[THR] Warner Bros. Korea to Debut Films Via Online Services

October 14, 2014

[THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER] Amid the surge of the South Korean online market for movies in recent years, Warner Brothers Korea will make films without theatrical release plans in the country available on the online video services of telecom giants starting Oct. 16.

Koreans will be able to see Blended, a rom-com starring Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler, for the first time this week via a new Warner-themed film VOD service offered on KT Olleh TV, the top local HD IPTV service provided by Korea’s main telecom operator KT, as well as LG U+tv, a similar service operated by telecom firm LG, among others. The companies’ IPTV products typically offer streaming  services for a monthly fee that give access to a collection of movies, along with download offers.

Other Warner titles that have not yet hit Korean theaters are also set to be released in online form, including Clint Eastwood’sJersey Boys and Ben Falcone/Melissa McCarthy’s Tammy. Films that the studio will debut through web channels are ones unlikely to be released in Korean cinemas.

“There are more than 10 million IPTV users in Korea, and so we have decided to pioneer this new distribution channel,” said a spokesperson for Warner Brothers Korea. “It’s a service model aiming to revive the local video market amid fast-growing digital platforms. We are also providing a legitimate way for consumers to watch movies that did not receive a theatrical release here.”