Two majors sign with Dendy Direct

30 July, 2014 by Don Groves

The Walt Disney Co. and 20th Century Fox have licensed their product to Dendy Direct, the Video-on-Demand service which debuts on August 6.

Neither deal has been announced but titles from both studios were featured in an industry launch at the Dendy Cinema Newtown on Wednesday night.


The Disney line-up includes Muppets Most Wanted (available from August 13) and Captain America: Winter Soldier (August 20).

The service will offer 800-1,000 films to rent or buy online and TV series including The Time of Our Lives, Peaky Blinders and From Dusk Till Dawn.

The pricing will be similar to other VOD platforms, typically $5.99 to rent a movie, $24.99 to purchase in SD and $29.99 in HD.

Last week the company announced licensing deals with ABC Commercial, Beyond Home Entertainment, Entertainment One Australia, Madman Entertainment, Pinnacle Films, Roadshow, Transmission and Umbrella Entertainment.

Dendy/Icon CEO Greg Hughes told several hundred people at the launch party the idea for the service was hatched two years ago over a cup of tea at the home of chairman Bruce Davey.

He hailed Dendy Direct as the first on-demand service from an exhibition company in the Southern Hemisphere, perhaps a veiled reference to Hoyts, which shelved plans to launch Hoyts Stream.

Hughes told IF, "We are clearly aiming to use our prestigious brand, our community of cinema patrons, sophisticated curation and the convenience of the platform/interface to differentiate from other more ‘mass market’ services like iTunes, Google and Foxtel and target a more discerning/discriminating segment of the market."

Dendy head of digital Kate Stapleton referred to Dendy’s 60-year history from its origins in Brighton and said “it is a natural step to extend Dendy’s content to people’s homes.”

She announced initiatives including movies to rent for 99 cents, a guest curator who will pick 15 films he or she loves each month, and “rooms” where customers can discover new content and old gems.