Tristan Louis (TNL.net)

Streaming movie hits – 2013 edition

Film may have been largely abandoned as a storing device but it serves as a useful metaphor for movies.

For the past few years, I’ve been taking the temperature of the online streaming world by looking at how many of the previous year’s box office winners were legally available for online streaming (see 2013, 2012, 2011). This year we seem to see some major progress in how Hollywood is treating the internet, finally offering large swath of content to people who are willing to watch it legally. Let’s take a look…

All you can eat

Netflix and Amazon Prime have established themselves on an all-you-can-eat model around movies and, to date, have not fared that well with recent content. So let’s take a look at this year’s movies:

Rank Title Netflix Amazon Prime DVD/Blue Ray
1 The Hunger
Games: Catching Fire
No No Yes
2 Iron Man 3 Yes No Yes
3 Despicable
Me 2
No No Yes
4 Frozen No No Yes
5 Man of Steel No No Yes
6 Monsters
University
No No Yes
7 Gravity No No Yes
8 The Hobbit: The
Desolation of Smaug
No No Yes
9 Fast & Furious 6 No No Yes
10 Oz The Great and
Powerful
No No Yes
11 Star Trek Into
Darkness
No No Yes
12 Thor: The Dark World No No Yes
13 World War Z No No Yes
14 The Croods Yes No Yes
15 The Heat No No Yes
16 We’re the
Millers
No No Yes
17 The Great
Gatsby (2013)
No No Yes
18 The Conjuring No No Yes
19 Identity
Thief
No No Yes
20 Grown Ups 2 No No Yes
21 The Wolverine No No Yes
22 G.I. Joe:
Retaliation
No No Yes
23 Anchorman 2:
The Legend Continues
No No Yes
24 Cloudy with a
Chance of Meatballs 2
No No Yes
25 Now You See Me No No Yes
26 Lee Daniels’ The
Butler
No No Yes
27 The Hangover
Part III
No No Yes
28 Epic No No Yes
29 Captain
Phillips
No No Yes
30 American Hustle No No Yes
31 Jackass
Presents: Bad Grandpa
No No Yes
32 Pacific Rim No No Yes
33 This is
the End
No No Yes
34 Olympus
Has Fallen
Yes No Yes
35 42 No No Yes
36 Elysium No No Yes
37 Planes No No Yes
38 The Lone Ranger No No Yes
39 Oblivion No No Yes
40 Insidious
Chapter 2
No No Yes
41 Turbo No No Yes
42 The Wolf
of Wall Street
No No Yes
43 2 Guns No No Yes
44 White House
Down
No No Yes
45 Mama No No Yes
46 Safe Haven No No Yes
47 The Smurfs 2 No No Yes
48 Saving Mr.
Banks
No No Yes
49 The Best Man
Holiday
No No Yes
50 Percy
Jackson: Sea of Monsters
Yes No Yes
51 A Good Day to Die
Hard
No No Yes
52 Warm Bodies No No Yes
53 Jack
the Giant Slayer
No No Yes
54 The Purge No No Yes
55 Last Vegas No No Yes
56 Ender’s Game No No Yes
57 Prisoners No No Yes
58 After Earth No No Yes
59 Escape
From Planet Earth
No No Yes
60 Hansel
and Gretel: Witch Hunters
Yes No Yes
61 Free Birds No No Yes
62 Evil Dead
(2013)
No No Yes
63 The Secret
Life of Walter Mitty
No No Yes
64 Red 2 No No Yes
65 Tyler
Perry’s A Madea Christmas
No No No
66 Tyler
Perry’s Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor
No No Yes
67 The Call No No Yes
68 Pain and Gain No No Yes
69 Lone Survivor No No Yes
70 Gangster
Squad
No No Yes
71 Jurassic
Park 3D
No No No
72 The Internship No No Yes
73 Instructions
Not Included
No No Yes
74 Snitch No No Yes
75 Riddick No No Yes
76 A Haunted
House
Yes No Yes
77 12 Years
a Slave
No No Yes
78 47 Ronin No No Yes
79 The Family (2013) No No Yes
80 Carrie (2013) No No Yes
81 Texas
Chainsaw 3D
Yes Yes Yes
82 Walking
with Dinosaurs
No No Yes
83 R.I.P.D. No No Yes
84 Blue Jasmine No No Yes
85 Kevin Hart:
Let Me Explain
Yes No Yes
86 Side Effects
(2013)
Yes No Yes
87 Scary Movie 5 No No Yes
88 The
Mortal Instruments: City of Bones
No No Yes
89 Delivery Man No No No
90 One
Direction: This is Us
No No Yes
91 Grudge Match No No No
92 Kick-Ass 2 No No Yes
93 Rush (2013) No No Yes
94 The Host (2013) Yes No Yes
95 The World’s End No No Yes
96 21 and Over Yes No Yes
97 Escape Plan No No Yes
98 Don Jon No No Yes
99 The
Incredible Burt Wonderstone
No No Yes
100 Philomena No No Yes

With 11 titles available this year, Netflix seems to have made a tremendous jump compared to other years (last year, it had only 5 of the top 100 movies from the previous year). So while Netflix’s 2013 story has been about its original content (House of Cards, Orange is the New Black), it seems the company is also quietly working on improving its position in delivering studio content. Meanwhile, Amazon Prime comes in with only 1 title (Texas Chainsaw 3D) in its offering, even less than it did in the previous year. This, of course, is compared to a total of 96 titles being available on DVD today so if you’re looking at the all you can eat model to feed your recent movie habit, you’re out of luck.

But let’s now take a look at whether you can rent those movies in an on-demand fashion over the internet.

VOD

To do so, I pulled data on the most popular rental services online: iTunes, Amazon on-demand, Vudu, and the emerging YouTube service.

Rank Title Amazon digital rental iTunes Vudu YouTube DVD/Blue Ray
1 The Hunger
Games: Catching Fire
No No No No Yes
2 Iron Man 3 Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
3 Despicable
Me 2
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
4 Frozen Yes Purchase only Yes No Yes
5 Man of Steel No Yes Yes Yes Yes
6 Monsters
University
Yes Yes Yes No Yes
7 Gravity Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
8 The Hobbit: The
Desolation of Smaug
No No No No Yes
9 Fast & Furious 6 No Yes Yes Yes Yes
10 Oz The Great and
Powerful
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
11 Star Trek Into
Darkness
Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only Yes Yes
12 Thor: The Dark World No No No No Yes
13 World War Z No Yes No Yes Yes
14 The Croods No Yes Yes Yes Yes
15 The Heat No Yes Yes Yes Yes
16 We’re the
Millers
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
17 The Great
Gatsby (2013)
No Yes Yes Yes Yes
18 The Conjuring No Yes Yes Yes Yes
19 Identity
Thief
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
20 Grown Ups 2 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
21 The Wolverine No Yes Yes Yes Yes
22 G.I. Joe:
Retaliation
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
23 Anchorman 2:
The Legend Continues
No No No No Yes
24 Cloudy with a
Chance of Meatballs 2
No No Purchase only No Yes
25 Now You See Me No Yes Purchase only Yes Yes
26 Lee Daniels’ The
Butler
No Yes No Yes Yes
27 The Hangover
Part III
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
28 Epic Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
29 Captain
Phillips
Yes Yes Yes No Yes
30 American Hustle No No No No Yes
31 Jackass
Presents: Bad Grandpa
No Purchase only No No Yes
32 Pacific Rim No Yes No Yes Yes
33 This is
the End
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
34 Olympus
Has Fallen
No Purchase only Yes No Yes
35 42 No Yes Yes Yes Yes
36 Elysium No Yes Yes Yes Yes
37 Planes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
38 The Lone Ranger No Yes Yes Yes Yes
39 Oblivion No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
40 Insidious
Chapter 2
No Yes Yes Yes Yes
41 Turbo Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
42 The Wolf
of Wall Street
No No No No Yes
43 2 Guns Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
44 White House
Down
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
45 Mama No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
46 Safe Haven No Yes Yes Yes Yes
47 The Smurfs 2 No Yes Yes Yes Yes
48 Saving Mr.
Banks
No No No No Yes
49 The Best Man
Holiday
No No No No Yes
50 Percy
Jackson: Sea of Monsters
No Yes Yes Yes Yes
51 A Good Day to Die
Hard
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
52 Warm Bodies No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
53 Jack
the Giant Slayer
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
54 The Purge No Yes Yes Yes Yes
55 Last Vegas No No No No Yes
56 Ender’s Game No No No No Yes
57 Prisoners Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
58 After Earth No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
59 Escape
From Planet Earth
No Purchase only Yes Yes Yes
60 Hansel
and Gretel: Witch Hunters
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
61 Free Birds No No No No Yes
62 Evil Dead
(2013)
No Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
63 The Secret
Life of Walter Mitty
No No No No Yes
64 Red 2 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
65 Tyler
Perry’s A Madea Christmas
Yes No No No No
66 Tyler
Perry’s Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor
Purchase only No No No Yes
67 The Call Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
68 Pain and Gain Yes Yes No Yes Yes
69 Lone Survivor No No No No Yes
70 Gangster
Squad
Purchase only Yes Purchase only No Yes
71 Jurassic
Park 3D
No No No No No
72 The Internship Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
73 Instructions
Not Included
Yes Yes Purchase only Yes Yes
74 Snitch Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
75 Riddick Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
76 A Haunted
House
Yes Yes No Yes Yes
77 12 Years
a Slave
Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
78 47 Ronin No No No No Yes
79 The Family (2013) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
80 Carrie (2013) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
81 Texas
Chainsaw 3D
Purchase only Yes Yes No Yes
82 Walking
with Dinosaurs
No No No No Yes
83 R.I.P.D. Yes Yes No No Yes
84 Blue Jasmine Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
85 Kevin Hart:
Let Me Explain
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
86 Side Effects
(2013)
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
87 Scary Movie 5 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
88 The
Mortal Instruments: City of Bones
Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
89 Delivery Man No No No No No
90 One
Direction: This is Us
Purchase only Yes Yes Yes Yes
91 Grudge Match No No No No No
92 Kick-Ass 2 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
93 Rush (2013) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
94 The Host (2013) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
95 The World’s End Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
96 21 and Over Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
97 Escape Plan Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only No Yes
98 Don Jon Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
99 The
Incredible Burt Wonderstone
Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only Purchase only Yes
100 Philomena No No No No Yes

Here, we see substantial improvements compared to last year. iTunes has 55 of the top 100 available for rent, closely followed by YouTube (52) and Vudu (49) but Amazon is trailing with only 35 titles. If you throw in titles one can purchase (generally purchases are in the $15-20 range as opposed to rentals which average around $5), iTunes has 78 titles, Vudu 72, YouTube 53, and Amazon 46. The puzzling thing her is around Amazon’s video on demand service: on the one hand, they’ve been aggressively promoting Amazon Prime and building out new original content and on the other, they appear to be trailing the competition in terms of VOD.

You may wonder what it looks like compared to previous years so I’ll delve into my historical data for rentals:

Amazon iTunes Vudu YouTube DVD/Blue Ray
2010 48 46 46 No data 74
2011 45 44 44 No data 74
2012 44 44 46 38 77
2013 35 55 49 52 96

The first thing that jumped at me was how many of the titles were actually available on BlueRay/DVD this year. I actually went back to look at the sources as it seemed incongruous but the data appeared valid. Secondly, we seem to be witnessing the quiet rise of YouTube as a rental service and the floundering of Amazon VOD.

If you factor in sales, the data looks as follows:

Amazon iTunes Vudu YouTube DVD/Blue Ray
2010 56 60 57 No data 74
2011 61 62 61 No data 74
2012 57 59 59 38 77
2013 46 78 72 53 96

Here, we’re still seeing an Amazon service that appears to be struggling compared to the competition. iTunes and Vudu are strong players in the sales space while YouTube seems to have little interest in in.

Conclusion

2013 and 2014 are boom years for media streaming. While a lot has been written about the emergency of Netflix, Amazon and others as sponsors of new filmed content, another interesting story the data gives us is that 2013 seemed to have been the turning point in terms of Hollywood’s acceptance of streaming as a legitimate form of media consumption.

However, we are also seeing an industry that is clinging to the old release window model, distributing movies on plastic before they do so online (in fairness, the time lag between the two has been growing increasingly small so one can hope they will eventually do away with that approach).

With the Oscars broadcasting tonight, one could wonder whether the next step for the movie industry is not same time release. For example, many of the movies in the running are still not available online, even though they have been in movie theaters for a couple of months already. One could hope that the movie industry will look into this practice and decide that they want to release movies in a legal fashion earlier so that interested fans could catch them online. That said, there are still more movies available on plastic disks than there are online, which brings up the question as to why aren’t we seeing more simultaneous releases on DVD/BlueRay and online.

So kudos to Hollywood for embracing digital and now on to the next challenge of making content available in everyone’s home (for a fee, of course) at the same time it is in theaters.

Methodology

To capture the data set, we went to canistream.it and plugged in the titles of the top 100 winners at the box office in 2013. The research was performed during the first week of February 2014. I would like to thank Mary LoPorto for her help in gathering this data set.