The American Film Institute will begin presenting feature films on its Web site beginning Jan. 22, it was announced Wednesday. The first film to go out on the Internet is Charlie Chaplin’s 1916 classic “The Rink.”
“We consider this a watershed moment in bringing entertainment over the Internet,” said Dan Harries, AFI director of Online Media. “Anyone, anywhere on the World Wide Web will be able to log on and watch a classic Hollywood movie in its entirety, on demand and complete with sound.”
The films will be available on the new AFI OnLine Cinema at the institute’s Web site. Utilizing new technology developed by VDOnet will enable viewers to see the film in real time and without time-consuming downloading that has characterized earlier screening experiments. Simply put, new research allows for automatic adjustment to the available bandwidth while protecting the integrity of the video.
In February, AFI OnLine Cinema will present Buster Keaton’s 1921 “The Boat.” The films are located at http://www.afionline.org/cinema.