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Japan's Gaga launches VOD service

Titles on offer in Japan include The King’s Speech.

 Film distributor Gaga Corporation announced the launch of a new VOD portal today.

Dubbed Gaga Theater the website began services on Aug 8, offering Japan-based viewers Gaga library titles including The King’s Speech, Slumdog Millionaire, The Girl With the Dragon Tatoo series and The Phantom of the Opera.

The site currently offers 41 titles with plans to expand. Viewers can watch streamed selections freely between Windows/Mac, tablet or smart phone platforms. Films generally cost $4.00 (Y315) for members and can be viewed for 72 hours.

The Mac desktop platform is often excluded in the territory due to contents providers unwilling to pay separate DRM costs. Japan’s oldest internet-based VOD service Showtime (launched in 2001) was just recently made available to Mac users. TVs with internet connectivity have access to larger services such as Tsutaya TV, which will offer PC-access this winter.

Aside from monetizing its extensive library Gaga also stated its desire to offer art-house hits often not screened theatrically in regional areas of Japan.

In combination with Facebook and Twitter, the site will also be used to market Gaga’s upcoming theatrical releases including The Intouchables (September) and The Grandmasters (2013).

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