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Taylor Lautner's 'Abduction' First Home Entertainment Release to Hit Facebook Day-and-Date

Taylor Lautner

The film from Lionsgate will be available for $3.99 for a 48-hour rental on the social networking site.

NEW YORK - In a milestone for Hollywood studios' relationship with Facebook, Lionsgate's Tuesday home entertainment release of Abduction is the industry's first-ever release that will be available on the social network day-and-date with the DVD release.

Abduction will be available for $3.99 for a 48-hour Facebook rental. Lionsgate will also offer access to an exclusive interview with the film's star Taylor Lautner, the Financial Times reported in highlighting the industry first.

People who watch the film on Facebook will have the option to write notes about scenes and post them on the social network while they watch the film. Friends watching the movie later will see those comments in the bottom half of the screen.
It said the decision to use Facebook as a distribution platform at the same time as DVDs shows Lionsgate's confidence that the network can help generate online video rentals in the important early weeks of a home entertainment release, as well as help gather personal information about film fans that can be used for future marketing activities.

“Basically, we’ll get [viewers’] emails,” Anne Parducci, executive vp of marketing at Lionsgate, told the FT. “We already know who our fans of the [Facebook] page are, but we don’t have a direct to consumer relationship with them.”

About 14 studios have experimented with offering previously released movies for rental on Facebook since Time Warner's Warner Bros. unit made The Dark Knight available on the network last March, according to the paper.

Movie studios see a 20-30 per cent spike in their Facebook fans after each movie is released on the platform, said Dean Alms, vp of marketing at Milyoni, a company that makes social entertainment software for studios.

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com

Twitter: @georgszalai