Fox makes first anti piracy film PSA in US

LOS ANGELES: Hollywood may have broken box office records last year by raking up over nine billion dollars in terms of revenues but the pirates continue to have a field day.

Not only are films aired in theatres being shot by the pirates with digital cameras but it has now come to light that DVDs are being copied. It is also not uncommon to hear of instances where the latest releases are being illegally downloaded on the Net. To spread awareness about the deadly beast, 20th Century Fox has unveiled a one minute 12 second Public Service Announcement.

It is the motion picture industry's first anti-piracy theatrical PSA and brings people from the different strands of the industry together. Besides stars like Ben Affleck, the film also features concession-stand workers, security guards, and animal wranglers. The mesage being put forth is that piracy threatens the bread and butter of ordinary decent people.

Fox has reached agreements with major motion picture exhibitors to play the PSA in theatres across the US, including the world's largest, the Regal Entertainment Group.

20th Century Fox chairman Jim Gianopulos said, "Piracy is the single most critical issue facing our industry today. A generation of kids that would never steal a DVD from a store feels no compunction about downloading illegal copies from the internet. Our industry must bear some of the responsibility for educating people that stealing is stealing - regardless of the form."

The PSA has generated support from all the studios of the Motion Picture Association of America and will become an important element of the MPAA's comprehensive piracy education campaign. It is the first in a series of anti-piracy messages that will be produced for use in theaters; on TV and cable networks; on DVDs and VHS; at industry screenings and premieres; in the classroom; and at many other venues.

In India the issue will be dealt with at next weeks FICCI FRAMES Convention in Mumbai. VP, Motion Picture Association Intl Michael Ellis will talk on IPR & Legal: Giving the Owner his Due.

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