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More Films Put On iTunes For SAG Voters

Mike Fleming

UPDATE: Paramount press release for The Fighter on iTunes below. Right below is Focus’ release, issued after Deadline broke the story.

EXCLUSIVE: I’m hearing that Focus Features has made a deal with iTunes that will allow SAG members to view its awards season candidate, The Kids Are All Right through a multitude of viewing devices. This follows last week’s announcement by Fox Searchlight of its accommodation with iTunes so that SAG members could watch 127 Hours, Black Swan and Conviction. Other studios are expected to follow suit quickly, because the acting races are so tight this year and because, unlike the AMPAS voting, SAG polls are open for two more weeks. Focus Features is making the service available today because we’re heading into a four-day weekend with MLK Day, and the Golden Globes. The Kids Are All Right is a triple SAG Award nominee, for Ensemble Cast, Annette Bening for Actress, and Mark Ruffalo for Supporting Actor.

Will the move toward iTunes make DVD screeners obsolete? I’m told the jury’s out. The process allows voters to view films on devices, which adds a convenience factor, and there are safeguards. Viewers get 24 hours to finish watching a film before it goes dead. The system could certainly work for AMPAS members, though it might be more of a challenge to get an older membership to embrace it, as well as Writers Guild and Producers Guild membership. The Directors Guild doesn’t is the sole body that still tries to make voting … Read More »

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Fox Puts Searchlight Contenders On iTunes For SAG Voters

LOS ANGELES, CA (January 7, 2011) __ Fox Filmed Entertainment (FFE) and iTunes are offering nearly 100,000 Screen Actors Guild (SAG) members Fox Searchlight Pictures’ 127 HOURS, BLACK SWAN and CONVICTION in HD from iTunes for viewing on their iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, Mac or PC, or with Apple TV on their HD TV. The films will be available to members from January 7-28 during the SAG awards consideration window.

In the past, studios have faced security concerns and prohibitive costs to create and distribute screeners to organizations with large numbers of voters. For the first time ever, FFE’s Fox Searchlight Pictures and iTunes allow the studio to make the screening of films still in theatrical release available to all SAG members who are eligible to vote, in a more secure and cost effective manner. Fox is discussing a similar arrangement in the future with AMPAS, BAFTA and other organizations to implement this new way to present their films for consideration.

“We are thrilled at the nominations these fantastic films have received from this prestigious group, and while we would always prefer voters see films in a theaters, we realize that is not always possible, so we wanted to make sure as many voters as possible have the opportunity to screen them. iTunes enables us to make our films still in theatrical release available to a large number of important voters,” said Jim Gianopulos, Chairman and CEO of Fox Filmed Entertainment.

“We’ve worked with Fox to bring their films to SAG members

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