The company will provide day-and-date home entertainment to match cinema releases
A few years back, some folks in Hollywood tried to kick off a day-and-date release for home entertainment and cinema releases, and it was met with some harsh resistance by cinema chain owners.
Essentially, some movies would be made available for home viewing on the same day as they would be released in cinemas, but with theatre owners losing out not only on the ticket sales but also the concession stand sales, it was quickly squashed.
Now a new company - The Screening Room - has started up, back by Facebook and Napster's Sean Parker (the guy Justin Timberlake played in The Social Network), and they are starting the conversation again, and apparently a lot more people are listening this time.
They will sell customers a viewing box at $150 each, with each new release able to rent for $50 each, available to watch once over a two-day period. So that means, for example, on the day Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice is released in local cinemas, you can also be watching it - in full HD and entirely legally - at home.
So what's in it for the cinemas who would be losing those ticket buyers? According to Variety, as much as 20% of each individual renting price will go to cinema chains, with 10% going to The Screening Room, and the remainder going back to the movie distributors.
Also, with every $50 rental, customers would receive two tickets to that movie in a cinema of their choice, which would give theatre owners the opportunity to sell on the popcorn and soda and sweets they'd otherwise miss out on.
While box office has been steadily climbing - 2015 saw the numbers raise past $11 billion for the first time in history - the actual number of tickets sold has remained practically unchanged, with the raising box office accounted for by increasing ticket prices.
Some cinema chains have previously denied to screen any movies that were made available on home entertainment within 90 days of their initial cinema release, but with movie piracy continuing to eat into their profits, and home entertainment systems becoming more and more cinematic, perhaps The Screening Room's plan will be seen as the way forward for movie distribution.