Enemy of the State of Things

I always feel like somebody's watching me ...Whoops! With all the TIFFery, I nearly forgot to post a link to my latest Sympatico/MSN DVD column, which focuses on “The Lives of Others” and (to a considerably lesser degree) “After the Wedding”).

In other disc news, the New York Times is reporting that Paramount’s HD DVD exclusivity has an 18-month term limit … and, by the way, the studio will receive “about $150 million in financial incentives” for throwing its support behind the red team.

Oh, and the Digital Bits is reporting that yesterday’s announcement came as something of a surprise to Paramount’s own people, as well as to certain film directors who are, er, kind of ticked at the discovery that their movies won’t be available on their own format of choice.

Whoops. Although, by definition, anything that puts the kibosh on Michael Bay’s “Transformers 2” has its upside.

5 thoughts on “Enemy of the State of Things”

  1. Where was all the scandal when Disney, Fox, and Lionsgate received similar incentive packages for going exclusive to Blu-ray? I’d like to know how much money changed hands to convince Fox to start announcing titles on the format again.

  2. But, see, those studios were not dual-format to begin with. It’s one thing to accept a deal for exclusivity before releasing any titles, another altogether to unceremoniously dump a format you’d always supported. I would’ve felt similarly sorry for the HD-DVD adopters had Paramount gone the other way and accepted a bribe from Sony to dump *their* competitors.

  3. I see no difference between whether the studio was previously exclusive or previously supported both formats. The fact is that neither format is turning a profit for the studios. If Paramount really did receive an incentive payout for going HD DVD exclusive, good for them. That would be the first real income anyone has made since the format war started. Business is business.

    Don’t kid yourself that Sony hasn’t made similar offers to Universal and Warner to dump HD DVD and go Blu-ray exclusive.

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