I subscribe to digital digest ‘live update’ and in it’s last release there was an item concerning the studio’s new dvd and bluray release timetables; now one is going to have to wait 8 weeks more for the dvd version of a movie to be released. here is the clip:
On to HD news, Paramount is trying a new thing that many studios in the past have tried and found little success: tiered releasing.
What this means is that instead of releasing all home video versions of the movie at the same time, they’re going to release only the rental DVD and for sale Blu-ray version of the movies first, with the for sale DVD version coming at up to 8 weeks later. Now the theory behind this is to promote both video rental and Blu-ray, both of which are growing markets for the studios, as opposed to DVD which is quickly dropping in sales. Studios have tried this in the past, with rental versions of DVDs that contained no extra features, followed by retail versions with the lot (usually a second disc). This kind of thing died quickly here in Australia, as people wanted to rent the retail version with all the special features and were willing to wait. Having the Blu-ray version in stores will help Blu-ray certainly, but it will also task the sales people with explaining to customers why they can’t buy the DVD version until 8 weeks later, which I’m sure will please the retailers who rely on DVD for 90% of their home video revenue. And with people unable to buy the version they want, how many will seek alternative sources, such as pirated versions (of the rental only DVD), and feel justified in doing so because they have been denied the opportunity to purchase the content. Guilt is probably the most effective deterrent to piracy, and Paramount’s move might effectively destroy this last barrier. It’s good thing then that Paramount aren’t doing this with all releases, possibly just the lower profile titles that people will only ever want to rent, not buy.:a