Matt Damon is worried about the end of DVD and Blu-ray


Matt Damon, the famous Hollywood producer and actor known for his roles in Elysium, Good Will Hunting and The Bourne Identity, says that the movie industry is likely to change drastically due to the collapse of DVD and Blu-ray sales. According to him, independent and auteur films are likely to be increasingly rare.

The collapse of sales

While Blu-ray remains unrivalled among moviegoers for its incomparable video and audio quality, physical sales are declining year after year in favor of VOD services. This is an upheaval for the film industry, with movies by the best directors increasingly available directly on streaming platforms, without even being shown at theaters. These new trends are shaking up the economy of the movie industry, but according to Matt Damon, they could also impact the creativity of directors.

It was during the First We Feast channel’s Hot Ones show, which aired in August 2021 and recently became viral on the Internet, that the famous actor expressed his fears about the uncertain future of the seventh art. He says, “DVDs used to be a huge part of our business and revenue, but technology has made that obsolete. We used to be able to afford not to make all of the revenue from a film’s theatrical release, because DVDs were released right after it. Six months later, the sales of this new medium were almost like a second theatrical release. And, when that model collapsed, it profoundly changed the type of films you could make.”

Without Blu-ray and DVD sales, the movie industry is deprived of a significant portion of its revenue, preventing producers from taking risks and innovating.

The end of independent films

“Now that DVD and Blu-ray are kind of gone, you can’t really make the same movies anymore. For example, I made a film called Behind the Candelabra.When I went to talk to the studio executives, they explained to me that the budget would be about $25 million, and that they would have to put out another $25 million for advertising costs. That brings us to $50 million. Half of that has to go back to the exhibitors. So, in practical terms, this film has to make $100 million before we start making a profit. So the very idea of raising $100 million with this love story between two men quickly became a very difficult gamble. It wouldn’t have been in the 90s. Back then, you could make these kinds of movies.” As it turned out, the film, which was screened at the Cannes Film Festival, earned only $13.3 million worldwide and went straight to HBO in the United States.

The film Behind the Candelabra with Matt Damon was a real gamble. Without DVD and Blu-ray sales, the film would not have been profitable.

A risk for the longevity of films

The rise of VOD and streaming services implies a different production mode. As the actor pointed out, films are now designed to generate all of their revenues in theaters. Studios are therefore more cautious and are fearful of taking risks and financing ambitious films that aren’t franchise blockbusters. The disappearance of physical media in favor of streaming platforms also threatens the visibility of films and series over time. A lot of content is frequently removed from platforms such as Netflix, Disney+ or Prime Video. Recently, HBO Max removed more than 37 programs, including many originals that can’t be found anywhere else. With the upcoming release of Avatar in theaters, the first installment has been removed from the Disney+ catalog. Although the Blu-ray of James Cameron’s blockbuster can be found easily, this isn’t possible for films without a physical release.

In addition to offering unparalleled audio and video quality compared to VOD services, theSony UBP-X800M2 Blu-ray player ensures that you can enjoy movies without being dependent on platform changes and withdrawals.

Matt Damon seems nostalgic for the 90s when the DVD was king and made many movies successful, sometimes years after their theatrical release. This upheaval may discourage producers from taking risks and instead encourage them to duplicate tried-and-tested movies. The best way to support the movie industry (and to make Matt Damon happy again) is to go to movie theaters and buying physical copies of films to watch them with a Blu-ray player.

Share your opinion!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.