Online Video Steven Kippel on 13 Feb 2012

Disney ready to implement DVD rental window

Disney ready to implement DVD rental window

During a recent quarterly conference call with investors, Disney CEO Bob Iger mentioned a potential strategy of imposing a 28 day window for DVD and Blu-ray Disc releases at retail before making them available for rental.

While I’m sure the movie studios do their own market research, I’m not sure what these windows actually accomplish. The stated goal is to hold up retail sales of newly released DVDs and BDs, but I just don’t know how this strategy works. If I’ve waited 6-9 months to watch a movie instead of seeing it in the cinema, why do I care if I have to wait another 28 days to rent it? Are there enough people so excited to watch the movie that they’d rather purchase it instead of renting it?

Furthermore, rental agencies don’t even have to abide by these agreements if they purchase the movies through retail instead of through wholesale. Unless the studio is looking to boost their retail sales by forcing rental agencies to buy their movies at Target, this seems like a nonstarter. The studios probably even make more on their wholesale business than at retail!

Iger admitted the strategy wasn’t a panacea during the same call, noting the other studios who have implemented the policy were “not seeing any effect from these dollar-rentals on their sell-through business.” But in spite of the reality that this doesn’t do anything to help retail sales, Iger still justifies the position citing industry-wide declines in disc sales.

Other studios to implement the window include Warner Bros., Universal and Fox.

Source: LA Times

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