You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Target Opens Digital Video Store, Designed to Shield Kids from R-Rated Content

As a late entrant into Internet video distribution, Target is leading with the “family friendly” attributes of its newly launched Target Ticket online storefront — promising to let moms and dads prevent Junior from watching fare with sex, violence or other age-inappropriate themes.

The service, which opened to the public Wednesday, is “ideal for families with children,” according to Target. The company says 43% of Target’s customers have children at home.

Other electronic sell-through services like Apple’s iTunes and Amazon Video offer age-based ratings, of course. But Target Ticket goes a step further, letting parents set up subaccounts for their kids restricted on various criteria. (Netflix also recently introduced a feature that lets subscribers set up multiple profiles.)

Target Tickets includes reviews from Common Sense Media, a not-for-profit org that rates movies and television shows. Users can create up to 20 profiles, with each one filtered according to age appropriateness, level of violence, profanity, MPAA and TV Parental Guidelines.

“It’s really best-in-class parental controls, and it was a big ask from our guests,” said Anne Stanchfield, Target’s divisional merchandise manager of entertainment.

That’s not to say the retailer doesn’t offer a wide selection of movies and shows for adults. The TargetTicket.com homepage currently features “The Hangover Part III,” (available to buy for $14.99 in standard-def and $19.99 in HD) which Common Sense Media recommends for auds 17 and older. The pic “doesn’t skimp at all on the over-the-top, R-rated raunch that defines the franchise,” it said.

SEE ALSO: Why Target’s New Digital Video Service Could Face Complications

All told, Target Ticket is stocked with 30,000 movie and television titles available to buy or rent, download or stream — anywhere, both inside and outside customers’ homes. Current releases offered include “World War Z,” “Iron Man 3,” “Star Trek Into Darkness” and “The Croods.”

Target also is touting more than 50 TV shows, with episodes available the day after air, including “The Walking Dead,” “Big Bang Theory” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.” Other TV titles include HBO’s “Game of Thrones” and “True Blood,” and Showtime’s “Homeland.”

As Target Ticket continues to evolve, the company faces a potential problem: Technology vendor Rovi earlier this month sold the core digital storefront system Target is using to a stealth startup, Reliance Majestic Holdings. The Rovi Entertainment Store business (which also powers Best Buy’s CinemaNow) has lost money for at least the last two years, and it isn’t clear how the new owners plan to turn it around.

Target’s Stanchfield downplayed the risk, saying the company is confident in the strategy and vision of the startup.

The retailer has deals for Target Ticket with studios including Disney, Paramount, Sony Pictures Entertainment, 20th Century Fox, Warner Bros., Universal and Lionsgate. Participating TV networks include ABC, AMC, CBS, CW, Fox, FX, HBO, The WB, Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central, NBC, Showtime, Starz and USA Network. TV content is available for purchase only but may be streamed or downloaded.

In other promotions designed to reel in customers, Target Ticket offers consumers with the retailer’s RedCard credit and debit cards 5% off each purchase and will offer 10 free downloads on select movies for each new user.

Target Ticket is currently available on PCs and Macs, Android and iOS devices, Roku, Microsoft Xbox and Samsung televisions and Blu-Ray players, with additional devices in the queue.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Mark Zuckerberg

    Zuckerberg Defends Facebook's Approach to Free Speech, Says Politicians Will Be Allowed to Lie

    Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg went to Georgetown University Thursday to explain his views on freedom of expression, and how it influenced Facebook’s policies around dealing with controversial subjects, including political ads that include outright lies. “I’ve focused on building services to do two things: give people voice, and bring people together,” Zuckerberg said. In his [...]

  • Kids' Programming Will Be a Battleground

    Why Kids' Programming Will Be a Major Battleground in the Streaming Wars

    When “Moana” left Netflix on Dec. 20, parents of little kids let out a collective wail of despair on Twitter and Facebook parenting groups everywhere. The phrase “ruined Christmas” was pointedly used in the streamer’s direction — sometimes facetiously, sometimes with the reflected ire of a preschooler who had awakened one morning to find her [...]

  • Nvidia Shield leak

    Nvidia Shield 2019 Model Leaks on Amazon

    The latest version of Nvidia’s Android TV streamer has found its way onto Amazon.com ahead of an official announcement. The new device features a more powerful processor as well as a new remote control. Nvidia didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. The latest Nvidia Shield is being powered by a Tegra X1+ processor, [...]

  • Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order

    'Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order': Respawn CEO on Telling the Story Behind 'Becoming a Jedi'

    When it comes to media properties, it doesn’t get much bigger than “Star Wars.” That sentiment certainly isn’t lost on Vince Zampella, CEO of Respawn Entertainment, the studio behind “Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.” The title, which follows Jedi Padawan Cal Kestis (voiced by Cameron Monaghan) after the events of “Episode III — Revenge of [...]

  • Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order

    'Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order': What to Expect From EA and Respawn's Latest

    There’s a lot riding on “Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.” The upcoming title from EA and Respawn is the first major single-player “Star Wars” video game since 2008’s “The Force Unleashed,” and is one of the most anticipated games of 2019. After years of multiplayer adventures, could “Fallen Order” be the title that brings the [...]

  • Katie Couric Olympics

    Katie Couric Plots 'SeeHer Stories' for People Magazine

    Katie Couric’s next assignment: Creating digital videos for People. Couric’s media company, Katie Couric Media is teaming with the Meredith-owned magazine to produce the weekly digital video series “#SeeHer Story,” that will feature short vignettes of female trailblazers and rulebreakers. The series is meant to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which prohibits [...]

  • Wonderscope Willowcrest Manor

    Within Adds 'Willowcrest Manor' Ghost Story to Its Wonderscope AR App (EXCLUSIVE)

    Los Angeles-based immersive media startup Within added another augmented reality (AR) story to its children’s storytelling app Wonderscope Thursday: “Willowcrest Manor” gives kids a chance to become a ghost, haunt a house, and scare intruders away from hidden treasure. Wonderscope, which is available for most recent-generation iPads and iPhones, lets children explore animated stories in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content