Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Online release of 'It Might Get Loud' scheduled to precede DVD release by two weeks

Davis Guggenheim, the director of "It Might Get Loud," has just contributed a Q&A with Billboard.biz. (At first, the site incorrectly listed his first name as "David.")

In the interview, Guggenheim plugs the upcoming DVD and Blu-Ray releases of his film documentary that centers on guitarists Jimmy Page, The Edge and Jack White. But he also discusses an online release of the film by iTunes.

The iTunes download of the movie is currently scheduled for Dec. 8, two weeks earlier than the physical releases on DVD and Blu-Ray on Dec. 22.

Yukari Iwatani Kane of the Wall Street Journal's Digits blog reports this is part of a new iTunes focus on "Music Movies" -- "music documentaries, concert films, musicals and other music-related content."
"As part of the new iTunes feature, Apple has signed two deals to distribute music movies exclusively for a limited period ahead of their release through other outlets. The first is a new concert film, 'Kings of Leon, Live at the O2,' featuring the rock band. It will be offered a week before other outlets on Nov. 3. The other is Davis Guggenheim's music documentary 'It Might Get Loud' about the history of the electric guitar, focusing on Jimmy Page, the Edge and Jack White. That will be available first on iTunes on Dec. 8, ahead of its wider distribution on Dec. 22."
From the interview:
WSJ: How did this partnership with iTunes come about?

Guggenheim: We all felt like this was the kind of movie that is perfect for iTunes. I'm sort of suspicious of the fads, but when you can imagine that at ten o'clock on a Friday night, wanting to see a certain movie, specifically a rock and roll movie, you're sort of following the instinct that you might have had in the '70s in Greenwich Village, when you could walk out and go find films like this. After you watch the movie you might say, "I'm going to download that song by Jimmy Page." If you were a music lover, you follow these paths.
Guggenheim also spoke with the L.A. Times blog Pop & Hiss about the upcoming release of "It Might Get Loud" on iTunes. The resulting piece says:
"Guggenheim spoke fondly of mom-and-pop record stores, but added, 'there's no music store that can have everything that iTunes has.' ... 'To me, iTunes is my own mom-and-pop,' Guggenheim said. 'That sounds counter-intuitive, but it actually is.'"

Addressing the quality of a downloaded movie, Guggenheim posits in the Billboard.biz Q&A:
"I used to assume the quality was terrible. And for a while it was. But I downloaded 'The Sting' the other night and I couldn't tell the difference between that and a DVD. I think the quality issue is gone."

As for the convenience of a downloaded movie, the director tells Billboard.biz:
"It's perfect. If you're just a guy out there that loves movies, rock and roll music, and rock documentaries, you've seen all the music and movie venues disappear. The local music store, the local art house theater ... they're gone. That's the bad news. The good news is now there's a home for documentaries and music movies, and you don't even have to leave your home."

Yet the loss of the local music store is exactly what some people are mourning.

Led Zeppelin author Dave Lewis said this April he was reading "Last Shop Standing: Whatever Happened to Record Shops? A Journey Through an Industry In Turmoil" by Graham Jones. Within months, his hometown newspaper published a letter to the editor by Lewis, reading, in part:
"It's all too easy now to order CDs from the likes of Amazon and download songs from iTunes. This is all well and good but the download generation, which includes my own children, will never experience the excited buzz of a Saturday morning trawling the record shops in search of the latest singles and albums.

"The whole interaction of the buying and selling of records created a social network long before the emergence of the internet generated My Space and Facebook sites and one whereby we actually talked to each other face to face as we shared our passion for our favourite artists.

"I am sure I am not the only one whose record collection inspires fond memories of many hours spent in the likes of Carousel, Harlequin Records, Carlow's, Andy's, MVC, Our Price etc."

1 comment:

Comments are moderated prior to publication. Comments will not be published if they are deemed vulgar, defamatory or otherwise objectionable.