Home, a documentary about the environment, will make both its big and small screen debut simultaneously. Users will be able to watch the movie on YouTube, but at the same time, it will also be available on DVD, in cinemas (at least in France), and it will be shown as a primetime broadcast on France 2. The film was directed by Yann Arthus-Bertrand and produced by Luc Besson, who also produced The Fifth Element and other popular movies. This marks the first time that a full-length movie makes its debut both on YouTube and in theaters, and is a good example of YouTube's efforts to attract more advertisers by featuring more professionally produced content.Tomorrow,
According to Google, YouTube's partners currently feature over 90,000 full-length films on the service, though most of them tend to be older and, in many cases, rather obscure.
A report on Bloomberg.com about the release of this movie highlights some of the frustrations with the current advertising situation among YouTube's executives. In an interview with the news service, YouTube's Anthony Zameczkowski argues that YouTube is a place where filmmakers can reach 350 million unique users a month, and that YouTube is "more than just dogs on skateboards." According to Bloomberg, YouTube's Zameczkowski also tried to encourage more studios and filmmakers to upload their films to the service at last month's Cannes Film Festival.
Interestingly, though, even some of the most popular movies on YouTube hardly ever have over 500,000 views, and some of the most popular films there look more like traditional YouTube videos than slick movie studio productions.
YouTube Still Tries to Make a Profit
As we have argued many times before, YouTube still has to find a better revenue model in order to become profitable. Short clips and home movies are not too popular with advertisers, even though most of us clearly love them. Brands, however, would probably be more than happy to support projects like this and other feature-length movies and TV shows, as the financial and popular success of sites like Hulu clearly shows. Currently, according to Bloomberg, YouTube only earns money from about 3% of all the videos it hosts.
Thanks to Barb Dybwad at Obsessable for alerting us to this story.