By Keri Algar
SYDNEY, NSW: Sony’s traditional gaming device, the PlayStation 3, has today opened itself up to a world of art house films that can be streamed from a web-based service called Mubi, giving consumers a very different reason to purchase a PS3.
Comedian Tom Gleeson hosted the unveiling last night, which he described as “flogging some software for Sony”, from the Chauvel Cinema in Sydney to a crowd where cinephiles by far outnumbered gamers. Gleeson was joined by actress Miranda Otto (Eowyn in The Lord of the Rings) and director Abe Forsythe (Shock, Being Carl Williams).
There are over 1 million PS3 users in Australia already, 63 per cent of which are connected to the PS network, according to Sony Entertainment MD Michael Ephraim. The speculated clash of culture between art house film fans and gamers was batted aside by Ephraim who said broadening the potential audience can only be a good thing for Sony.
“We are excited to be partnering with such a unique and innovative film service, that will inspire our current fans and also bring a new community of film enthusiasts to the world of PlayStation,” said Ephraim.
“Mubi is a fantastic addition to the PS3 on demand entertainment experience that stretches beyond great games and adds an exciting new layer to PlayStation Network’s film offering."
Efe Cakarel, the charismatic creator of Mubi said the service would offer people the chance to watch films they could not otherwise find.
“Bringing Mubi to PlayStation opens up the world of independent, foreign and classic films. It is about making great films fun and accessible, tearing away the mystique and letting members go on the most unexpected journeys,” said Cakarel in an exotic accent to match his name.
As well as a shot in the arm for the independent film industry, Mubi will widen the potential PS3 audience for Sony. As Cakarel said, “People will always pay for convenience and access.”
Downloading the Mubi app is free. Short films can be purchased for 7 days for RRP $1.75, feature length films can be purchased for 7 days for RRP $6.25 or an unlimited 30-day subscription can be purchased for RRP $19.95.
Mubi launched today in over 18 countries and is available to the 38 million PS3 units that have been sold globally.