I don't know about you, but unless it's a film I love and must add to my library, I like to rent first. And I rent a lot of sci fi. As a Netflix member, this is going to be problematic when it comes to Warner Brothers films.
On Wednesday Warner Bros. and Netflix announced a deal that will delay rental releases on Netflix while increasing the number of Warners' catalog titles the mail-rental company can offer, and at a lower price (at least to Netflix, I doubt they're passing the savings on to members). In return for more films and a higher return on investment, Netflix rentals for Warner Bros. films will be delayed for 28 days.
The implications are mind boggling, although understandable. Warner will benefit by having 28 days of sales before the films are available on Netflix. Netflix and Warner Brothers' previous agreement ended more than a year ago. According to other reports from mid 2009, a similar window applies to Red Box and other DVD rental outlets as well.
This means if you want to wait to see The Book of Eli or the next Harry Potter on DVD, you'll have to shell out full price for it, or sit on your thumbs for four weeks before you can see it as a rental.
The reports state that it's a revenue neutral deal for Warner Brothers, but it seems like a lot of effort for no financial gain.