Comcast, DirecTV, and Vudu have inked a deal with four major Hollywood studios to offer a premium video-on-demand service that would allow customers to stream titles 60 days after theatrical release. DirecTV will be the first to launch the service at the end of April, but Comcast and Vudu will follow soon thereafter.
According to The Hollywood Reporter’s insiders, Warner Bros., Fox, Sony, and Universal are “all on board” with the service. Movies will be available for 48 hours after they’re purchased at $29.99. The Hollywood Reporter says that the first movies to be available will likely be Just Go With It, Cedar Rapids, and Unknown. Meanwhile, Fox Searchlight titles will only be available 60 days after their nationwide release dates.
DirecTV is expected to offer the service to all of its customers, while Comcast and Vudu will initially test it in select markets.
Hollywood is hoping that the new premium VOD service will help with the decreasing sales of DVDs, which was once one of their bigger sources of revenue. But the $30 price tag is concerning many in the industry who believe customers aren't willing to pay that amount. Other issues include concerns of piracy; Paramount isn't participating in the service because of it.