When Netflix announced that it was developing Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 2, there was a lot of surprise. Netflix has been hitting original television programming pretty hardcore (and striking gold on several occasions, I might add), but this was a major step forward. The decision to release it day-and-date in theaters and on Netflix was a bold move, if nothing else, and many theaters revolted.
Amazon, which has just announced its own plans to release original films under its Amazon Studios banner, will not be putting up a fight. The films that they release (twelve “prestige” movies per year, they say) will be theatrical releases originally but wind up on Prime Instant Video 30-60 days afterwards. Considering how much longer it usually takes for films to end up on these services, it’s something, but I would love it if Amazon took a stand alongside Netflix to fight the big theater chains.
Regardless, this is an interesting move, and it will be fascinating to see what comes of it. Promising the equivalent of a movie every month is some serious commitment, and that will be a pretty massive undertaking, even assuming that each film will be reasonably low budget (which is probably (but not definitely) a fair assumption). The man heading things up is Ted Hope, whose company produced Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (which is pretty funny, if you think about it). And while he has apparently won a whole bunch of producing awards at Sundance, I expect he’ll have a bit less creative control when he’s overseeing so many projects simultaneously.
Either way, this is definitely a positive. More studios putting out original movies can never be a bad thing, and whether the films ultimately end up being “prestige” quality, I am interested in seeing what the company can come up with.
Full press release below.
|Amazon to Produce Original Movies for Theaters, Prime Instant Video|
Production to begin in 2015 with the goal of bringing customers a dozen original, prestige movies each year
Movies will launch in theaters and come to Prime Instant Video 30-60 days after theatrical premiere
“We look forward to expanding our production efforts into feature films. Our goal is to create close to twelve movies a year with production starting later this year,” said
Amazon Original Movies creative development will be led by independent film visionary
“Audiences already recognize that
About Prime Instant Video
Amazon Prime members can enjoy tens of thousands of TV episodes and movies with Prime Instant Video, Amazon’s video subscription service, via the Amazon Instant Video app on Fire TV,
About Amazon Studios
Amazon Studios most recently debuted its dramatic comedy
Amazon Studios has also announced four additional, original series to debut in 2015, including Michael Connelly’s
Amazon Studios launched in 2010 as a new way to develop feature films and episodic series—one that’s open to great ideas from creators and audiences around the world. Anyone can upload a script online and
Comprehensive cast and crew information, including bios and filmographies, is available on Amazon’s IMDb (www.imdb.com), the world’s most popular and authoritative source for movie, TV and celebrity content.