“Wal-Mart Stores Inc. disputed a report on Friday saying it was trying to dissuade movie studios from working with other forms of distribution, such as Apple Computer Inc.’s iTunes,” Gina Keating reports for Reuters.
“The New York Post reported that the world’s largest retailer had warned Hollywood it may retaliate against studios for selling movies on iTunes amid concerns that Wal-Mart’s DVD sales will suffer,” Keating reports.
Keating reports, “Wal-Mart disputed the Post report and said it was not pressuring movie studios into shunning online delivery. ‘Customers want to watch movies and they want to be able to make the choice when and how they want to view them,’ a Wal-Mart spokeswoman said. ‘While we recognize there are various current and potential providers of this service, we are not dissuading studios from conducting business with other providers.'”
“Apple and Disney announced plans this month to sell movie downloads on iTunes. Disney Chief Executive Robert Iger said on Tuesday the company sold 125,000 downloads, worth $1 million in revenue, from iTunes in the offering’s first week,” Keating reports.
“A source familiar with the situation said while big retailers like Wal-Mart ‘freaked out’ earlier in the year when Disney and other studios began selling TV shows on iTunes and other Web-based platforms, they showed no particular concern when Disney became the first studio to offer movies on iTunes,” Keating reports. “The source, who declined to be identified, said the discount retailer learned over the intervening months that customers who download — primarily young, single males — are not the same as those customers who buy DVDs.”
Full article here.
If Hollywood has the green light as far as Wal-Mart is concerned, then we hope to see Apple’s announcements of additional iTunes Store feature-length content from non-Disney studios as soon as possible.
Wal-Mart threatens retaliation against Hollywood studios if they sell movies via Apple’s iTunes – September 22, 2006
Wal-Mart not happy with looming threat of Apple iTunes movie downloads – August 31, 2006
Wal-Mart loses ‘philosophical argument’ with Apple CEO Steve Jobs, gains top-selling iPod – November 29, 2005