The MPAA entered the service business this morning with the launch of an ad-free website –WhereToWatch.com – that guides visitors to legitimate online platforms for particular movies and TV shows. The destination, supported by the trade group’s six member studios, aims to become a one-stop shop to help people buy, rent, or stream what they want and, when they enter a zip code, find showtimes at local theaters. It also offers trailers and alerts, powered by GoWatchIt, that will notify users when content they seek becomes available.
WhereToWatch “gives you the high quality, easy viewing experience you deserve while supporting the hard work and creativity that go into making films and shows,” MPAA chief Chris Dodd says.
Sony Pictures TV president Steve Mosko says that the industry “is delivering more content via more platforms today than anyone could have even imagined just a few years ago” and that the site will facilitate “a terrific viewing experience for everyone who loves TV shows and movies.” Warner Bros. President of Creative Development and Worldwide Production Greg Silverman adds that it “helps create an environment where creativity is rewarded, encouraged and allowed to flourish.”
This is the first time MPAA members have offered something like this, the organization says. The service embraces large providers including iTunes, Amazon, and Hulu as well as niche-oriented destinations such as SnagFilms and WolfeOnDemand to include new tentpoles, indies, genre films, and classics. The MPAA adds that it plans to enlist additional partners.
Dodd cites a study from KPMG in September that found that, as of December, 94% of “the most popular and critically acclaimed films” were available legally via online video-on-demand services. Specifically, it located 96% of the 100 top domestic box office hits in 2011, 90% of the top 20 for each year from 2000 to 2010, 81% of the American Film Institute’s top 100 critically acclaimed films, and 79% of the 85 Oscar-winning best films. In addition, KPMG found legitimate sites for 96% of current season episodes for the top 100 US TV shows in 2012, 96% of pre-2011 hit shows, and 87% of current season episodes for the top 100 TV shows in 2013. The study did not include cable and satellite TV Everywhere platforms.