Rent (And Eventually Buy) Miramax Films via Facebook

Miramax has a movie date with Facebook users in the U.S., the U.K., and Turkey, with France and Germany on line for the next showing.

Miramax has a movie date with Facebook users in the U.S., the U.K., and Turkey, with France and Germany on line for the next showing.

The studio debuted Facebook app Miramax eXperience, which streams movies over Facebook and incorporates the social network’s sharing features.

Miramax eXperience premiered with 20 films available for rental in the U.S., and 10 apiece in the U.K. and Germany, according to paidContent, and the movies are available for 30 Facebook Credits ($3) apiece.

The number of titles available via Facebook puts Miramax ahead of competitors Warner Brothers, Paramount and Netflix, among others.

Rentals are active for 30 days, but once users start to watch them, the viewing window is 48 hours. Miramax eXperience films can also be viewed via a browser-based player on iPad tablets and via Google TV.

The app also allows users to invite and interact with friends, and incorporate films they are watching into their news feeds and profiles. The beta version focuses on the rental model, but it aims to allow users to purchase films and store them permanently online.

Miramax Chief Executive Officer Mike Lang told paidContent:

We wanted to fish where the fish are. We could have created the most robust in the world, and other than my family members, who would be there? We believe that over time, as an industry, we have to figure out a way to buy content digitally and use it interoperably across all devices.

Launching on VOD (video-on-demand) in beta is the easiest way to launch. We didn’t want to offer too much to buy yet. It’s going to take a lot of work on our end to get more interoperability. Part of it for me is that the current model of content for digital doesn’t work. It’s a bad consumer proposition. Consumers aren’t sure how to use it and own it. It’s a very kludgy experience for them.

And Facebook Vice President of Partnerships and Platform Marketing Dan Rose told paidContent:

We’re talking to all of the movie studios. One of the things Miramax approached us about was the notion of being able to buy on Facebook and watch on other platforms. We can be the identity platform behind that type of experience. We charge 30 percent for Facebook Credits. When you redeem, we pass through 70 percent of that.

It’s still early. These are experiments on the platform.

Here’s more from the official press release introducing Miramax eXperience:

Our goal with the Miramax app is to offer consumers a great user experience where they can watch movie clips and feature length films, play games, and share the experience with their friends within the Facebook community. And in doing so, we aim to ultimately build our reach to 150 million-plus Facebook friends within the next 18 months.

The Miramax eXperience integrates into user profiles and news feeds and will hopefully become a part of the fabric of many discussions. It was important to us that Facebook users could easily invite and interact with their friends, by leveraging the social graph via games and other features such as enabling friends to “like” movies. We are also excited that the app allows users to view Miramax films on multiple devices, including their PC, iPad, or TV. And Miramax friends around the globe will not be left out, as the App will be made available to Facebook users worldwide. Finally, we’re using Facebook Credits and Facebook Connect to make it easier to use the service.

In addition, you’ll notice that we launched the App first with just rental VOD, but our ultimate goal is to give consumers the opportunity to buy films and store them in their own cloud-based digital locker — to then access the content anywhere they want, across ALL devices. Yes, that’s right — any PC, smartphone, tablet, or TV, whether at home, on the go, on vacation, etc.

The list of films currently available via Miramax eXperience is:

  • U.S.: Adventureland, Chicago, Clerks, Cold Mountain, Extract, From Dusk Till Dawn, Gangs of New York, Gone Baby Gone, Good Will Hunting, Jackie Brown, Kill Bill, Kill Bill 2, No Country for Old Men, Pulp Fiction, Shall We Dance (2004), Sin City, Spy Kids, Swingers, The Switch, and Trainspotting.
  • U.K.: Chicago, Cold Mountain, From Dusk Till Dawn, Good Will Hunting, Jackie Brown, Kill Bill, Kill Bill 2, Shall We Dance (2004), Sin City, and Spy Kids.
  • Turkey: Adventureland, Chicago, Clerks, Cold Mountain, From Dusk Till Dawn, Gone Baby Gone, Good Will Hunting, Jackie Brown, Spy Kids, and Swingers.

Readers, are you interested in renting and, eventually, buying films via Facebook? And does the ability to view those films on multiple devices factor into your decisions?