The site io9 is reporting that Paramount is going to sell the Star Trek into Darkness movie on DVD and Blu-ray, in what I can best describe as, “in pieces.”
What do I mean by pieces?
It seems that all the extras that they’ve put together for home entertainment distribution, will be spread out over different distribution packages in different stores or purchase points.
The Blu-ray will only have seven mini-featurettes, while discs with different commentary tracks will be sold at Target and Best-Buy stores.
So if you buy what io9 calls the normal version, you will be getting less than half the extras that were put together.
And if you’re a true film buff or Star Trek fan and you want all the extras, you will have to buy three different distribution packages for them.
This kind of marketing model screws the movie fan like there’s no tomorrow. Do they sell travel packs of Vaseline with this too?
This reminds me of when I rushed out and bought ANOTHER PARAMOUNT distributed movie, Transformers: Dark of the Moon.
Man was I excited to finally watch this and whatever else was on the Blu-ray disc.
I stuffed it in my BD player and bam, it went straight to movie. Wha? I backed out of the movie and low and behold, the only thing on the disc was just the movie.
It seemed that the extras were shoved over onto the 3D Blu-ray version and what I hurried out to buy was the bare bones version of the movie.
I’m guessing the extras were put on the 3D disc to try and persuade the consumers to jump on that useless 3D marketing band wagon. Face it, if you’re on the bubble about something, but want it, it takes little to persuade you to take the leap. At least for me, that’s how it is.
Where does this trickery leave the consumer?
The consumer, judging by my two data points, is getting screwed by Paramount.
After the Transformers situation, I stopped getting too excited about DVD/BD sales.
It’s getting to be a slippery slope between the home entertainment world and movie consumers.
Distributors are now splitting up TV seasons and selling them in two parts, forcing the consumer to pay twice for what folks used to only pay once for. Which was an entire season in one package.
Then there was how Disney decided to renegotiate their agreements with theaters and threatened to pull Iron Man 3 out of theaters while negotiating for a higher opening weekend percentage from the movie theater chains. Which will translate back to us, the consumer in higher prices.
Now Paramount is distributing special features across different packages for Into Darkness? Really? Or as I looked around, it seems they’ve been distributing movies without special features for quite some time.
I decided to take a peek at some the Blu-ray/DVD combo packs of some recent Paramount distributed movies…
World War Z, (No special features)
Mission Impossible III, (No special features)
Pain & Gain (no mention of special features);
G.I. Joe: Retaliation (You get dog tags, no mention of other features);
Jack Reacher (no mention of other features)
Paranormal Activity 4, (No special features)
Flight, (No special features)
Rise of the Guardians (AH! This one has goodies! They were probably strong-armed by DreamWorks)
Super 8 was loaded with goodies.
Shutter Island, (No special Features)
The first J.J. Abrams Star Trek, (No special Features)
So where am I going with this?
For one, where I was on the bubble about buying Star Trek Into Darkness Blu-ray, I am now fully off the bubble and will be letting folks like you, my friends, know that there will be nothing but the movie on the disc when you buy it.
You’re better off renting it it would seem.
In this day and age, where DVD sales are slowing down, you’d think they’d be putting more features on the product. Instead, they seem to be cutting them out? And yet, the consumer is still paying a premium price for the product.
If anything, you’d think they’d be charging much less to move the light product.
And the big problem is that folks who really want to own the movies that come out light, will buy them, thus supporting this practice.
This doesn’t help. But then, as the world is leaning more towards Blu-ray, 3D, and digital ownership, I can almost see this as a push towards digital, while taking advantage of classic consumers who like having the product in their possession, or don’t have good digital connections.
It seems inevitable.
In the meantime, I’m will be leaning away from supporting the practice of no special features, or as Paramount is trying, spreading different features across different media. (That really bites)
[ io9.com ]