

Sources say that at least three studios need to be involved. “No one will come out of the gate unless the majority of the industry is involved,” said one studio executive to The Hollywood Reporter. “There is safety in numbers.”

The Greatest Showman
The Greatest Showman staring Hugh Jackman and Zac Efron (Twentieth Century Fox)

It could get tricky if theaters decide to boycott every PVOD title, writes The Hollywood Reporter, especially at a time when “exhibition stocks are getting battered on Wall Street because of a miserable summer at the box office.” Theater owners have been decrying early movie releases for years as the downfall of theaters. The Hollywood Reporter says exhibitors will want the studios to agree to keep the “PVOD window the same for five or 10 years, as well as the traditional 90-day window.”

One insider said to the Hollywood Reporter: “I’ve never seen anything so complicated in terms of getting this boulder up the mountain.”

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