Barry Willis

Barry Willis  |  Jul 18, 1998  |  0 comments

The chicken-or-egg issue that plagued the early ramp-up of DVD may now be history. Sales of both DVD hardware and software are increasing rapidly, attendees learned at last week's <A HREF="http://www.vsda.org/">Video Software Dealers Association</A> convention in Las Vegas.

Barry Willis  |  Jul 12, 1998  |  0 comments

Thursday, July 9, was "an important day for artists," according to Robert Chapman, attorney for film director, producer, and writer Francis Ford Coppola. On that day, a Los Angeles Superior Court jury imposed $60 million in punitive damages on <A HREF="http://www.wb.com">Warner Brothers,</A> the defendant in a lawsuit brought by Coppola.

Barry Willis  |  Jul 12, 1998  |  0 comments

Your local mom-and-pop video store might be on its way to extinction because of pricing benefits offered to large chains, complained the Independent Video Retailers Group last week at the <A HREF="http://www.vsda.org/">Video Software Dealers Association</A> trade show and conference in Las Vegas. According to the independents, mass-market outlets like <A HREF="http://www.blockbuster.com">Blockbuster</A> are given an unfair advantage by movie studios eager to increase rentals by putting more copies of hit movies in stores.

Barry Willis  |  Jul 12, 1998  |  2 comments

Yesterday, Japan; today, America; tomorrow, the world: <A HREF="http://www.disney.com">Disney's Buena Vista Home Entertainment</A> and <A HREF="http://www.wb.com">Warner Home Video</A> have signed a pact to distribute DVDs in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and the former Soviet Union. Distribution of more than 100 titles to more than 30 regional territories will begin this fall. Studios to be represented include Warner, Disney, <A HREF="http://beta.choicemall.com/hollywoodpictures/">Hollywood Pictures</A>, and <A HREF="http://beta.choicemall.com/touchstone/">Touchstone Pictures</A>. Some independent films have also been picked up for distribution.

Barry Willis  |  Jul 05, 1998  |  0 comments

July 1, 1998---"These presentations always attract more Hollywood lawyers than engineers." That's how Dick Davies of the <A HREF="http://www.1394ta.com">1394 Trade Association</A> summed up Brendan Trawl's update on DVD Copy Protection issues at the second annual FireWire Developers' Conference last week in San Jose, CA.

Barry Willis  |  Jun 28, 1998  |  0 comments

Move over, fiber optics; good-bye, T1 lines. The unexploited potential of ordinary copper telephone wires will soon be mined by a consortium of computer and communications companies. Known as the Home Phoneline Networking Alliance (or HomePNA), the recently formed group intends to deliver affordable, high-speed networking over existing phone lines.

Barry Willis  |  Jun 21, 1998  |  0 comments

In a move that reportedly caught <A HREF="http://www.circuitcity.com">Circuit City</A> CEO Richard Sharp by surprise, retail chain Sears, Roebuck & Co. has decided not to carry <A HREF="http://www.divx.com">Divx</A>. Apparently, the format's overwhelmingly negative pre-release publicity was taken seriously by the retailer.

Barry Willis  |  Jun 21, 1998  |  0 comments

With enthusiastic backing from the movie industry, DVD-Video is beginning a strong climb to widespread popularity. More than 3000 titles could be available by the end of 1998, which is four times the number available in 1997, the format's first year.

Barry Willis  |  Jun 06, 1998  |  0 comments

Video is hot and getting hotter. With HDTV looming on the horizon, no-compromise video demonstrations will be among the biggest attractions at <A HREF="http://www.hifishow.com">HI-FI '98</A>, beginning Tuesday at the Westin Los Angeles Airport Hotel.

Barry Willis  |  Jun 06, 1998  |  0 comments

In its continuing crusade to standardize soundtrack-playback levels, <A HREF="http://www.dolby.com">Dolby Laboratories</A> has introduced a new soundtrack-loudness meter, the Model 737. The device was unveiled two weeks ago at <A HREF="http://www.variety.com"><I>Variety</I></A>'s Dolby Tech Symposium at the Cannes Film Festival. According to a May 20 Dolby press release, the 737 "enables sound mixers to easily monitor the subjective loudness of trailers and other soundtracks as they are being prepared."

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