It's been awhile since we've seen the debate over release-windows. Maybe now that the Box Office Slump of '05 has long since past, and the issue with day-and-date releases has made the debate almost obsolete, theaters just aren't complaining as much. At least in America, anyway. Last week, distributors and exhibitors throughout Italy were furious about Universal's plan to release Miami Vice on DVD exactly two months after its release in cinemas there. The movie, based on the '80s TV-show, opened in the country on October 6 via United International Pictures and it was planned to be out on video December 6. The head of the Italian exhibitors' association ANEC threatened legislative intervention and Warner Village Cinemas actually stopped playing the pic.

All the protesting and boycotting helped. On Friday it was announced that Universal would change the DVD date to January, which would lengthen the window to the usually honored three months. Unfortunately, the win by distributors and exhibitors probably won't change the success of the movie at the box office. In its first four weeks, Miami Vice made only a little more than $4 million. Comparatively, in the same amount of time Woody Allen's Scoop made almost $5 million, World Trade Center has made $6.5 million and The Devil Wears Prada has made close to $15 million. And obviously, Miami Vice didn't even figure into the top 20 this past weekend thanks to it being pulled from so many screens. So, maybe, just maybe, Italians aren't that into the movie, and it wouldn't really matter if the DVD came out next week. Or, it could be the matter of it opening so late, since in countries like the UK and France, where it opened closer to its release in the U.S., grosses were pretty decent.

[via In Focus Magazine Newswire; box office numbers courtesy of Box Office Mojo]