Advanced Television

Warner early release dates in Korea

October 6, 2008

Warner Brothers Entertainment has commenced releasing its films online in South Korea before they are released in the country on DVD, shaking up the time-honoured Hollywood distribution model and potentially paving the way for a sharp increase in movie downloads.The studio has targeted South Korea because it has high broadband penetration. It hopes that releasing films online first will cut down on DVD piracy, which is rampant in the country. Kevin Tsujihara, head of Warner Bros' home entertainment group, said: "Korea used to be a very robust video market but we have been hit very hard by piracy. We have high hopes of turning that market around and legitimising it again . . . all the ingredients are there."If the move is successful, Warners will target other countries. It is considering bringing forward the online release of films in China, potentially the world's largest home entertainment market.

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