Hollywood Finds Digitization Isn't So Scary After All

The slow death of the DVD was supposed to spell doom. Instead, it’s created new markets
Photograph by Nancy Stone/Chicago Tribune/MCT/Getty Images

Film premieres get all the attention in Hollywood, but the cash cow for years has been selling those silver DVDs to a home video market far more predictable—and profitable—than the hit-or-miss theatrical release game. That’s why it was widely thought the movie business would take it on the chin as disc ownership gave way to digital distribution of content, just as the music business has been decimated by the shift to MP3s. Yet Hollywood is discovering there’s life after the DVD. With Netflix, Amazon.com, and soon Verizon Communications and Redbox bidding for rights to stream movies on Kindles, iPads, and TVs, the studios are enjoying a boomlet that’s taking the edge off declining disc sales and rentals.

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