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THE MORNING BUZZ: Happy Birthday, DVD!

20 Jun, 2002 By: Thomas K. Arnold

Pardon me for doing a little horn-tooting, but Video Store Magazine this week is involved in project of which I am most proud. In partnership with the DVD Entertainment Group and the DVD Forum, we will be producing DVD at 5: A Conference Commemorating. The event will be held June 27 and 28 at the Marina Beach Marriott in Marina Del Rey, California.

As my regular readers know I have been an avid DVD backer since Day One. Our magazine has consistently been at the forefront of DVD, with a dedicated DVD section and liberal DVD coverage even before the format really began taking off.

Last summer, we came up with the idea of staging a conference to celebrate DVD's fifth birthday, and after many months of talks and meetings with the DVD Entertainment Group we reached an agreement that hopefully some of you, at least, will be able to attend.

One of the high points of the panel, for me, is the directors panel, hosted by Scott Bowles of USA Today and featuring such top directors as John Singleton, Allan Moyle and Nicholas Meyer.

While DVD has revitalized the maturing home entertainment community, it also has excited Hollywood's creative community in a way VHS never did. DVD truly has brought mainstream theatrical Hollywood and its leading “after market” together. Directors and other talent are involved in the DVD during the development and production of their films and this has given home entertainment a much higher standing in the Hollywood food chain.

Video has always been responsible for the lion's share of Hollywood's revenues, but it's never gotten the respect it deserves. Now, that's beginning to change.

Another panel I'm looking forward to is the DVD producers panel, focusing on what many say is now the hot new job in Hollywood. Bruce Apar, who actually came up with the DVD at 5 name last summer during one of our many brainstorming sessions, is flying in from New York to moderate this discussion, which I'm sure will be lively and compelling.

DVD at 5 has a lot more to offer as well. I'll be moderating a “Presidents Panel” with the heads of most major studios' home entertainment units. Kurt Indvik, Video Store Magazine's editor-in-chief, will host a session called “DVD When It's Ten,” with key analysts and retailers doing a fair amount of crystal-ball-gazing. And our publisher, Don Rosenberg, will moderate a panel of key independents, appropriately titled, “Beyond Hollywood.”

I look forward to seeing at least some of you there. For those who can't be there, please stay tuned to the Hive for continuous coverage.

If anyone deserves most of the credit for DVD's success, it is the consumer. And this consumer enthusiasm, it has been said, is also at least partly responsible for the record box office numbers we're seeing of late.

DVD is not just fueling interest in watching movies at home, but watching movies, period.

Can anyone out there think of a better reason to celebrate?

To register for the DVD@5 conference, click the logo to the left or here.

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