Disney (DIS) and Sony (SNE), in an effort to combat piracy, are offering on-demand streaming of movies that are still in theaters — in South Korea, that is.
Disney and Sony are using South Korea to test whether this new way of releasing movies makes sense, as the country has the eighth-largest film market in the world.
This is the first time major American studios have offered anyone the ability to either buy a ticket or stream the movie to their home, reports the Wall Street Journal. Other Hollywood studios are said to be watching both Sony and Disney while the companies test the format.
“It’s way too early to say if this will be a policy for any [Hollywood] studio or even a norm, but it seems to have potential,” a person close to testing told the Wall Street Journal.
If the new release format catches on, it could spell trouble for movie theaters, which have seen attendance decline by 15% in the last 10 years.