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New Line Changes Its Video Name to Home Entertainment -- and Ups the Ante on DVD Extras

19 Apr, 2001 By: Kurt Indvik

First came the Platinum Collection, with loaded DVD titles like Se7en and Wag the Dog. Now, New Line Home Entertainment has not only changed its name (from Home Video), but one-upped its own Platinum DVD line, Infinifilm, a souped-up DVD label catering to movie lovers who crave boatloads of extras.

"New Line has been at the leading edge of the emerging DVD phenomenon, and the introduction of Infinifilm continues that tradition," says Stephen Einhorn, president and c.o.o.

Infinifilm DVDs, which will debut in stores July 10, take viewers deeper into the movie, not just through superior visual and audioquality, but through a variety of in-depth features and pop-up menus seen sporadically throughout the film.

"The pop-up menu is set to give you a guided tour throughout the movie," says Mike Mulvihill, v.p. of content development.

The first film to spearhead the Infinifilm collection is the Kevin Costner title Thirteen Days, coming out July 10.

"[This film] is an ideal title with which to launch the Infinifilm brand because the historic nature of the film really lends itself toexploring the ‘beyond the movie’ material and allows us to capitalize on the benefits of DVDs," says Matt Lasorsa, senior v.p. of marketing. "Wefeel there’s a lot of rental [capacity] with this title."

The Thirteen Days Infinifilm edition, which retails at $26.98, boasts a48-minute documentary, "The Root of the Cuban Missile Crisis," exploring the origins of the Cold War; 17 biographical sketches on the major players involved in the Cuban Missile Crisis; a 10-minute feature examining the challenges in creating a historical film; audio commentary from archival tapes as well as from recent interviews with Cuban MissileCrisis participants and historians; and an optional historical information subtitle track, introducing information throughout themovie.

The pop-up menus appear at the bottom of the screen, much like the subtitles in a foreign film. Viewers can then "go beyond the film" thenand there, accessing the background information, or wait until after the film is over, says Evan Edelist, v.p. of postproduction, video andtechnical operations. "They offer the viewer a non-linear experience," he says.

The non-linear viewing option is also available with the 48-minute documentary "The Roots of the Cuban Missile Crisis," which was created exclusively for inclusion on the Thirteen Days Infinifilm DVD. Viewerscan watch the feature in its entirety, or in snippets within the context of the film. For instance, if viewers are watching a briefing in the Oval Office, they can click to the background information, accessing interviews with actual participants in the events being reenacted.

Although the Infinifilm option sounds complex, New Line executives say it’s not. "We’ve taken extra care in helping the consumer along," Lasorsa says. "There are question marks throughout the Infinifilm DVD menus that viewers can click on to find more information about options."

15 minutes, Blow and Rush Hour 2 are three titles being considered forfuture Infinifilm DVDs.

New Line will introduce the pubic to Infinifilm through extensive television and print advertising, Lasorsa says. Lasorsa also hopes togenerate "buzz" in the DVD community on the Web.

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