'Lantern,' 'Bosses' among first for studio's 'digital locker'

Months before UltraViolet’s upcoming launch this fall, Warner Bros. revealed that “Green Lantern” and “Horrible Bosses” will be among the first films the studio will offer to consumers through the cloud-based “digital locker” service backed by the majors.

Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes mentioned the titles while discussing the conglom’s second quarter earnings Wednesday morning, adding that the majority of future home entertainment releases will include UltraViolet functionality.

UltraViolet will enable consumers to store digital versions of movies and TV shows they purchase as a Blu-ray or electronically, for example, and access them at any time using any UV-supported hardware with an Internet connection.

Bewkes’ specificity regarding UltraViolet plans surprised execs at other studios. The Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem, a consortium of 75 companies backing the launch of the digital locker, is still guarding most of the details on the service and only started offering licenses to content owners and retailers, among others, last month (Daily Variety, July 13).

The other majors, including Sony, whose chief technology officer, Mitch Singer, serves as DECE prexy, have opted not to disclose which films they will offer up until a later date.

All six of the majors support UltraViolet, including Disney, even though the Mouse has yet to formally join the DECE coalition.

While partners never agreed upon a single date to reveal which titles will be available through UltraViolet, DECE general manager-exec director Mark Teitell expected some studios to discuss titles before launch.

Warner Bros., in particular, has been bullish on digital distribution, with Bewkes saying UV should “significantly boost digital ownership” as the digital transition of homevideo is “accelerating to make digital ownership of movies more compelling.”

“We believe this could fundamentally change how people manage and watch their movie collection,” he added.

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