updated 11:13 am EST, Mon March 4, 2013
Cites high cost of theatrical release, falling DVD sales
An independently-made movie has opted to premiere on the Xbox 360 instead of through a cinema or on DVD. Pulp, a British comedy, will appear on the game console before other media, with the film creator citing the high costs of movie promotion, along with the struggles of selling a DVD through high-street stores.
Adam Hamdy told the BBC that while the top-tier of indie films in the UK were still earning money, "It's the middle tier and the lower tier that's struggling." Hamdy claimed that the combination of piracy and legitimate digital downloads have forced retailers to go out of business, making DVD sales an inefficient way to recoup costs. A theatrical release in the UK, including costs for distribution, marketing, and prints, is believed to be around £2 million ($3 million), according to Hamdy.
The release of Pulp through Microsoft's Video app on the Xbox 360 is an unusual route for a film release, but the move to digital-only exclusivity is not. Amazon Instant Video, Netflix, and others are all working on exclusive content for their own streaming services.