[March 12, 2007]

Some DVD premieres get more from Sony

(Video Business Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Sony Pictures in January moved its Worldwide Acquisitions Group out from under Sony Pictures Home Entertainment to give it a broader role at the studio, and already the group is finding new outlets for projects that were to be DVD premieres.


"We feel we are very well integrated into all distribution divisions of the company," said Adrian Alperovich, who leads the group as executive VP and general manager. "Being outside the [DVD] division helps us be more of an equal partner to all the divisions."

For instance, Daddy Day Camp
, sequel to the 2003 Eddie Murphy theatrical Daddy Day Care
, was originally slated to premiere on DVD. Starring Cuba Gooding Jr. and directed by Fred Savage from TV's The Wonder Years

, Camp
is now targeted for a big screen bow later in the year.

"It was made for DVD, but it turned out so well, it's again under evaluation," explained Alperovich. "Test screenings went extremely well."

Similarly, the studio is debating whether in-house production Starship Troopers 3
will bow in spring 2008 as a theatrical or straight-to-DVD release.

Additional energy can be poured into the group's efforts, execs say, because of the new infrastructure.

"The intention is to increase our number of acquisitions and productions," said Lara Thompson, senior VP.

For the U.S. market through 2007, at least 60 acquired projects will be released on DVD and 12 to 18 in-house made-for DVD productions.

On the acquisitions front, the group picked up worldwide distribution rights outside of Japan for anime titles Paprika

and Tekkon Kinkreet
. Paprika
will bow theatrically in May, and distribution hasn't yet been determined for Tekkon Kinkreet
.

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information. All Rights Reserved.

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