In a bit of news that could have a profound effect on the way movies are exhibited in the United States, a consortium of movie studios and major movie theater chains have reached a deal to establish delivery of movies to theaters via satellite.
The publication Satellite Today reported Friday that five major studios and the three largest theater chains- AMC, Cinemark and Regal- have struck a deal to formerly establish the Digital Cinema Distribution Coalition, which will allow movie theaters to receive feature films and other screen entertainment via satellite.
The deal will effectively put an end to the old system of rolls of film being fed into projectors, at least in major cinemas. The digital conversion process began in 2007, with full deployment expected by year’s end.
The change to satellite distribution certain has advantages in terms of efficiency. But the system has been known to fail- I’ve been to more than one movie showing that was delayed or cancelled due to a “corrupted download- it puts theaters on the hook for the purchase of expensive new equipment, and it gets away from the romanticism of celluloid through a projector.