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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Digital Cinema Forum   » Disney apparently being sensible with Star Wars:TFA keys (Page 1)

 
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Author Topic: Disney apparently being sensible with Star Wars:TFA keys
Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12272
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 12-10-2015 12:29 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
We received this forwarded email today from our booker. It's basically a reminder not to allow "a lot" of people (staff, friends) to see your "technical check" screening of the new Star Wars. It doesn't say when the keys will open but it DOES indicate that they will open in time to do a full advance screening, as opposed to some of the last-minute nonsense other studios have employed. Usually for 3-D Disney movies the keys have opened on Tuesday or Wednesday -- hopefully that will be the case this time too.

quote:
> Dear Exhibitor,
>
> Regarding engagements of STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS, please be advised that keys
will be active and content can be ingested in advance of the 7PM Thursday 12/17
"preview" showings. We encourage you to schedule technical checks in advance of
these shows at all playdate theatres to assure a flawless presentation to the
public.
>
> However -- in light of the special nature of this film and concerns about early
leaks regarding its content -- we ask that only one or two people (one
projectionist and/or one manager) be permitted to view and supervise the technical
checks
. Wider attendance at technical checks (including theatre staff and others)
is strictly forbidden and will be considered a breach of the terms listed on the
rider to our license agreement for this film, which states "Absolutely no
exhibition of this title (public or private) may happen prior to 7PM on December
17, 2015." We don't want the storyline or surprises in the film to leak. We
really want fans to be able to discover the film on their own terms as this is
critical for the film's overall success.
>
> Thanks for your understanding and cooperation.
>
> Best regards,
>
>
>
> Ken Caldwell
> Senior Vice President/General Sales Manager
> Theatrical Sales and Distribution, North America
> Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures


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Dennis Benjamin
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1402
From: Denton, MD
Registered: Feb 2002


 - posted 12-10-2015 03:06 PM      Profile for Dennis Benjamin   Author's Homepage   Email Dennis Benjamin   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I received this letter today.

I fear this may be a sign that the movie isn't that good.

The last time I received a similar letter like this was for "Jurassic Park: The Lost World".

We know how that went.

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12272
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 12-10-2015 03:34 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I thought of that too -- if the movie has "I am your father"-type surprises, it's going to be all over the internet by midnight on the 17th. One has to hope that the movie is also such a fun watch that it'll sustain some legs. (I hope so, because we had to book it for four #$%&ing weeks. First time ever.

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Matt Russell
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 142
From: Aurora, USA
Registered: Aug 2015


 - posted 12-10-2015 07:08 PM      Profile for Matt Russell     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Just got this email as well, we're hoping to do a quality overview (on the screen and sound system), which we haven't done since Tomorrowland, so the sooner the better. My manager also told us that the auditorium will be closed from the outside while whoever is inspecting the film (we don't know who yet) is viewing it. Also went as far as no devices with a camera allowed in the auditorium during the screening. Avengers 2 was no where near this complex. [Roll Eyes]

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

Posts: 2065
From: Lakeport, CA USA
Registered: Jan 2004


 - posted 12-10-2015 07:39 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Here's George Lucas's quote about Episode VII.

quote:
“I think the fans are going to love it. It’s very much the kind of movie they’ve been looking for.”
Hard to know what to make of that since Lucas seemed to constantly be out of touch with what fans actually wanted from Star Wars.

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Aaron Garman
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1458
From: Notre Dame du Lac, Indiana USA
Registered: Mar 2003


 - posted 12-10-2015 08:24 PM      Profile for Aaron Garman   Email Aaron Garman   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'd like to see how they police QC screenings on several thousand screens. I understand the concern, but if I were a theater manager, I'd honestly want my staff to see the film early for a couple reasons. Mostly, you reward them with that and they'll all be more willing to work and work harder over the crazy opening weekend. And secondly, it'd be nice for them to be able to know the content of the film so they can be knowledgeable for customers coming in opening weekend. This gives them the ability to answer questions about appropriateness. It allows ushers to know how far into the film it is. Naturally, management should take proper precautions to ensure the screening isn't pirated. Shoot, I'd even be willing to present an NDA to staff wanting to partake in such a screening, not allowing them to talk about the film until the night of the show.

The more your staff knows about what's playing in your auditoriums, the better your place is going to run.

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

Posts: 2065
From: Lakeport, CA USA
Registered: Jan 2004


 - posted 12-10-2015 09:29 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Aaron, I completely agree with everything you're saying. However, they are threatening to penalize non-compliant theatres with extra percentage points on film rental. Although the risk of getting caught is probably small, it's just not worth if for the sake of letting a few employees see it early. Especially since you never know when an employee has a relative who works for the studio that might tattle if they find out a theatre did something against the rules.

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Dennis Benjamin
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1402
From: Denton, MD
Registered: Feb 2002


 - posted 12-10-2015 10:16 PM      Profile for Dennis Benjamin   Author's Homepage   Email Dennis Benjamin   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Maybe they'll be pulling logs on V.P.F. Sites....

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Andrew Thomas
Master Film Handler

Posts: 268
From: Pearland, TX, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted 12-10-2015 10:59 PM      Profile for Andrew Thomas   Email Andrew Thomas   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
My Disney keys always unlock at 12:01am on Wednesday (so late Tuesday/early Wednesday) giving plenty of time to run a tech check.

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Matt Russell
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 142
From: Aurora, USA
Registered: Aug 2015


 - posted 12-10-2015 11:06 PM      Profile for Matt Russell     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Andrew Thomas
My Disney keys always unlock at 12:01am on Wednesday (so late Tuesday/early Wednesday) giving plenty of time to run a tech check.
Usually true, but my keys for The Good Dinosaur didn't unlock until sometime around 12:00 PM on the day before it came out. I'm hoping that Star Wars doesn't have the same issue and that was just a one time problem.

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Andrew Thomas
Master Film Handler

Posts: 268
From: Pearland, TX, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted 12-10-2015 11:59 PM      Profile for Andrew Thomas   Email Andrew Thomas   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Hmmm, this was what I had.

--- GOODDINOSAUR_FTR-1-2D_S_EN-EN-CCAP_US_51-HI-VI_2K_DI_20151110_DTB_IOP_OV ---
--- Valid from 2015-11-23T00:01:00 to 2015-12-11T03:58:00 ---

Wonder why yours was different...

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Matt Russell
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 142
From: Aurora, USA
Registered: Aug 2015


 - posted 12-11-2015 12:31 AM      Profile for Matt Russell     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
We were having server issues earlier on that week, but I don't think that's what caused it to come a day late. Could of just been a problem when Disney was sending out the codes so some theaters (like mine) received it later than others. But we got it just in time so that's what matters I guess. [Razz]

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Rick Cohen
Film Handler

Posts: 67
From: Amherst, New York
Registered: Feb 2011


 - posted 12-11-2015 03:24 AM      Profile for Rick Cohen   Author's Homepage   Email Rick Cohen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Disney is just trying to protect their movie from spoilers before the premiere on Thursday. No more, no less.

Their rules on the exhibitor screenings were just as strict. They have kept a very tight lid on plot and character details up until now, they simply do not want to ruin the experience for the paying audience.

One reason I personally want to watch it before the Thursday 7PM premiere, is that I want to enjoy the movie free of spoilers. That is virtually impossible in this day and age, unless you live in a social media vacuum.

Personally, I have never, not even once, experienced a faulty DCP once it has been ingested on the server. So the argument some people make about desperately needing to QC every DCP 48 hours in advance of an opening is flimsy at best. All you really need is a framing chart and the aspect ratio, and neither of those require a KDM.

When I screen a movie early, I do it solely for the special thrill of seeing a new movie before the general public does, and to give my staff members a small fringe benefit for working in a movie theatre. It's not like they get health care benefits or paid vacation time, so that's the least I can do when a prestige movie is opening.

Under the circumstances, Disney's request is supremely reasonable. It's not as if people aren't already camping out in lines ten days in advance in anticipation of the movie, or were using drones to invade the air space of production sets and gathering espionage on character and plot details.

No matter what, there are going to be spoilers all over the internet and social media probably during the middle of the 7pm screenings. Sad, but true. All Disney is attempting to accomplish is to help people going into the 12/17 7PM screenings, which will be a vast majority of the core fan base, to have a spoiler-free experience, as it should be.

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Monte L Fullmer
Film God

Posts: 8233
From: Nampa, Idaho, USA
Registered: Nov 2004


 - posted 12-11-2015 03:35 AM      Profile for Monte L Fullmer   Email Monte L Fullmer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
My premiere showings are at 7pm, so that cancels this note all out.

Oh, to share a tidbit with all:

When, I start the 7pm showing this coming Thursday night, I have started ALL seven episodes of Star Wars ... beginning with the original 1977 release, then the 1980, 1983, 1999, 2002, and the last one in 2005.

Going from carbon arc, changeover days, to platter and xenon,
then to digital.

thx -Monte

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Anders Nordentoft-Madsen
Film Handler

Posts: 54
From: Valby, Denmark
Registered: Aug 2005


 - posted 12-11-2015 04:36 AM      Profile for Anders Nordentoft-Madsen   Author's Homepage   Email Anders Nordentoft-Madsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well, the movie opens on december 16. here in denmark, so so much for not wanting to spoil it before the 17th......

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