When the trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron came out, there was quite a bit of trouble brewing in the background. But Disney/Marvel played it pretty cool so that initially, no one was the wiser.
When the trailer came out, originally, it was a low res version that was leaked to the public but a few hours later Disney/Marvel released the high res version ahead of schedule, despite announcements that the trailer would air during ABC’s Agents of SHIELD.
Instead, they released a slightly modified version of the trailer during the show that included the much talked about funny scene with Thor’s hammer and the group trying to lift it.
And Disney/Marvel (DisMar) played the leak pretty smooth, saying HYDRA did it. But it was anything but calm and joking in the offices of the studio.
Turns out that there is a digital head hunt for the person responsible for leaking the trailer and I think they are in big trouble. DisMar has gone so far as to have subpoenaed Google for the IP address of the user of the YouTube and Google+ accounts responsible for the trailer leak.
This could be an interesting battle alone, considering how Google takes a stand and holds it’s data close to their chest, no matter who comes knocking.
Regardless of that, DisMar is claiming the early release of the trailer caused financial damages to their business because of the leak, quoting something about lost ratings and ad money because of the leak, since no one had to tune in to SHIELD on ABC to see the trailer.
It’s a viable loss, even if the early released movie trailer broke viewing records online which would indicate that the Avengers sequel will probably be another big hit.-
Now if you have read my content here over the years that I am opposed to movie piracy and call out the lame ass excuses that digital pirates spout about the cost of movies (or TV), or that they are stealing a movie to preview it before (supposedly) going to see the movie, or that they are taking a stand against the system because of the cost and how much the studios make.
Yes, these are a few of the excuses digital thieves spout to make themselves feel better about stealing copyrighted content. I’m guessing they have never heard of supply and demand.
Yet no matter what they say or how they validate their behavior to themselves, they’re all excuses to steal something that should be paid for. (Well, except for that Ferrari I want to “preview” from the lot for a while before I buy it.)
Stealing is stealing. Particularly when it concerns a product that can only be obtained by paying to see or have. To date I have never given it much thought about movie trailers. Trailers are the marketing tools of the studios and their distributors. And they are slathered about the TV airwaves and internet profusely and freely.
Yet the release of movie trailers and stills from movies are part of a marketing plan. A plan that costs the studios big bucks to distribute, and that distribution includes the timing of the release of marketing materials into the “wild.”
Recent history has shown that it can hurt to steal a movie AND make it for use by the world if you distribute it. For example, there’s that fool that was responsible for the leak of the X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie who later found himself sitting in jail for a year for uploading the movie to a file sharing site.
And that’s a good first step for stomping on piracy.
I think that leaking a trailer might not be the same as an entire movie, but what studios pay to market their movies is a huge cost to them and the timing and psychology of the marketing could be perceived as some of the damages a studio could experience. Never mind the “lost TV ratings” and advertiser revenue.
(Did you know advertisers drop $10 billion a TV season just on the basic networks alone?)
Sure, Disney will probably still make a billion off of Avengers Age of Ultron, but they’re making a powerful and swift statement about how they won’t tolerate the mishandling of their owned content. Yes, studios and distributors still own what it is they share freely. And to take on the big mouse and Stan Lee is looking like a stupid move.In the end I will always like the premise of studios pursuing digital pirates.
I will never condone this behavior. This is not a free world and being lazy, cheap, stupid or “idealistic” is no excuse to steal. And it is definitely not something to brag about. But for now, the internet is akin to the wild west. It is relatively new until people like this screw it up for the good people and the process of e-commerce is forced to clamp down on it.
[ From https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGwuoYKhqx8 or This site’s Trailer Post.]
The subject trailer can be found here, Avengers 2 Leaked Trailer.