×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Sony chief opens window chat at ShoWest

Lynton talks theatrical windows, digital conversion

Sony Pictures chairman and CEO Michael Lynton kicked off ShoWest on Monday with a call to arms for healthier snacks.

Lynton addressed the crowd at the Paris Ballroom in Las Vegas, saying, “Healthier options to your existing menu (in theaters) is the right thing to do for our industry, for audiences and for our country.”

Citing a recent poll of moviegoers, Lynton said a majority of parents would buy healthy snacks if they were offered, with 42% of those polled saying they would visit theater concessions more often.

Lynton added clout to his plea, announcing support from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation lead by co-heads President Bill Clinton, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and American Heart Assn. prexy Clyde Yancy.

TV personality Dr. Mehmet Oz also put in a word for the cause via a pre-recorded message.

“Everyone enjoys popcorn and a soda at the movies,” Mehmet said. “But there are healthier alternatives.”

Lynton also commented on the growing debate over shortened theatrical windows and the need for digital conversions of theaters.

Lynton called for a “candid and cooperative” relationship with exhibs, most of whom were in the room.

“We don’t want to open windows in a way that closes yours,” Lynton said to the audience. “We’ve all got to be open to experimenting with new and different windows, taking advantage of new and different technologies.”

Shortened theatrical-to-DVD windows have become a hot button issue since Disney announced it would tighten windows on two tentpoles a year, starting with “Alice in Wonderland.”

In the wake of threatened boycotts of “Alice,” studios began negotiating with exhibs to find a mutually-agreed on time period. Lynton acknowledged, though, that further experimenting with windows will be inevitable given the downturn in the DVD business and the need to fight piracy.

Still, Lynton stressed the importance of theatrical releases, saying, “We don’t make movies for televisions, for iPods, for cell phones or computers.”

With box office revenues up and 3D adding to exhibitors’ coffers, he made a case for theatrical runs.

“The most important window … is the theatrical window,” he added with applause from the crowd. “People want to see movies in theaters… Simply put, going out to the movies is more fun than ever.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Swedes Call for Incentives to Keep

    Swedes Call for Incentives to Keep Potential Runaways at Home

    Horror film “Midsommar” did it last year. A new adaptation of the Swedish classic “The Emigrants” will do it next year. Prestigious productions that could have taken advantage of beautiful Swedish locations and craft expertise continue to run away to foreign locations for lower costs and tax incentives. Despite having a strong film industry creatively [...]

  • Ted FarnsworthDeadline's Cocktails on the Croisette,

    Former MoviePass Chairman Ted Farnsworth Trying to Buy Failing Subscription Company

    Ted Farnsworth, the financier who helped set in motion MoviePass’s meteoric rise and precipitous fall, has submitted an offer to purchase the beleaguered subscription service and its parent company, Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc. Financial terms of the offer were not disclosed, but Farnsworth, who served as Helios’ chairman and chief executive officer is also [...]

  • Billy Crystal Comedy 'Standing Up, Falling

    Billy Crystal and Ben Schwartz Comedy 'Standing Up, Falling Down' Picked Up By Shout! Studios (EXCLUSIVE)

    Shout! Studios has acquired all North American rights to comedy feature “Standing Up, Falling Down,” starring Billy Crystal, Ben Schwartz and Eloise Mumford. The theatrical release for the film, which debuted at Tribeca Film Festival, is slated for early next year. Schwartz, whose credits include “Parks & Recreation” and “Blue Iguana,” voices the title character [...]

  • Cocina Belleza

    San Sebastian: ‘Cocinar Belleza’s’ Sergio Piera, Toni Segarra Talk Culinary Art

    Cognoscenti of culinary documentaries relish how open the genre is, driving deep into technique, amazing spectators by revealing the profession’s depths. Rarely, however, does a documentary decide to sidestep the well-known beats of the genre, step back and capture a bigger picture that asks about the nature of beauty and art rather than culinary craftsmanship [...]

  • Constance Wu and Jennifer Lopez star

    ‘Hustlers’ Acquired for Germany by Fred Kogel’s New KKR-Backed Company

    Fred Kogel’s budding media powerhouse, backed by KKR but still without a name, has acquired “Hustlers” for Germany and Austria in an all-rights deal with STXfilms. The movie, starring Jennifer Lopez and Constance Wu, will be released in Germany via Universum Film on Dec. 5. The pic, about a group of enterprising strippers, premiered to [...]

  • Nina Wu Midi Z Un Certain

    Chinese Indie Films, Indian Fare Dominate Pingyao Festival Lineup

    Chinese indie films and Indian fare dominate the lineup of the Pingyao International Film Festival. The main selection for the festival’s third edition will include 28 world premieres, organizers revealed on Monday. The event will screen 52 films from 26 countries and territories, with all of them having their China debut. The opening film is [...]

  • 'Sound of Metal' Review: Riz Ahmed

    Toronto Film Review: 'Sound of Metal'

    “Sound of Metal” is a film with a potent, searing hook. It stars Riz Ahmed, who is such a sensational actor (just watch him in “Jason Bourne” or “Nightcrawler” or “The Sisters Brothers”), as Ruben, a punk-metal drummer, heavy on the tattoos and peroxide, who has been thrashing away as part of a caterwauling noise [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content