If you live in Atlanta GA or Portland OR, you’ll be able to watch the new Eddie Murphy/Ben Stiller movie in your house for $59.99 — while the movie is still in theaters and months before it would normally be available for video-on-demand rentals. Wall Street Journal
You might be thinking it sounds like a cool concept, while simultaneously thinking that nobody would pay $60 for it. And by you I mean me.
Anyway, Universal Studios is using its new release “Tower Heist” to tinker with the concept of “windows” in movie releases and pricing. We are accustomed to paying different prices for a new release in theaters, a video-on-demand rental, a DVD from Redbox, Netflix by mail, etc. It’s just a matter of how bad we wish to see something, how soon, and how much we want to pay.
To which you might say “yeah, but sixty bucks?”
Time Warner, Sony, Comcast and Fox tried this a while back. Their experiment cost $30, which might conceivably be a bargain for the typical movie night when you think about gas, parking, babysitter, two tickets, etc.
But sixty? What do YOU think? I think it’s ironic that an experiment that comes into your home and takes a lot of money involves a movie about going into a home and taking a lot of money. Here’s the trailer for Tower Heist.
UPDATE: Trouble’s brewin’… not surprisingly, theater owners are pitching a fit.
Further Update: Idea already dead?