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Archive for March, 2011

Netflix’s recent decision to begin acquiring original content is beginning to look more and more prescient (or desperate). Hot on the heels of an announcement from Showtime that it will be withholding new episodes from several series, Starz has revealed that it will impose a 90-day delay on Netflix for its original shows, starting with the new drama Camelot.

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Public Media Works (PMW) has been a small-time player in the kiosk movie rental business for some time. The company looks to be stepping up its game with a test launch of new kiosks in Southern California that offers paired Blu-ray rentals for 89 cents per disc.

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Yesterday was a rough day for Netflix on several fronts. The streaming video giant had its website and Watch Instantly service crash for several hours last night, and also got some bad news from content licenser Showtime.

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In a career spanning more than 30 years, billionaire investor Carl Icahn has seen his share of investments go south, but none have stung him harder than his stake in Blockbuster, he says. Icahn discusses the rise of Netflix and Redbox, as well as why Blockbuster was the worst investment of his career, in an article in the AprilĀ Harvard Business Review.

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Redbox parent Coinstar has announced its latest kiosk investment: health screening boxes. Coinstar will be investing an undisclosed sum into SoloHealth, a technology company that has developed an advanced health screening kiosk.

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Having already become the largest video site on the planet, YouTube is now on a trajectory to dramatically increase its revenue, according to one analyst. Mark Mahaney with Citi puts the site on track to earn a cool $1.3 billion this year, up from about $825 million in 2010.

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New ReleasesHere are the latest movies coming to Redbox this week (3/22/11):

Due Date, How Do You Know, All-Star Superman, Black Lightning, Les Miserables: 25th Anniversary, Siren, and The Tourist

Which movies will make your list this week?

All-Star Superman PG
Starring: James Denton,Anthony Lapaglia
Genre: Action,Adventure,Animated
Release Year: 2011
movie details / trailer
Black Lightning NR
Starring: Grigoriy Dobrygin,Ekaterina Vilkova
Genre: Action,Adventure,Sci-Fi
Release Year: 2009
movie details / trailer
Due Date R
Starring: Zach Galifianakis,Robert Downey Jr
Genre: Comedy,Hit Movies
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
How Do You Know PG-13
Starring: Owen Wilson,Paul Rudd,Reese Witherspoon
Genre: Comedy,Drama,Hit Movies,Romantic Comedy
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Les Miserables NR
Starring: Alfie Boe,Nick Jonas
Genre: Drama,Drama,Musical
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
Siren R
Starring: Tereza Srbova,Anna Skellern,Eoin Macken
Genre: Horror,Horror,Thriller
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer
The Tourist PG-13
Starring: Angelina Jolie,Johnny Depp
Genre: Action,Drama,Hit Movies,Adventure,Drama,Thriller
Release Year: 2010
movie details / trailer

The video rental business is a litigious place these days, it seems. Closely following the news that Family Video is facing a class action lawsuit, Netflix has been slapped with one of its own, which alleges that the company is violating customer privacy.

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It turns out the rumors earlier this week were true: Netflix is now in the original content business. The company has confirmed reports that it has acquired the first-run rights to a new political drama series starring Kevin Spacey, which will debut on Netflix late next year.

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These truly are dark days for the traditional video rental store. Family Video, which is the largest remaining privately-held video chain in the nation, has been slapped by a class-action lawsuit alleging that the chain forced thousands of employees to work uncompensated hours.

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