Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (SPHE) today announced that the studio will launch its digital sell-through business on April 3. Partnering with Movielink and CinemaNow, the service will allow broadband Internet users in the United States the opportunity to download-to-own for the very first time a wide range of entertainment content from the SPHE and MGM collective libraries.
SPHE’s digital sell-through business will commence with an initial slate of 75 titles that will include such films as Memoirs of a Geisha, Spider-Man 2, Taxi Driver, Barbershop, and Hitch. Dirty will be SPHE’s first day-and-date title when it debuts on April 4. The hit comedy Fun with Dick and Jane will release day-and-date on April 11.
In addition to offering new release titles day-and-date with DVD, SPHE will release additional titles from SPHE and MGM’s library monthly. The combined Sony Pictures and MGM libraries of more than 7,500 titles are believed to be the largest, most digitized collection in the business.
Movielink is an online movie download service offering U.S. broadband customers an extensive selection of recently released films and classic movies covering every genre, from action, comedy, drama, family and romance to sci-fi, horror and thrillers. The service is owned and operated by Movielink, LLC, a joint venture of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Universal Studios and Warner Bros. Movielink content offerings are drawn from the current releases and vast libraries of those studios as well as from those of Walt Disney Pictures, 20th Century Fox and leading independent studios.
Considering the market, technologies and the revenues that will benefit from, I’m sure that Sony made their plans regarding this agreement.
But let’s take a look at some statements:
“This is a landmark development in the evolution of home entertainment,” said Mr. Feingold (President of Worldwide Home Entertainment, Digital Distribution and Acquisitions ). “Allowing consumers to download and own movies digitally via their broadband Internet connections gives them more power to be entertained when and how they choose.”
“Our goal is to continue to provide engaging entertainment content in the most innovative, convenient and secure manner possible,” Mr. Feingold continued. “This partnership with Movielink and CinemaNow is just the first step in a bright future for digital delivery that will only serve to complement our packaged media sales business.”
“We are pleased to offer consumers a new option in movie ownership,” said Jim Ramo, CEO of Movielink. “Together with day-and-date release along with DVDs, digital delivery provides the convenience, flexibility and quality that movie fans have been asking for. Movielink has carved out a position in the broadband market of being the place to come for high quality long form entertainment, and this new consumer option continues to differentiate our service from other forms of VOD.”
“Launching our download-to-own business with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment marks the tipping point which we’ve been waiting for. CinemaNow has always believed that the ability to sell studio movies at the same time they are released for home video would be the catalyst for explosive growth in our industry,” said Curt Marvis, CEO of CinemaNow. “Now our customers can download and own the movies they want, when they want, with the convenience of on-demand access.”