Movielink Launches First U.S. Electronic Download-to-Own Service for Major Motion Pictures, Marking Important Milestone in Digital Distribution of Movies
|-- Movielink Inks Deals with MGM, Paramount, Sony Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox, Universal and Warner Bros. to Offer Movies for Purchase, Including Titles Day-and-Date with DVD Releases|
“The studios are embracing the Internet as a viable distribution platform for their movies, and providing this service will also help to convert Internet pirates into legitimate customers”
-- Universal Studios' Brokeback Mountain Is First Major Title Released on Movielink on Same Day As DVD Release on April 4, 2006; Other Major Titles Available for Purchase Beginning on April 3, 2006 Include King Kong, Good Night, and Good Luck, Walk the Line, Memoirs of a Geisha, Hustle and Flow, and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Movielink (www.movielink.com), the leading broadband video-on-demand (VOD) service, announced today a major expansion of its service, enabling consumers to buy movie downloads online in addition to renting them for 24 hours. Signifying a major step forward in the evolution of broadband VOD, Movielink signed deals with major Hollywood studios to deliver movies from MGM, Paramount, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox, Universal and Warner Bros. Beginning today, consumers can now create their own permanent digital library of films, which can be viewed on up to three PCs, transferred to a DVD (in Windows Media format) for backup, and streamed around the home via home networking.
Universal Studios' Academy Award-winning Brokeback Mountain is the first major title to be released on Movielink day-and-date with its DVD launch on April 4, 2006, with Sony Pictures' Fun with Dick and Jane, starring Jim Carrey, to follow a week later as the next day-and-date release. Movielink also makes available to own other major 2006 DVD releases, including King Kong, Good Night, and Good Luck, Pride & Prejudice, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Get Rich or Die Tryin', and Walk the Line. Classic titles are also available to buy, including East of Eden, The Sting, To Kill a Mockingbird, Die Another Day, Office Space and Breakfast at Tiffany's.
"As a pioneer in this space, Movielink has consistently delivered an affordable, high quality and easy to use VOD service, so it is only fitting that Movielink is the first to offer this revolutionary expansion of consumer options, including the ability to buy major studio releases online day-and-date with DVDs," said Jim Ramo, CEO, Movielink. "We're committed to developing the Movielink service so our customers get the highest viewing value, more technological options, greater convenience, deeper selection of content, and availability of titles in earlier windows."
Movielink has divided its Web site (www.movielink.com) into two "stores," with a common home page. The two storefronts function just as the Movielink original "Rental Store" operated, but the license to view a movie obtained from the "Purchase Store" allows for unlimited viewing. The movie may be permanently stored on the hard drive to create a permanent archive, or burned to a disc in Windows Media format for backup or playback on up to two additional tethered computers. The movies can also be downloaded to a notebook computer for traveling. Using a Media Center Edition PC, consumers can stream their copy of the movie to a TV set connected to a media center extender or Xbox.
Since the launch of Movielink in 2002, one of its goals has been to support an effort across the entertainment industry to thwart piracy and protect the intellectual property of content providers. Movielink is working closely with studios to meet consumer demand for downloadable, major studio releases while aggressively protecting the rights of the owners of these releases.
"The studios are embracing the Internet as a viable distribution platform for their movies, and providing this service will also help to convert Internet pirates into legitimate customers," said Ramo. "Movielink has carved out a position in the broadband market as the place to come for high quality long form entertainment, and we intend to continue to expand consumer options as the Internet delivery of movies becomes a significant channel of distribution."
Movielink (www.movielink.com) 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.
MOVIELINK LAUNCH STUDIO QUOTE SHEET WARNER BROS. Kevin Tsujihara President, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group "The priority at Warner Bros. is the consumer, and our focus is on ensuring that our product is available on as many platforms with as much flexibility, functionality and portability as the consumer desires. As a company, Movielink has its roots with the studios and has shown an extraordinary respect for the consumer experience, our product and the digital rights management of that product. It is logical and timely that Movielink would now offer an electronic sell-through service, truly taking them to the next level of digital distribution." UNIVERSAL Rick Finkelstein President and COO, Universal Pictures "This new and exciting way of delivering our film and television product to our customers furthers Universal's goal of providing consumers with our content whenever, however and wherever they want it. We are pleased that Brokeback Mountain is the first major studio release available for purchase electronically on Movielink the same day as its DVD release. This is an example of how download to own compliments the traditional home entertainment distribution channels." PARAMOUNT Tom Lesinski President, Digital Entertainment Group "Consumers are quickly embracing digital downloads as an effective method of purchasing content online, and we want to be able to meet that need in the marketplace. Movielink has spent the last three years developing a compelling movie download service, and we are pleased to be part of the launch of their Purchase Store." SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT Ben Feingold President of Worldwide Home Entertainment, Digital Distribution and Acquisitions "Movielink's revolutionary new service offering is enabling Sony Pictures and the entire Hollywood community to provide consumers with more choice and convenience for the purchase of movies and it serves as a fine complement to our traditional packaged media sell-through business. Technology is opening new doors of distribution for media companies, and we are excited to be part of introducing this concept to the industry with Movielink." MGM Blake Thomas Executive Vice President and General Manager of Home Entertainment Distribution "The launch of electronic movie ownership is a momentous step for the industry, and we are committed to offering consumers the flexibility and convenience to download and purchase our titles on broadband VOD. Today Movielink is introducing a new form of digital distribution that will impact the entire industry and benefit consumers throughout the country." TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX Peter Levinsohn President, Digital Media & Pay Television Twentieth Century Fox "Twentieth Century Fox is committed to meeting the demands of today's movie consumer, and we are excited about the opportunity to offer our films for permanent digital download. As the broadband footprint continues to expand, it is vital that our industry embrace new modes of distribution. We are thrilled that Movielink is driving this evolution, and that our Academy Award-winning film, Walk the Line, is among the first films that will be available."