New start-up Beanbag Entertainment looks to sustain the film industry through streaming technology

Perth, Australia, Aug. 27, 2017 - Emerging Australian movie streaming service Beanbag Entertainment ( today revealed that, based on its research, 88% of people would use a legal streaming platform if it were available today.

Beanbag Entertainment polled 4500 people across 61 countries as part of its research into the viability of online streaming during a movie’s theatrical release window. Currently, movies are not released to DVD or digital download until 90 to 120 days have passed.

Ash Oliver, co-founder of Beanbag Entertainment, said, “We know there are movie lovers out there who, like us, have a real desire to see new movies at home instead of going to the cinema. When I think of who Beanbag will help, I think of the time-starved parents, the cash-strapped students, and others who feel it is unnecessary to have to see all movies at the cinema during this window. There are also those who want to watch new international movie releases, but can’t because they are not available locally.”

Oliver added that their research confirms there is a real and burgeoning need for a platform like Beanbag Entertainment. “Current distribution methods are not able to reach the entire market of potential movie-viewers. There are thousands of people out there who cannot get to the movies or do not want to because it is not practical or desirable. 85% of people surveyed said they often find they cannot make the movies when they want to. Allowing these people to view movies during the theatrical release window is critical in ensuring movies remain profitable now and in the future.”

He continued, “We found that almost all people who downloaded pirated movies more than 10 times per month were equally as likely as any other person to use our service. This means that if our service were up and running today, over 90% of the time a new movie is watched anywhere in the world would be on a legal platform.”

Oliver also allayed longstanding concerns among film studios and theatre owners about piracy and financial risks. Studios are concerned about the impact on exhibitors if movies were also streamed during the theatrical release window.

“We support efforts to bring movies to home viewers but we differ in our views of pricing and financial models. Our service is designed to give studios greater peace of mind about foraying into the online streaming business during this window. It will also provide a great opportunity to national film industries, such as Australia’s, to boost production and popularity.”

Oliver assured that, “Beanbag will significantly lower piracy within the industry due to the affordability and convenience of the service. We have discovered that out of 100 people, just under 35 stream or download newly released movies illegally. However, with our service in place, that number could be as low as two.”

Beanbag’s research also suggests that the impact on cinemas may not be as significant as believed. “Almost all the people we have interviewed consider an at-home digital video and the cinema movie two completely different choices,” said Oliver.

Oliver said the positive outcome of their research has given them impetus to start discussions with the industry. “We want to meet the interests of all those involved in the industry—customers, studios, cinemas, filmmakers, and distributors. We have considered current cinema attendance in our financial recommendations, and with this we believe our service will deliver immense value to everyone.”

He noted that Beanbag is looking forward to working with filmmakers, “Anyone who wants to expand the way they reach their audiences while their movies are playing in theatres.”

Oliver concluded, “Ultimately, we believe that customers will be happier with more options, and cinemas and distributors will make more money than they do currently.”