Amazon to produce original movies

20 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Amazon Studios plans to release 12 films a year.

Jill Soloway, creator of Amazon Studios’s hit series “Transparent,” and the series’ star Jeffrey Tambor clutch their Golden Globes after the series won awards for “best comedy series” and “best actor.” NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — After its original series “Transparent” won Golden Globes for “best comedy series” and “lead actor,” the nearly five-year-old Amazon Studios has set its sights on the big screen.SEATTLE (AP) — Amazon Studios is branching out from television series to movies, announcing plans to begin producing and acquiring original movies for theatrical release and, within weeks, video streaming.Amazon Studios currently lists 14 movie projects in development, which the e-commerce has procured through its over-the-transom script-submission process.Amazon.com is joining the fray with a hybrid approach to produce and distribute movies in a way that could challenge the film industry’s long-standing business model.

The studio announced Monday that it will produce and purchase up to 12 original films a year for distribution in movie theaters and through Amazon’s Amazon Prime Instant Video subscription service, according to USA Today. Just five years after its launch, Amazon Studios says it will begin producing motion pictures this year and aims to release a dozen original “prestige movies” annually. Hope co-founded and ran Good Machine, a production company behind some Academy Award-nominated films, including “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” and “Eat Drink Man Woman.” Amazon Original Movies will focus on unique stories, characters and voices from “top and up-and-coming creators,” according to the company. However, two years ago Walt Disney Co. agreed to bypass its longtime premium pay-TV partner, Starz, and release its movies to Netflix beginning in 2016. The e-commerce giant launched Amazon Studios in 2010, touting its approach as “a new way to develop feature films and episodic series” — open to proposals from filmmakers and creators anywhere in the world.

The push from Netflix into the original movie world came after the streaming service found success with its original programming, such as “House of Cards” and “Orange Is the New Black.” Netflix’s method, though, will enlist a simultaneous release in theaters and on its site. Amazon’s “Transparent” won the statue for best original comedy. “Audiences already recognize that Amazon has raised the bar with productions in the episodic realm, tackling bold material in unique ways and collaborating with top talent, both established and emerging,” Hope said in the statement.

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