Inspiration for creating (blockbuster) movies can be found in books. There are hundreds of books which have been turned into movies. Some successful, others not so successful. There's no real formula to determine if a movie is gonna be successful or not. Having the right producer(s), director, a large budget, and a star cast doesn't guarantee a good movie (with lots of money)..... but it might help.
Later this week several Hollywood-related companies will announce a new digital media distribution system that's suppose to ignite digital downloads of movies (and possible other digital content). They call it DECE (Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem). The key-feature being 'portability'.
This time a name without 'protection' or 'rights' in its name, but the result is much the same.
In the 'old' days DRM was implemented by protecting the resource with a key, and if you had the proper 'key' on your device the content was playable. Downside was that playback was mainly limited to only one device, or it was OS/player dependent (Windows -> Windows Media Player, or Apple iTunes, OSX -> Itunes).
If you wanted it to play on another device you had a problem, since you lacked the proper key to 'unlock' the digital content. Thankfully Apple has lot's of DRM-free mp3's in it's iTunes store, but not everything (like the movies / TV Shows) is DRM free, or watchable on lots of devices.
I must admit that I participated in getting this movie on number 1 on this chart.... BUT, I also saw this movie in the opening weekend in the theater, and I own the movie on a Blu-Ray disc.
Since I don't have the capabilities to rip the movie myself, I downloaded the ripped version. No nag screens and other crap on the downloaded version, so I prefer to watch the ripped/downloaded version over the original Blu-Ray disc (also see this posting) on my Popcorn Hour media player.
So being the most downloaded movie doesn't necessarily mean most pirated (in my opinion).
Sure, there still are lots of people who'll pirate anything they get their hands on, but that doesn't mean that they would even think about going to the cinema or buy the disc. The studios wouldn't make money of them anyway.
But hé, that's just my humble opinion........
'Networked Media Tank' a.k.a. 'Popcorn Hour' is another name for an awesome piece of hardware. It's a small device (the size of a 8-port desktop switch)) that enables you to view media on your TV. You name the format, and it plays it. No matter what the resolution is.
The Popcorn Hour (PCH) is a specialized piece of hardware just for decoding media. Even MKV (Matroska Containers) files are supported. I tried this by downloading a sample of Iron Man in 1080p with DTS audio, and it performed flawlessly. The picture quality was superb.
Besides watching video's you can also;
- listen to music
- watch your holiday pictures
- watch (pre-programmed) online media like YouTube
- use it as a torrent downloader
- use it as a usenet downloader (NZBGet)
I currently use mine solely with the HDMI connector hooked up to my Pioneer A/V Receiver. This way I get to enjoy all the benefits of HD content. There are numerous ways of connecting the PCH to your TV/Home Theater. Both analog and digital.
One little drawback; don't plan on doing a lot of pushing buttons on the remote when you are copying lot's of files over the network to the device. I had to reset my PCH twice in an hour. The CPU for the operating System (OS) on the device is for the interface and basic network connectivity (there's a CPU for displaying media, and a CPU for the OS). So if you're gonna stress the device it might hang.
So, if you're thinking about a Home Theater PC (HTPC) for the purpose of watching media this is the device for you. If you plan on recording TV you'll need another device for doing that.
Why buy them? I bought a couple of movies in the last couple of weeks. Including the 'Band of Brothers' DVD-box (probably the best TV-miniseries ever). Just to be reminded (again) that the original product (in general) is annoying as hell.
I started the DVD, and the first thing that I saw were some crappy trailers of crappy movies. The menu appeared only after I had FFWD'ed every single one of them.
After watching the first episode I wanted to quickly skip to the second.... No way of doing that besides stopping and starting the DVD from scratch. Which results in trailers etc. of the same (crappy) movies I have no interest in..... Every f*cking button, which might guide me to the menu, on my remote was unresponsive.
First thing on my list when I wake up tomorrow; rip the DVD's, remove every piece of DRM crap and enjoy the remaining episodes my way.
Honest people are hijacked by the MPAA (and associates) by forcing all this DRM crap upon those who buy legitimate DVD's. No wonder people are ripping and copying DRM protected content.
Every now-and-then you try to do the good thing, only to be reminded why you were ripping DVD's in the first place......
B.t.w. mister Willis doesn't have much to do (see calendar), and he obviously has some bluetooth device, otherwise one wouldn't put the Bluetooth menu in the standby menu on the phone.... Other observations show that there is no cell reception and that his battery is almost empty. This does match up with the events (to come) in the movie. So they did mind the (very) small details.
IS IT THURSDAY YET???
UPDATE: Just saw the movie, and it was awesome. The special effects were beyond awesome. There are lot's of references to other blockbusters like Independence Day, Armageddon, and Men in Black