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Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Ronald Epstein, Sep 4, 2013.
Ain't that the truth.
And he is prepared to engage with us on HTF.
I'm not arguing for unlimited releases, and I'm not doubting his knowledge of how the collectors market works. I fully understand that the 3000 number gives the studio a guaranteed amount up front as well as limiting TTs liability if a title doesn't sell great guns. But if a title like Christine sells out in less than 24 hours, then that is the market stating that 3,000 was not enough. Now there is no way of knowing ahead of time what the demand is, so it would seem pragmatic to me, from a business standpoint to have a contingency plan in place when demand exceeds supply. If title x sells out within 24 hours, then license another 500 or 1000. Its more profit for the studio, i don't think they would be upset. Its increased sales for TT, who has stated that selling out titles keeps them in business, and it keeps fans happy. I'm suggesting a limited additional run, with strict sales requirements, to meet demand if a particular title exceeds expectations. This sounds like good business to me. TT limits their runs to limit their liabilities, not to make their product more prestigious. If anything, their current model increases value on the secondary market, but that's a whole different debate.
Great interview. I hope Twilight Time continues to release titles that have been unavailable on home video since VHS, or Laserdisc. That to me is the biggest draw for them. I've given up on the horror titles from them though. I'm usually at work when the pre-orders go active, so I never get to participate in that circus.
I would think that Twilight has considered this suggestion after Fright Night sold out. Ran the numbers or brought the suggestion up to Sony but it just did not work out for some reason or another. Those guys really seem to know what they are doing.
Anyone who has ever been in this game, whether CDs or Blu-rays, learns as they go. Nick and Brian are very smart, but they learn as they go. At the beginning it was just going to be DVDs. I said loudly that they needed to investigate Blu-rays and as soon as that became a possibility they did. This model worked for CDs and it's working for them for Blu-rays. The market is the market. Everyone sits at home and reads some articles and thinks they know the market but unless you're in it, you can't. I do limited edition CDs - most are 1000 units. Some sell out instantly, some take a while. The times when I've thought a title might warrant 1500 - sometimes they have and sometimes they have the reverse effect - everyone suddenly assumes they have all the time in the world to make a purchase and one ends up not even selling what they would have had they just done a lower number. It's a weird psychology. If they'd done 5000 Fright Nights, they'd have probably sold around 3500 by now, but not 5000.
Everyone asks why would Sony let out Sleepless in Seattle to TT, that if Sony put it out at fifteen bucks it would somehow mean huge sales. They said that about Fright Night, too. But as I've said many times, here's what the scenario would be: Let's say they get lucky and ship 7500 units of Fright Night - not sure they would but let's say they do. Let's say the list price is twenty bucks, which means they're wholesaling for a lot less than that, at least thirty to forty percent. Now we enter the mentality that says, well, I'll wait till it's in the ten-dollar bin. So, those 7500 units sell maybe 1000 to 2000 while the rest sit there. The stores can then do one of two things - return them for full credit, or work out a deal and then put them in the ten-dollar bins. Maybe they sell another 500 there, but all those people who said they'd wait until it hit the ten-dollar bin now say, wait, I'll just wait until it hits the five-dollar bin. At that point Sony has lost its entire investment in the title, plus they'll still probably get returns. That, whether folks like it or not, is the way this market works and its why many of the majors are licensing out their titles to a variety of labels.
With Twilight Time, Sony is guaranteed a certain amount of money, they are guaranteed no fuss, no muss, no bother, no returns, no ten-dollar or five-dollar blow-outs, nothing. No sweat, in and out - clean as a whistle. Twilight Time takes all the risks and believe me there are risks. I'd ask any TT critic to come in here and tell me the total number of TT time releases verses the total number of sold out titles. It's not that pretty of a picture. So while some of the handful of sold out titles is irksome to those who didn't act quickly, there are those other titles that have sat there like so much fish, dribbling out the door every now and then. It's the way it is and even though Nick is one of my best friends, I don't defend Twilight Time because of that - I defend it because it is putting out wonderful titles that people can then purchase or not. The vitriol shown to this label on other boards (and even here by a couple of regular posters) is unprecedented - I've never really seen anything like it. One site is particularly reprehensible in allowing those kinds of posts while banning and removing posts from people who support the label, and that includes multiple bans for me. Something is wrong somewhere.
Everyone has a choice and the choice is, do I purchase or not? I've seen people write such inane things as, "That's my favorite movie, but damn Twilight Time, I'm not paying thirty bucks for it." This seems to me the height of folly. But it's those same exact people who would also not buy it for twenty bucks or fifteen bucks or ten bucks - MAYBE at five, and that's a firm MAYBE.
I'm one of those who purchase the old "fish" and enable it to dribble out the door, and I will continue to do so. There are several Twilight Times discs, like Bite The Bullet and The Wayward Bus, I'll buy sooner or later. Horror's not my thing so I haven't bought any of the instant sell-outs.
If that's the only way to purchase it, I think many of us would buy our favorite film(s) on BD for $30. I certainly have done so repeatedly. However, I take some exception that those, who complain about the pricing of $30 would not buy the BD if it was priced in the $10-15 range. I understand not appreciating the price point complaints and the sentiment of them becoming tiresome to read, but let's not go overboard with our analysis of certain posters as it somewhat dilutes the validity of the excellent points you did make with your post. As to that other nameless forum, well, we do offer an alternative here in which I think HTF is very fair to all studios and companies releasing video products.
By the way, a great interview with some interesting comments by Nick Redman about the state of marketing video products today.
I wish I was going overboard, but a simple visit to other sites tell a different story, one I've seen hundreds of times and it is the exact story posited above. While that may be a minority it is a very vocal minority and that's what they do - they not only do it, they relish doing it, they shout it as loudly as they can that they do it. I have said repeatedly that here is a different story - the fact is there are really less than a handful of people here who have complained so much that it's gotten a little tiresome. This place is a great respite from the idiocy I see elsewhere, believe me I know and understand that
Call me the "guy who understands and yet doesn't care"...
I don't follow a studio for what they sell. The people who "buy Criterion/Twilight Time because it is a Criterion/Twilight Time" and clean the cobwebs off it are the people killing DVD/BD.
Not the people buying movies for the experience of watching them.
how is someone purchasing product "killing" anything...
Your assertion doesn't make sense to me. The people that buy their video products from Walmart or BB probably clean the cobwebs off some of their titles too so are they killing DVD/BD? Can you further explain your logic?
People that buy "just because" skewer the sales quota. I actually do "get" TT sales model.
I'm waiting for the day(if it arrives soon enough) that BD has MOD. As soon as that happens, TT is a moot point.
Granted that may exacerbate the issue of "wait till I want it"...but it also solves the entire idea of the "$5 bin" at Walmart.(and it solves the entire issue of "having to buy from other markets")
Does MOD ruin sales at B&M, sure. But is B&M even helping itself out? Not near me it isn't.
At my local FYE*, their sales are easily higher than BB, Target and Walmart. Mainly cause they actually care to keep "odd stuff" in stock that B&N, Target, BB, BAM and Walmart care not for.
*If I recall correctly, all FYE are independent. The one in our local mall, the owner is brilliant. He has an entire section of just import. Anything import(DVD/BD/SACD/DVD-A/LD/CD) is either...
1. He bought it to sell it...
2. in a "locked" consignment area.
Your original point still doesn't make any sense to me as the overall sales numbers from Criterion and TT doesn't really affect the overall sales numbers in the video market as a negative because people buy those titles just to buy them.
I don't see the "skewering" you refer to. I don't think any studio cares WHY I buy it, just that I do. And believe me, out of all my dvds and blu rays, I have yet to watch less than 10. No cobwebs here.As far as blu MOD, I hope that day doesn't come too soon. I don't want an old transfer the studio doesn't want to invest anything in slapped on a blu ray and be charged as much for it as TT is charging now for a remastered one. Based on the transfers and cost of the dvd MODs, that's about what we'd get. I'd rather buy from TT and get fewer titles and better quality. I couldn't care less about having a title "on blu" if the quality isn't much above an upscaled dvd.
Now how about this one...
Imagine if Itunes actually figured out a "Red-Book MOD"...
Yeah, MOD "could" cause a race to the bottom in quality. Not that I want to sidetrack a TT thread...but.
Imagine if Amazon and Itunes(and whoever else you could think of...such as a B&M with this) came up with...
MOD BD. If the Itunes version of ST:ID was available on a disc...like the "cloud" version, who wouldn't be happy?
Now imagine if the "German Imax" version was $5 extra...
I started a new thread over that very post...to not derail this one even further...