Entertainment web-site Pop.com - fronted by Imagine Entertainment and DreamWorks - is shutting down following the collapse last week of merger discussions with LA-based film portal Ifilm.com (Screendaily, September 4).
The site, backed by $50m from Paul Allen's Vulcan Ventures, never went live despite being scheduled for a spring 2000 launch. The site's 70 plus employees will be laid off by the end of the week.
"Although the internet continues to represent an exciting, creative opportunity for us, the market has shifted dramatically since our original announcement resulting in this being a less viable business for us," said DreamWorks spokeswoman Vivian Mayer.
Pop.com is the second high-profile entertainment site to close shop this year following the failure of Digital Entertainment Network. However other web-sites, including iFilm and AtomFilms appear to be thriving. According to observers, Pop.com's problem was lack of a solid business plan and the fact that it didn't float before the internet finance bubble burst.
Pop.com head of content Jamie Tosi will remain with the site in a caretaker capacity until the operation is liquidated and issues concerning the content already procured are finalised.
See this week's Screen International (September 8) for full analysis.