It's long been rumored that movie studios are looking to bring new releases into your living room while they're still in theaters (or before they come out on DVD). That appears closer to fruition, as the studios have been in talks with pay TV operators like Time Warner Cable and DirecTV about offering newer flicks on demand, with trials possibly starting this fall.
Don't break out your microwave popcorn yet. These "new" movies will still have been in theaters for 30 days before reaching your TV, so don't confuse "new" with "just released." Other titles may start being available 60 days after they've been in theaters.
Then there's the matter of pricing. Films that have been out 30 days will cost $50 to view from the comfort of your home, while slightly older flicks will be available for $24.99. The studios will probably point out that a family of four going to the movies typically spends more than $50 when you factor in concessions with ticket prices. Still, there's a huge psychological barrier to dropping $50 all at once, especially for a movie that may already be gone from theaters and flushed out of your memory (until it comes out on regular on demand for $4.99). Plus, you really need a roomful of people watching in order to make the economics work to your benefit.
Disney CEO Bob Iger says that "There are people who we believe would like to see movies sooner than later and would pay a premium price to do that." A couple of months from now, he may be able to put that theory to the test. Will he be proven right?
[Via Yahoo News]