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Amazon to Start Making Movies in 2015

"Encouraged by major wins in the streaming television department, Amazon will start producing movies for theatrical/digital release in 2015"

After walking away from the Golden Globes with a pair of statues for Best Comedy/Musical (Transparent) and Best Actor in a Comedy (Jeffrey Tambor in Transparent), Amazon seems to have gotten a boost in confidence. Earlier this morning, Amazon Studios’ Roy Price tweeted a welcome to producer Ted Hope, who will be heading the new movies branch of the technology conglomerate. Having recently departed from streaming media company, Fandor, Hope has experience marketing and distributing independent/foreign titles. According to Variety, Amazon hopes to make about 12 films per year, for theatrical release, and send them to their Prime service a mere four to eight weeks later.

Amazon to Start Making Movies

Amazon is nipping at the heels of their biggest rival, Netflix, who, in 2014 announced their production of the follow-up to Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon. Along with a four-picture deal with Adam Sandler, Netflix’s foray into the theatrical market seems sure-footed. No slouch, Amazon Entertainment has secured the likes of Woody Allen, David Gordon Green, Steven Soderbergh, Mark Forster and Whit Stillman to shift to the more artist-friendly television side of the business, and deliver brand-new series for Amazon Prime. Overcoming the hurdles of actually getting large theater chains to agree to a VOD release within 90 days of a film’s theatrical bow could usher in a new era for distribution. Already having denied Netflix a theatrical release for Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon 2, the National Association of Theatre Owners could be slowly forced to change outdated policies regarding VOD releasing, and start to change their business model completely. Certainly willing to push the boundaries of “average” television, Amazon’s venture into film is a welcome transition, and one that could reshape the modern movie landscape.

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