CATEGORIES Deals, Paramount, Universal, Warner Brothers, RumorMonger, Distribution, Newsstand, Home Entertainment, Movie Marketing, Features, Movie News, CinematicalThough Amazon reps are still refusing to comment, the unending rumors about their involvement in a possible rival to iTunes turned into news yesterday, when Reuters reported that the company is "in advanced talks with several major Hollywood studios about creating a service that allows consumers to download and copy movies and television programs." The understanding is that the studios involved are Universal, Paramount, and Warner Brothers, and that all three are "enthusiastic" about an agreement, which could come soon. That said, however, it's by no means a done deal.
While the news of a major tech company jumping (maybe) into the movie downloading business would be noteworthy on its own, the fact that the company is Amazon - a retailer of frightening ubiquity - gives the report a completely different scope. Instead of just tech savvy kids doing the downloading (like they do now), Amazon offering the service creates the possibility of middle-American grandparents one-clicking their ways to laptops full of movies. While I'm not sure if this is cool or depressing, it's an image of undeniable power, and yet another sign of how much tech has changed the film industry over the past 10-15 years.