Four days of celebrating for the first Fête de la VàD
by Fabien Lemercier
- The Union of Video on Demand Publishers and the CNC have put together a large-scale promotional operation - €2 per film from 6 to 9 October across 13 platforms
Video on Demand (VoD) in France is currently in the midst of a paradoxical situation. There is an abundance of diverse content available (close to 40 platforms hosting 70,000 titles, approximately 15,000 of which were films that have been made available just four months after their theatrical release), and the medium boasts the incredibly high awareness rate of 92.7% of the population. However, only 34% of French people claimed to have paid for VoD access in 2015, a lower percentage than expected, and much less than those observed in English-speaking markets.
Going beyond the explanation of piracy (tirelessly quoted by various professionals in the French film industry) that the French public powers have chosen (unlike those in Germany, for example) not to fight with coercive means, but rather to suppress it, promoting legal access means and draining the advertising resources of sites operating illegally, the question of a market push towards VoD is raised. It is a means that has yet to reach its full potential, especially when studies have shown that a person’s first VoD rental often leads to regular practice.
This is the reason why the Union of Video-on-Demand Publishers (SEVAD) and the CNC have decided to initiate the VoD Party, the first edition of which will take place from Thursday 6 to Sunday 9 October 2016. The concept is quite simple: 13 VoD platforms (Arte VOD, CANALPLAY VOD, FilmoTV, FnacPLAY, FranceTVPluzzVàD, MYTF1VOD, Imineo, Nolim, Orange, SFR Club Vidéo, UniversCiné, Videofutur and VODEO.TV) will offer a single rate of €2 per film during this period.
For French cinema, the stakes are high, given an environment in which the funding model for cinematic works is strongly linked to the healthy operation of TV broadcasters (in particular Canal+), which must fight to stay relevant in the current transition towards a multi-screen world that favours exclusivity and instantaneity. A transfer of the resources that have been created by VoD would not be superfluous, far from it, at least at the beginning, to compensate for the rapid decline of DVD. It must also be said that, in the first half of 2016, film represented close to 77% of VoD transactions in France, and that French films combined for close to a third of VoD profits in 2015.
(Translated from French)