All major Hollywood films studios are embarking on a new antipiracy strategy. Seems that what is apparently plaguing the music industry is now starting to affect the film industry as well. As it turns out, people are recording movies using handheld video cameras and then distributing these copies, globally, over the internet. Just check out FastTrackMovies and if you've got Kazaa installed you can start downloading thousands of titles. If you're a little more advanced, you can use a program called mIRC in conjunction with any number of irc search engines (1, 2, 3).
The question that's been burning a hole in my brain recently is does this piracy actually cost the industry money at the box office? Well let's see. Box office numbers don't lie. A list of the top ten biggest opening weekends EVER is comprised of 3 films released in the last month, all of which had pirated copies readily available the day of opening. Does that make sense?
How can 3 of the biggest opening weekends EVER, possibly be plagued by piracy? Had copies not been available on the internet would the box office totals have been more? We'll never know. But think of this: if a film can be watched with degraded resolution on a computer screen instead of a THX equipped theatre and offer equal enjoyment, is the problem the piracy or the product? Is it possible that the internet copy actually increases box office numbers? Is piracy the secret promotional tool of the Hollywood studios?
The Hulk is currently available on the net as a Work Print, which means it came from the studios invovled, so you tell me, Piracy, Promotion or Poor Product?