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CLASSICAL  March 2009

CLASSICAL March 2009

Subject:

Warner Releases Films from Its "Attic"

From:

Janos Gereben <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Moderated Classical Music List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 31 Mar 2009 17:01:47 -0700

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (69 lines)

   http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/8423ac7c-1742-11de-9a72-0000779fd2ac.html

   Warner offers classics on DVD and download
   
   By Kenneth Li in New York
   March 23 2009
   
   Warner Brothers will on Monday launch a service that makes
   available hundreds - and eventually thousands - of
   out-of-circulation classic movies and television shows for
   downloading and on DVDs as Hollywood studios seek new markets
   to offset a decline in DVD sales.  ...  The Warner Brothers
   Archive Collection service will allow consumers to download
   or buy DVDs of movies such as Possessed, starring Clark
   Gable and Joan Crawford, and Once Upon a Honeymoon, which
   stars Cary Grant and Ginger Rogers, for the first time since
   DVDs made their debut in 1997.
   
   The service was developed during the past two years by
   creating a DVD publishing process that is cheaper than
   conventional DVD systems, which company executives said
   were costly and required a minimum order of 15,000 to 20,000
   copies.
   
   The new system, which is called "manufacturing on demand,"
   is designed for smaller publishing runs and involves using
   a lower-cost printing process for DVD covers.
   
   "We have developed this new methodology to monetise more
   of our assets," said George Feltenstein, senior vice-president
   of theatrical catalogue marketing at Warner Home Video.
   
   "It is very expensive to put a movie on DVD through traditional
   [means]," he said.
   
   Warner's launch comes as weaker DVD sales have caused
   panic in Hollywood. New-format Blu-ray disc sales have yet
   to take hold and thereby take up the slack.
   
   DVD sales in the US dropped 15 per cent in the fourth quarter
   of last year. Shelf store space dedicated to DVDs has also
   been crimped by the closure of big chain retailers such as
   Circuit City.
   
   Time Warner, Warner's parent company, has dabbled with
   offering vintage programmes for viewing on the internet in
   the past few years, including the In2TV service launched
   by its AOL division in 2006.
   
   It also offers a system, on a small scale, which allows
   consumers to order film DVDs at store kiosks. At today's
   launch, 150 titles will become available with 20 more
   television programmes and movies to be added each month.
   By the end of this year, 300 titles will be available,
   according to the company.
   
   DVDs will cost $19.95 each and downloads will be available for
   $14.95 per title. Warner Brothers' new online store can be found
   at http://www.wbshop.com/Warner-Archive/ARCHIVE,default,sc.html.

Janos Gereben
www.sfcv.org
[log in to unmask]

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