21 Sep Hollywood’s Online Movie Experiment Isn’t Paying Off
By Lucas Shaw
September 21, 2020 | Richard Lorber shifted his movie business to the internet as soon as movie theaters closed across the United States. Lorber runs Kino Lorber, one of the leading distributors of independent and foreign films. Sales surged at first, prompting most of his competitors and partners to join the movement.
Everyone from independent distributors to the biggest movie studios in the world has tried what’s called premium video-on-demand, releasing a new movie at home for a higher price than your average iTunes rental. Examples include “Trolls: World Tour,” “Bacurau” and, most recently, “Mulan.”
But like so many activities that seemed so great at the beginning of the pandemic – baking bread, virtual concerts and Zoom meetings – the novelty has worn off. Kino Lorber’s sales have slipped at least 30% since the beginning of the pandemic.
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