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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Ground Level   » Playdates on keys way off booking dates. Just me?

   
Author Topic: Playdates on keys way off booking dates. Just me?
Andrew Thomas
Master Film Handler

Posts: 273
From: Pearland, TX, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted 02-04-2014 05:49 PM      Profile for Andrew Thomas   Email Andrew Thomas   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I've noticed quite a few of our keys have ranges on the playdate that is way off from how long we have a movie booked.

Decided to do some "Oscar Contender" pickups throughout February since the schedule is pretty lame. Booked American Hustle for 1 week and the keys just got e-mailed to me.

"Dear Theatre Operator,

Attached are engagement keys for **** AMER_HUSTLE_FTR2_CCAP_51_HI_VI **** for all of the servers at your facility

*** KEY START/STOP LOCAL DATE AND TIME ***

--- Key Start: 2014-02-06T00:01:00 ---
--- Key Stop: 2014-05-30T08:00:00 ---"

16 weeks! A new record [Razz]

At least so far we haven't had the range NOT include the correct playdates.

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Frank Cox
Film God

Posts: 2234
From: Melville Saskatchewan Canada
Registered: Apr 2011


 - posted 02-04-2014 06:10 PM      Profile for Frank Cox   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Cox   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
That's nothing new here. Some keys last for just the week I'm playing a movie, some last six months past that. It doesn't bother me, though; as long as the key is valid when I need it, who cares?

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12767
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 02-04-2014 06:23 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
It seems to be a Deluxe phenomenon mostly. Usually the longest keys come with the crappiest movies.

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Edward Havens
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 614
From: Los Angeles, CA
Registered: Mar 2008


 - posted 02-04-2014 06:43 PM      Profile for Edward Havens   Email Edward Havens   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Sony has been issuing 16wk KDMs since at least 2010.

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Andrew Thomas
Master Film Handler

Posts: 273
From: Pearland, TX, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted 02-04-2014 07:09 PM      Profile for Andrew Thomas   Email Andrew Thomas   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
It just seems weird to me given how worried the Studios seem to be about unauthorized shows...and then they have these wacky 16 week keys.

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Brad Miller
Administrator

Posts: 17775
From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
Registered: May 99


 - posted 02-04-2014 07:17 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
The 16 week keys actually make the most sense. Unless you have a Titanic on your hands, 16 weeks will cover any length engagement these days. This way the theater checks the key once, the studio doesn't have to pay to keep re-keying the movie, and once the first keys unlock technically THAT's the "game over" point of anti-piracy anyway. From there it's up to the watermarking to catch evildoers.

What's absolutely ridiculous are these keys that expire on Wednesdays...just because they happened to start on a Wednesday or they think that a new Wednesday opening will kick them off of the schedule. This industry is all about Friday to Thursday. There is no damn good reason to ever have a normal engagement key NOT end on a Friday. They are just asking for problems.

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Andrew Thomas
Master Film Handler

Posts: 273
From: Pearland, TX, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted 02-04-2014 07:20 PM      Profile for Andrew Thomas   Email Andrew Thomas   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Brad, but that is the key...it actually makes a lot of sense so a bit surprising that they do it [Wink]

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Michael Putlack
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 187
From: Fort Collins, Colorado
Registered: Sep 2011


 - posted 02-04-2014 08:02 PM      Profile for Michael Putlack   Author's Homepage   Email Michael Putlack   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
What doesn't make a lot of sense is how they'll last 16 weeks but won't open more than a day or so early, even if you're not opening the film opening day. I'd love to get the QCs done as soon as I can!

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Brad Miller
Administrator

Posts: 17775
From: Plano, TX (36.2 miles NW of Rockwall)
Registered: May 99


 - posted 02-04-2014 08:04 PM      Profile for Brad Miller   Author's Homepage   Email Brad Miller       Edit/Delete Post 
Its all about piracy. Once the key becomes valid, the threat is significantly diminished.

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Andrew Thomas
Master Film Handler

Posts: 273
From: Pearland, TX, USA
Registered: Jun 2012


 - posted 02-04-2014 08:19 PM      Profile for Andrew Thomas   Email Andrew Thomas   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I think we've been about 50/50 on keys unlocking Wednesday vs. Thursday prior to the Friday start date. Frozen unlocked on the Tuesday. Disney actually seems to care somewhat as their letters said a complete QC screening was a requirement.

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

Posts: 2253
From: Lakeport, CA USA
Registered: Jan 2004


 - posted 02-04-2014 11:11 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
As Ed mentioned, Sony has been providing 16 week keys for quite a while. However, Sony also has the tightest window for when keys are active prior to opening. Up until just recently, Sony keys usually were not active prior to 6:00pm the evening prior to opening (Thursday evening in most cases). recently I have seen Sony issue keys that were good as early as 6:00am the day before release.

For most studios, the standard policy is to have keys active at midnight the day before release (effectively providing a 24 hour QC window). Only Disney has made a practice of routinely issuing keys valid much earlier. Disney keys are often valid at midnight Monday morning (Sunday night) for a Friday release.

For most movies opening on the break, the keys are good for 2 weeks. I'm guessing this is because most movies are not guaranteed a screen for more than 2 weeks until after the second weekend gross hits the theatre's holdover number.

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