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Hollywood Studios and Theater Chains Still Hate Sean Parker’s Premium In-Home Theater Experience

The proposed service is struggling to gain traction.

Movie Theater

Napster is long gone, but Sean Parker isn’t. Last year he divided Hollywood with the announcement of Screening Room, a new streaming service that allows users to watch movies still in theaters without leaving their home. A new Business Insider report suggests that, as the new premium video on demand (PVOD) venture seeks to gain traction, many in the industry remain skeptical about its long-term prospects.

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“It seems to me it’s often an individual company that comes along and believes it has figured out how to make all the money in the theater space,” said Barbara Twist of Art House Convergence. “Personally, I have yet to see a new version that ensures that everybody keeps making the amount of money currently being made.”

The service would cost $50, of which $20 would go to the film’s distributor and as much as $20 would go to a participating theater chain. Screening Room would take 10%, or $5. Some in the industry believe that something like the proposed service (if not Screening Room itself) is inevitable, though they can’t agree on who it will be or how it will work.

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Several point to iTunes as the service most likely to capitalize on this opportunity. “I think iTunes is the logical choice,” said Jeff Bock,  Exhibitor Relations’ senior box-office analyst. “It’s what everybody has, and if the price point is right, Screening Room is cut out. Nobody needs them. And to build that infrastructure with Screening Room would take a long time. Screening Room has a really tough hill to climb.” Read the full article here.

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