Christopher Nolan opposes Sean Parker's Screening Room

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 17 March 2016
Christopher Nolan

Christopher Nolan

'Inception' director Christopher Nolan is opposed to Sean Parker's Screening Room platform, which aims to make movies available to viewers at home at the same time they are released in cinemas

Christopher Nolan has criticised a proposal to release movies in the home on the same day they premiere in cinemas.

The 'Inception' director is opposed to Screening Room, a start-up company backed by Internet entrepreneur Sean Parker, which proposes to implement an in-home movie service, and his comments come a day after James Cameron said it would have a "disastrous" effect on the income and future of movie theatres if their exclusivity to screen films first was taken away.

Nolan backed the 'Avatar' filmmaker, saying in a statement: "It would be hard to express the great importance of exclusive theatrical presentation to our industry more compellingly than Jon Landau and James Cameron did."

Art House Convergence, a group of roughly 600 speciality theatres, has opposed the proposal too, however, a number of directors have publicly backed Parker's idea.

'Lord of the Rings' filmmaker Peter Jackson believes Screening Room will "expand the audience for a movie - not shift it from cinema to living room".

In a statement to Variety, Jackson said: "Screening Room is very carefully designed to capture an audience that does not currently go to the cinema.

"It does not play off studio against theatre owner. Instead it respects both, and is structured to support the long-term health of both exhibitors and distributors - resulting in greater sustainability for the wider film industry itself."

While 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' director J.J. Abrams thinks Screening Room will create another revenue stream for the movie industry that would ultimately improve the experience for audiences in the future.

Abrams said: "It actually is beneficial to the exhibitors ... they're targeting groups that actually don't go to the movies at all. If they could harness even a fraction of the number that don't, the amount of money that would go to the cinemas is significant and actually is amazingly helpful to the cinematic experience."

Screening Room has proposed to implement a charge of $150 for access to a box that transmits the films and will give customers 48 hours to watch the movies.

The hope is to capture middle-aged audiences whose family responsibilities prevent them from routinely going to the cinema.

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