Hollywood wants to offer $30 movie rentals next month

By on March 31, 2011, 5:41 PM
Would you pay $30 to rent a movie? Hollywood hopes that you will.

Late next month, a service called Home Premiere will allow consumers to view films on-demand two months after they exit theaters. This is before they're out on DVD, which is typically three months after leaving theatres (Netflix gets them even later). For the privilege of seeing such films earlier from the comfort of their own homes, viewers will be charged a mere $30 for a two-day or three-day rental, according to Variety (we checked, and the story was not published on April 1st).

Hollywood thinks that families will jump on the opportunity. Apparently, they will calculate the costs of paying for movie tickets for everyone in the household, possibly the need for hiring a babysitter, and the savings of not purchasing food and other concessions.

Warner Bros., Sony, Universal, and 20th Century Fox want to offer the service through DirectTV (20 million customers) and some Comcast markets (in certain cities for an undisclosed period of time). The Digital Entertainment Group, which helped Hollywood launch and brand Blu-ray, will assist in building the Home Premiere brand. The companies will initially offer films such as "Just Go With It," "Cedar Rapids," "The Adjustment Bureau," "Paul" and "Hall Pass."

Apparently, the idea is to offer flicks that have disappeared from theaters and have a large appeal among adults who didn't rush out to see it on the big screen. Studios believe those folks will pay a hefty sum to watch the movie at home. We're sure most would agree that $29.99 for a VOD rental is outrageous, but it's cheaper than paying theater admittance for a large family. Despite that poor value, theater operators seem concerned about the service as it could encourage some people to stay home.

We seriously doubt the project will be successful. On the bright side, hopefully this will move us closer to a future with shorter a window between theatrical and video-on-demand release.

User Comments: 37

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Raswan Raswan said:

Heartily agree with you Emil. No way this gets off the ground. 15$? Maybe, but in no way is $30 a smart price point. But, as you said, hopefully it reduces the time it takes movies to make it to dvd and bluray. We shall see. We shall see.

Guest said:

on the plus side the high quality rips will be available sooner

KG363 KG363 said:

For $30 I expect a bluray copy, a dvd copy, and a digital copy

howzz1854 said:

if they do simultaneous release, and make it $19 i'll pay for it. but it has to be blu-ray quality and HD sound tho. other than that... NOT in a million years. i don't even RUSH to go and get my netflix anyway. these hollywood big studios.... sometimes it amazes me that they're still stuck in the dinosaur age thinking. they really need to get out some more.

tacobfm said:

If you can pay 10 bucks to watch it in theatres, why the flying **** would you pay 30 bucks 2 months later?

Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

April fools!

Even the movie industry isn't that stupid.

Guest said:

19$ after a month from the theaters (where the hype is still strong) has more possibilities to success.

Guest said:

in costa rica i pay 3$ go to in cinema cinemark


war59312 said:

Rick said:

April fools!

Even the movie industry isn't that stupid.

Afraid it's no joke: [link]

And yea there are that stupid!!


I would not pay a dime....... who's brilliant idea was that ... What a stupid Idea... what a *****..

Naterz said:

I think Hollywood is trying to make up the money lost from Mars Needs Moms...lol

supertech supertech said:

Give me a break, what a rip off... this better be an April fool's joke


just put the new movie on dvd and seel it, dont even bother with movie theaters...

herpaderp said:

Guest said:

on the plus side the high quality rips will be available sooner

This :V

Cota Cota said:

oh! i get it, they need that much money so the actors pretend to have talent, count me OUT!

Guest said:

Funny article, they really think we're all suckers don't they?

Benny26 Benny26, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Even if it's not an April folls joke...They still have over 12 hours to say that in fact it was a joke and save some face.

$30?...What a joke!

Modena said:

I'd pay $30 if it means I can rip and seed that movie to 50k people. Which is whats gonna happen if this isn't a joke.

Saintnsinner said:

I'll wait for the DVD to come in the mail from Netflix. You can shove your 30 dollars up your arse Hollywood!

Guest said:

You are insanely stupid if u pay anymore than $9 to rent a movie. I see some of u saying u would pay 15 to 20, but not 30?!!! U all are retarded. Im sorry. Im not even the rude type of person but anything above 9 bucks is stupid. And 30 DOLLARS?!!!! So they think people are willing to wait for it to leave theaters where they gould have paid 9 or so bucks to watch it at home for 30 bucks? HUH?

Guest said:

Maybe a week after Theaters for that price but 2 months?? More reasonable would be $9.99. Why do they force piracy upon themselves?

cyriene said:

This idea is completely stupid. Way too much money. Hollywood just isn't every going to come to terms with reality

MrAnderson said:

Costing more than Movie ticket... going over our own Internet lines that we pay for... No one better bite! If anything it should be a premium on a pay perview cost.

The truth is I think they are expecting low numbers on this. They don't want to volumize on this so they put the price up so only people with great disposable money might bite. If the price was low, they might stall DVD sales. This the only logical reason I can think. And if they can trick enough people into this, we might be in trouble. So lets all hope this crashes and burns the little tupays off the top execs that though this one up.

MrAnderson said:

Wait... if this is an April fools joke... you are not allowed to post fake news... they day before... it doesn't count!

Mizzou Mizzou said:

Absolutely absurd, assume they're looking for a way to cover declining attendance at the box office. Might mean the movie studios have finally figured out that there is a relationship between their outrageous ticket prices and attendance.

MilwaukeeMike said:

i could see this working for families. Good for a movie night, and the kids can watch it again the next day. No junk food, no soda, no popcorn, no travel, no getting there late. You can pause it so the parents can actually watch it to instead of running kids out to the bathroom. Movies are $10, that means if you have two kids you'll come out ahead. And if it's not huge, who cares? i doubt this'll take a lot of $$$ to get started, it doesn't have to make a killing to be worth it.

'Yeah, but you can get all those benefits you mentioned above with a $3 rental that came out a couple months earlier. You're really gonna pay $27 more to watch it a couple weeks sooner?'

Oh yeah.. forgot about that. April Fools!

Guest said:

First thing that popped into my mind :)

supportme said:

Guest said:

on the plus side the high quality rips will be available sooner

Thats the spirit..

Guest said:

Next to the dumbest idea of the century. The dumbest idea goes to Obama for whatever **** he's coming up with next week!

fyrfaktry fyrfaktry said:

Whoops. Forgot to quote. :-S

Guest said:

on the plus side the high quality rips will be available sooner


Guest said:

Even if this does get off the ground, It's another way for people to get pirated movies faster. What better way than to have it on your tv. I'm sure it's not that hard to capture the video. One month earlier for pirated decent copies. Not bad.

Guest said:

after all i am happy to see that all the movie studio execs still have their heads deeply planted inside their rectums...

gingerbill said:

it seems to crazy to not be an april fools but your the fools if it is for doing it outside of april 1st . If true it's mental.

DriverJ said:

kg363 said:

For $30 I expect a bluray copy, a dvd copy, and a digital copy

Agreed. to pay $30 for a rental is insane. You can get more than a month of netflix for that price. If with the rental I were sent the Bluray/DVD/Digital edition of the film when it released I would probably do that for more movies. In my area there are "cheap" theaters where after a movie is out of mainstream theaters these places usually have it for something like $2.50/ticket until the movie is on DVD so people can still get a chance to view it on the big screen.

What is the studio smoking.

Mizzou Mizzou said:

Just got home from Best Buy with a copy of the new Tron for $24.95; includes 2D & 3D Blu-Ray, Digital Copy and DVD discs. Think it was worth the wait and seems to me a much better alternative than shelling out $30 for two day viewing rights. Hopefully, this latest offering from the movie industry falls on its proverbial caboose.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

OK, this is why I can't state vigorously enough that streaming movies is the worst idea anybody ever had. When DVDs are outlawed, only outlaws will have DVDs.

Conceding to streaming video puts entirely too much power into the hands of the studios.

If anything as stupid as this got off the ground, it would only embolden the MMPA and the studios into price gouging the likes of which you've never seen.

I'm a patient man, I'm going to allow Redbox to fulfill all my movie needs for the foreseeable future.

That is, unless too many imbeciles jump on this bizarre bandwagon, and ruin it for the sane people.

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