LOS GATOS, Calif. -- With its members now watching more content streamed over the Internet than on discs delivered by mail, Netflix, Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) today introduced a $7.99 streaming-only subscription plan in the United States, the first time it is promoting a 100 percent streaming option in the U.S. The plan, which allows members to instantly watch unlimited movies and TV episodes streamed from Netflix to TVs and computers, is available now to both new and existing members.

"We are now primarily a streaming video company delivering a wide selection of TV shows and films over the Internet," said Reed Hastings, Netflix co-founder and CEO. "Today's action reflects the tremendous customer value we've injected into streaming from Netflix, our initial success with a pure streaming service in Canada for $7.99 a month and what our U.S. members tell us they want."

The company also announced that the price of its popular subscription combining unlimited movies and TV shows streamed instantly over the Internet and unlimited DVDs delivered quickly by mail, with one DVD out at a time, will increase by a dollar a month to $9.99. Prices of subscription plans allowing for more DVDs out at a time will also increase and are detailed at http://blog.netflix.com. Price changes take effect now for new sign-ups and in January for existing members.

Instantly watching movies and TV shows streamed over the Internet has become the preferred way members enjoy the Netflix service. The company recently announced that in the current quarter, which ends December 31, its members will watch more content streamed over the Internet than on DVDs and that in the same period Netflix will invest more money to license streaming content than to acquire DVDs.

Netflix members in the U.S. now have access to an ever expanding library of movies and TV episodes that can be watched instantly, and there are more than 200 consumer electronics devices - including the three major game consoles and scores of Blu-ray disc players, Internet-connected TVs and digital video players - capable of streaming from Netflix right to members' TVs.

Over time, Netflix has added significantly to the streaming content available to its members. This year alone, licensing deals with NBC Universal, Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox, EPIXTM, Relativity Media and Nu Image/Millennium Films have added a wealth of first-run theatrical films, hit TV series and movie classics to the Netflix streaming offering and have helped make streaming the most popular way to enjoy a Netflix membership.

In late September, the company introduced its service in Canada, the first availability of Netflix outside the U.S. Canadian members can instantly watch unlimited movies and TV shows streamed from Netflix for C$7.99 a month. The company recently said its Canadian service has surpassed initial expectations and encouraged it to accelerate plans for further international expansion in 2011.

 

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danieldaylewisnews.pngLos Angeles, CA -- Two-time Academy Award winner Daniel Day-Lewis will star as the 16th President of the United States in DreamWorks Studios' Lincoln to be directed by Steven Spielberg. The announcement was made today by Spielberg and Stacey Snider, Co-Chairman and CEO of DreamWorks Studios.

"Daniel Day-Lewis would have always been counted as one of the greatest of actors, were he from the silent era, the golden age of film or even some time in cinema's distant future. I am grateful and inspired that our paths will finally cross with Lincoln," said Steven Spielberg. "Throughout his career, he has been exceptionally selective in his choice of material," added Stacey Snider, "which makes us feel even more fortunate that he has chosen to join with us for Lincoln."

Based on the best-selling book, Team of Rivals, by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, the screenplay has been written by the Pulitzer Prize winner, Tony Award winner, and Academy Award nominated writer Tony Kushner. It will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy and Steven Spielberg.

It is anticipated that the film will focus on the political collision of Lincoln and the powerful men of his cabinet on the road to abolition and the end of the Civil War.

Doris Kearns Goodwin won her Pulitzer Prize for No Ordinary Time, the story of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and the home front in World War II. Kushner's prize was for his play Angels in America, which later became an Emmy Award-winning television special. He had previously worked with Spielberg on Munich for which he was nominated for an Oscar in the Adapted Screenplay category.

Filming is expected to begin in the fall of 2011 for release in the fourth quarter of 2012 through Disney's Touchstone distribution label.

 

 

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inceptionnews2.pngLos Angeles, CA -- (November 18, 2010) - Leonardo DiCaprio will star in a feature film based on the non-fiction JFK assassination book "Legacy of Secrecy," written by Lamar Waldron and Thom Hartmann. DiCaprio will also be producing on behalf of his production house, Appian Way. Warner Brothers, who is responsible for the success of the celebrated film "JFK," plans to release the DiCaprio film in time for the 50th anniversary of JFK's assassination in 2013.

DiCaprio will play FBI informant Jack Van Laningham, who obtained the confession of Mafia godfather Carlos Marcello to having ordered JFK's assassination.

As part of a dangerous and long-secret undercover operation, the FBI positioned Van Laningham to become the confidant of Marcello, who ruled organized crime in Louisiana and most of Texas for decades.

The FBI's clandestine operation with Van Laningham and the full story behind Marcello's JFK confession remained secret for decades, until Waldron and Hartmann published the declassified FBI files from the National Archives in 2009's "Legacy of Secrecy."

Carlos Marcello, who died in 1993, has not yet been the subject of a feature film, though he has long been of interest to authorities investigating JFK's murder. In 1979, a Congressional Committee concluded that "Marcello had the motive, means, and opportunity to assassinate President Kennedy." Even though FBI and Secret Service files cited in "Legacy of Secrecy" show that more than a dozen of Marcello's men and family members were questioned or arrested by authorities for JFK's murder, Marcello's name did not appear in the 1964 Warren Report, which consisted of an 888-page investigation into the assassination presented to President Johnson.

Producing with DiCaprio will be his father, George DiCaprio, who brought the book to his son's attention. An acclaimed director who has previously worked with Leonardo has expressed interest in directing the film.

Van Laningham and Waldron are represented by attorney Phillip Rosen. Because the 900+ page "Legacy of Secrecy" contains so much new information from the National Archives that can't fit in the film - including the Mafia's role in the assassination of Martin Luther King and in Watergate - Warner Brothers has permitted Waldron to keep documentary film and TV rights. Earl Katz, an Executive Producer of the "Legacy" film for Appian Way and Warner, will produce one or more of those documentaries.

 

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November 19 Update: Warner Bros. is reporting that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I made $24 million from midnight and early morning shows at 3,700 locations.

While that's far from Eclipse's record of just over $30 million, it does top the $22.2 million midnight haul of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Deathly Hallows: Part I did set a new midnight record for an IMAX release with $1.4 million, topping the $1 million haul of Eclipse.

November 18 Update #2
: Fandango.com is reporting that Deathy Hallows: Part I now ranks #3 on their all-time advance seller list. It is also is the strongest advance seller of the Potter franchise.

The site is also reporting more than 3,000 sold-out shows.

November 18 Update:
Fandango.com is reporting more than 2,500 sold-out shows, while MovieTickets.com has more than 2,200. Deathly Hallows: Part I shot past Half-Blood Prince on MovieTickets to take over the #4 spot on the site's all-time advanced sellers list. The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, New Moon and Star Wars: Episode 3 - Revenge of the Sith occupy the top three spots.

November 17 Update #2:
Deadline.com is reporting that HP7: Part I will play at a record-breaking 3,700 locations at midnight, 239 IMAX locations (another record) and it has already generated $25 million in advanced ticket sales.

Fandango.com has tallied more than 2,200 sold-out shows.

November 17 Update:
MovieTickets.com is reporting that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I currently ranks in fifth place on their all-time advance ticket seller list. It's not far behind Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince at #4. The ticketing site is also reporting more than 1,900 sold-out shows, 160 of which are in New York and Los Angeles.

November 16 Update:
Fandango.com is now reporting more than 2,000 sold-out shows. More stats from a poll of Fandango users:

• 84% plan to watch previous Harry Potter movies this week to prepare for Deathy Hallows: Part I
• 82% have read all of the Potter books
• 81% have seen all the Potter movies on the big screen;
• 45% are pleased that filmmakers delayed a 3D version of Part I until they could get it right (while 51% claim the 3D process wouldn't have affected their interest either way).


November 15 Update:
MovieTickets.com is reporting that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I has sold out more than 1,000 shows.

November 10 Update:
As of 9 a.m. PT, Fandango.com is reporting 900 sold-out shows and MovieTickets.com boasts 800 for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I.

November 3 Update: Fandango.com is reporting that as of 5 a.m. PT, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I is responsible for nearly 500 sold-out shows. MovieTickets.com is reporting more than 300. That's very impressive considering that the film doesn't open until November 19.

"Even though the finale's first part is more than two weeks away, fans are already showing their eagerness to join the final journey on opening weekend," says Fandango Chief Operating Officer Rick Butler. "We've seen more sold-out showtimes for this film than we've seen for any other film this year, at the same point in the sales cycle."

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