3D movies will be tough to pirate

As Hollywood continues to battle pirates who reportedly hurt the movie industry, 3D movies could give the industry a lifeline due to the difficulties involved in ripping off 3D content.

“There is going to be a good period where 3D has got a little more value, because it can’t be purloined from the theater,” said Michael Peyser, USC production professor and producer of U2 3D, in an interview with TechNewsDaily.  “There’s no commodity to it, nor can the files, even if they’re copied, be viewed.”

Despite the success of Avatar and other 3D blockbuster movies, Hollywood says that the economy and technology changes have led to a decrease in box office numbers.  Sony Pictures Entertainment, one of the largest movie studios in the world, said it will lay off 450 workers this coming March.

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And while some movies have helped increase interest in 3D at theaters, many consumers are still unsure if they want the technology at home.

“Our industry is affected by two things:  It’s affected by the economy, of course, and it’s affected by technology,” said Amy Pascal, Sony co-chairman, speaking in a video to employees.  “Over the last two years, it’s changed people’s DVD-buying habits, which has had a huge effect on our company and the industry at large.”

With the economic downturn, consumers might be more willing to stay home rather than go to theaters, although one report we covered indicates that theater attendance was actually up 10% in 2009. On the home front, consumers are now choosing to rent or view a film online instead of purchasing DVD’s or Blu-ray Discs.

Panasonic, Sony and a number of tech companies are interested in releasing 3DTV sets in 2010, but it will still be some time before there is widespread adoption among consumers.  Once consumers have become familiarized with the technology, it’s more likely 3D content piracy will increase — but that might not happen until 3D no longer requires custom glasses.

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