(Washington, DC -- The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) today called on the movie studios participating in the early-to-the-home "premium" video on demand (VOD) experiment to release sales figures for the movies that have been offered on the platform.

The controversy around the shortened theatrical window involved in the early premium VOD offering has drawn intense interest in Hollywood, the trade and business press, and Wall Street. But has the early VOD offering drawn the interest of the consumer?

"What's an experiment without data?" asked NATO president and CEO John Fithian. "Every weekendusually before the weekend is overthe performance of movies at the U.S. box office is reported around the world. Studio executives are working the phones, touting the stellar box office for hit movies and explaining the underperformance of the flops. When it comes to premium VOD-crickets."

The movies released so far include Just Go With It (Sony), Cedar Rapids (Fox), and Hall Pass (Warner Bros.). The Adjustment Bureau (Universal) is scheduled for release this week. The movies are being released through DirecTV's Home Premiere at a price of $29.99 roughly 60 days after their theatrical debuts.

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Centennial, Colo. -- One of the most magical adventures in motion picture history is coming to the big screen this summer-bigger and better than ever-as NCM Fathom and Warner Home Video present The Lord of the RingsTM Motion Picture Trilogy Extended Edition Event. The Academy Award®-winning trilogy will be featured in an exclusive series of in-theater events in June, including The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingTM on June 14; The Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersTM on June 21; and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King TM on June 28, all beginning at 7:00 p.m. local time. During each Fathom event, theater audiences will view nearly[2] an hour of additional feature footage per film with additional and extended scenes that were carefully selected under the supervision of director Peter Jackson. In addition, fans will be treated to personal introductions to each film from Jackson, which were captured on the set of his current film The Hobbit, all making this an historic series that can only be experienced on the big screen.

Tickets for The Lord of the RingsTM Motion Picture Trilogy Extended Edition Event are available at participating theater box offices and online at www.FathomEvents.com. For a complete list of theater locations, prices and additional information, visit the Fathom website (theaters and participants are subject to change).

The Lord of the RingsTM Motion Picture Trilogy Extended Edition Event will appear in nearly 500 movie theaters across the country via the new digital cinema projection systems.

Jackson, currently busy on set directing The Hobbit, took a moment to share his thoughts on the upcoming The Lord of the Rings Extended Edition theatrical showings: "I am happy to bring The Lord of the Rings back up on the big screen, particularly these new presentations of the extended editions that have been remastered for high-definition. Making these films was a great experience and I'm pleased to be able to share them with fans eager to make a return journey to Middle-earth."

Out of the 30 total Academy Award nominations received, The Lord of the RingsTM Trilogy won a record 17 Academy Awards®: The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the KingTM (2004) won 11 awards including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and eight others. Based on the best-selling novels by J.R.R. Tolkien, Jackson's movie trilogy is an epic journey of men, hobbits, elves, dwarves and the rest of Middle-earth's creatures and cultures. The trilogy chronicles the struggle of good versus evil with fantastic special effects and a strong emotional center; capturing the enduring fellowship and ultimate sacrifice while enhancing the chaos and destruction of Middle-earth.

"The Lord of the RingsTM Extended Edition Trilogy is a visual masterpiece that returns to the big screen to be experienced the way Peter Jackson intended: with the additional feature footage for each installment," said Dan Diamond, vice president of NCM Fathom. "Combined with all-new introductions to each event by Jackson, the exceptional quality of digital cinema and the one-of-a-kind experience the movie theater offers, The Lord of the RingsTM Extended Edition Event marks a new landmark in cinematic history."

Warner Home Video will release all three of Jackson's epic adventures in their extended edition versions on June 28 as a stunning 15-disc trilogy, The Lord of the RingsTM Motion Picture Trilogy: Extended Edition on Blu-rayTM . The trilogy features all three Extended Edition films on Blu-ray with nine Special Feature DVDs, and over 26-hours of spellbinding behind-the-moviemaking material including the rare Costa Botes documentaries. Botes was given unprecedented access to the set of each production by Jackson and features in-depth behind-the-scenes film footage.

 

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Hollywood, CA -- Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corp.(NASDAQ: CIDM), the global leader in digital cinema, announced today that Jill Newhouse Calcaterra has joined Cinedigm in the capacity of Chief Marketing Officer effective May 1, 2011. The newly created role has Ms. Calcaterra reporting directly to Chris McGurk, Chairman and CEO of Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corp.

"We are entering a new and exciting era where Cinedigm can fully leverage the digital cinema platform for targeted distribution, research and alternative content," said Chris McGurk."Given her track record and relationships, Jill is the perfect person to guide Cinedigm's overall marketing initiatives and industry outreach."

"I'm honored and excited to be a part of the Cinedigm team at a time of amazing growth and evolution in the entertainment industry," said Ms. Calcaterra. "Having served as an advisor to the company for the last four years, I'm confident that we're clearly positioned to benefit from all that digital cinema deployment enables, including alternative content, precision marketing, research, software analytics and focused distribution."

In her capacity as CMO and member of the Management Committee, Ms. Calcaterra will manage corporate marketing, investor relations and public relations for all Cinedigm divisions, including the entertainment group, software, digital media services, UniqueScreen Media and digital cinema deployment.

Additionally, Ms. Calcaterra will manage the company's consumer-facing marketing and promotions programs for alternative content and special events. Recent releases by Cinedigm include the LIVE Foo Fighters documentary screening and 3D performance; the ground-breaking, worldwide LIVE 3D broadcast of the FIFA World Cup Championship; the BCS Championship in LIVE 3D; the Dave Matthews Band 3D concerts, and the sold out 3D PHISH concerts. Cinedigm also releases KIDTOONS, a weekly family friendly matinee series that runs in over 165 theatres across the country.

A twenty-year entertainment industry veteran, Ms. Calcaterra was Vice President of Marketing, Promotions and Partner Relations at Nelvana Communications/Corus Entertainment; Vice President of Marketing at PorchLight Entertainment, and gleaned extensive experience in the advertising world at Goldberg Moser O'Neill and Hoffman/Lewis. She has also been a trusted advisor to a number of internet start-ups, including Smartycard, Imbee, Everloop, and Simon Malls.

 

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Basingstoke -- On Tuesday, April 26th 2011, Sony Corporation and Showcase Cinemas Cardiff, successfully performed the first commercial screening in Europe on a fully-DCI compliant projection system.

In March, Sony Corporation announced that its Digital Cinema 4K projection systems were the first to successfully complete the full range of compliance tests for specifications required by Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI). Sony was accredited under the DCI specification for its "integrated projection systems." These systems are based on the ground-breaking Sony 4K projector that can present ultra-high-resolution images (8.85 million pixels, four times as many as 2K) and a server that can securely store digital cinema content and transfer it to the projector. Each of the Sony systems were certified as "a working system that can be fully deployed in theaters," according to DCI.

The new DCI compliant Key Delivery Message (KDM) structure must carry the projector thumb print certificate in addition to the server certificate, which is becoming the industry norm. This enhances the security of all digital content, allowing cinemas to meet the high DCI compliance requirement which the six major Hollywood Studios, including Walt Disney Company, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc., 20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures Corporation, Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc., and Universal Studios Inc. studios have agreed upon.

"It is with great pleasure that we announce that Sony Digital Cinema 4K has once again taken the lead in this industry," says David McIntosh, Head of Digital Cinema at Sony Europe. "We were the first to launch a 4K resolution projector, with 4 times the resolution of a 2K projector. We were the first to launch the "easy on the eye" 3D solution with our partner RealD. We were the first to pass the high standard DCI Compliance Security design projection system. Now, we have successfully screened fully DCI-Compliant content at our exhibitor partner Showcase Cinemas, in Cardiff - the first such screening in Europe."

Sony is currently the only projection manufacturer that offers a fully DCI-Compliant projection system which consists of a 4K resolution projector and a media block.

In the UK, Apollo, Showcase and VUE Cinemas are have signed up for Sony Digital Cinema 4K projection systems, meaning over 1000 screens will be capable of screening in DCI-Compliant 4K resolution once the roll-out is complete. Globally, Sony has a committed base of over 13,000 4K projection systems from leading exhibitors.

Sony is the leading VPF provider in Europe, with Apollo, Showcase and VUE Entertainment in Europe, and is in ongoing discussions with other key exhibitors.

 

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BURBANK, Calif. -- Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group today announced an agreement to acquire Flixster, the movie discovery application company with over 25 million worldwide users per month. The acquisition also includes Rotten Tomatoes website devoted to film reviews, information and news. Under the terms of the deal, Flixster will continue to operate independently and will expand its services beyond movie discovery to enable digital content ownership and delivery across any connected digital device.

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group will utilize the Flixster brand and technical expertise to launch a number of initiatives designed to grow digital content ownership, including the recently announced consumer application "Digital Everywhere." This studio-agnostic application will be the ultimate destination for consumers to organize and access their entire digital library from anywhere on the device of their choice, as well as to share recommendations and discover new content. The Flixster acquisition and "Digital Everywhere," combined with the Studio's support of the UltraViolet format are all part of an overall strategy to give consumers even more freedom, utility and value for their digital purchases.

"Driving the growth of digital ownership is a central, strategic focus for Warner Bros.," said Kevin Tsujihara, President, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group and Office of the President, Warner Bros. Entertainment. "The acquisition of Flixster will allow us to advance that strategy and promote initiatives that will help grow digital ownership."

Flixster is currently the number one movie discovery application on mobile platforms with over 35 million downloads to date, including Android, Blackberry and iPad, and ranks among the most downloaded of all iPhone apps. Rotten Tomatoes is one of the most trusted and influential brands in movie reviews with over 12 million unique visitors per month. Flixster and Rotten Tomatoes will remain fully independent. The Flixster team will stay in San Francisco and the Rotten Tomatoes team will continue to work autonomously in Los Angeles.

"We're thrilled that Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group shares our vision for how ‘anytime, anywhere' digital entertainment can become an amazing user experience," said Joe Greenstein, co-founder and CEO of Flixster. "We're excited that Warner was willing to make this kind of commitment to a leading independent consumer platform. We look forward to working with Warner as well as each of the other studios to innovate and build products that users will love."

 

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