Fox embraces digitization, to stop distributing 35mm films within two years

MUMBAI: Bringing an end to 35mm film prints, 20th Century Fox has become the first major Hollywood studio to officially announce that it will distribute all of its films domestically in a digital format within the next year or two. bringing an end to 35mm film prints, according to National Association of Theatre Owners president-CEO John Fithian.

"Last year, I stood on this stage and predicted that domestic distribution of movies in the format of celluloid film could cease by the end of 2013. That prediction is becoming a reality," Fithian has reportedly said. "As a letter from our friends at Fox confirms, no one should rely on the distribution of film prints much longer.And we know that most other distributors share that belief," he added.


The CEO said that 27,000 US screens have been converted to digital, more than two-thirds of the total. He also promised that efforts to help smaller cinema operators convert to digital continue in earnest. The movement to digital is designed to cut down dramatically on print fees and projection costs.

Fithian and Motion Picture Association of America chairman and CEO Chris Dodd were speaking at a press briefing. Dodd suggested that the rift between Hollywood and Silicon Valley over recent online piracy legislation could solve itself without congressional input if the sides can come to an nderstanding.

He said that entertainment companies and technology firms could sign a memo of understanding whereby piracy sites are identified by certain means, but he didn‘t rule out another round of legislation that could be supported by both sides. He also conceded the consumer was left out of the discussion by the MPAA during the SOPA battle.

On the subject of premium VOD, both speakers said studios and exhibitors no longer are feuding over the topic and are working to find an acceptable compromise.

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