From WSJ reporters around the world. Search Corporate Intelligence1 September 17, 2013, 1:18 PM 74 Million Movies that Werent Streamed in July Biography Redbox For those who spend their time glued to glowing screens on smartphones and laptops, its important to get an occasional reminder of how popular some offline businesses still are. And that is certainly the case when it comes to movie rentals. Plenty of people have long abandoned their Blockbuster membership and shifted from renting discs to streaming shows Netflix now has almost 30 million paying members but plenty havent. In households where the TV is still king (and not connected to a computer or the internet), DVD rental is still going strong. Take Redbox, which rents DVDs from its more than 43,000 vending machines located in grocery stores across the country. Stock in its parent company, Outerwall Inc., is down 12.5% today after it issued updated guidance last night, lowering estimates for revenues and earnings. A big reason for the downward revision was rentals at Redbox were not as high as expected. But even then, they were pretty high : Rentals for July and August grew year over year 13.4% and 15.7% respectively, with July representing Redboxs best rental month in its history, with approximately 74 million rentals. Redbox continues to expect both rentals and revenue per kiosk to increase compared to comparable periods in 2012. In addition, unique credit and debit cards used in July and August increased 11% year over year, while rental frequency improved in July and August compared to the same periods in 2012. 74 million rentals in July. Aside from working on an old-school TV setup, Redbox rentals can be a pretty cheap option compared to whats available online: $1.20 a night for one of their discs, compared to $2.99 upward for a streaming movie from places like Amazon or Apples iTunes store. Netflix subscriptions cost $8 per month, although that gets an all-you-can-eat streaming buffet.

SEE MORE: From the September 17, 2013 issue of Variety But those advantages are freighted with the expectations and pressures that come with such a large-scale endeavor. Besides, remarkably few directors of photography have successfully made a longterm transition to helming features. Among those, a mere handful George Stevens, Barry Sonnenfeld and Jan de Bont among them have enjoyed critical and commercial success. And only one, Nicolas Roeg, could be seen as a unique stylist whose creative stamp is unmistakable. Get Variety News and alerts free to your inbox Its kind of shocking that you dont see more (d.p.s make the transition) because a lot of times these guys are the most experienced on the set, says Phil dAmecourt, the William Morris Endeavor agent who reps Pfister as a director. David Walsh, who shot d.p. William Frakers first film as a director, Monte Walsh (1970), concurs. Usually youre the first in command because as soon as the director gets a rehearsal, he takes a hike to work with the actors to go over the script, he says. So youre really running the set. These observations are given added weight when considering how d.p.s have been the salvation of numerous novice filmmakers over the decades, from Gregg Tolands invaluable contributions on Orson Welles maiden film Citizen Kane, to Conrad Hall mentoring theater director Sam Mendes into an Academy A-lister with American Beauty. Even Francis Ford Coppola went from journeyman to Hollywood Brahmin with the help of Gordon Willis on The Godfather films. And yet writers, actors and even editors such as the late Robert Wise and Hal Ashby have graduated to the directors ranks with relative ease compared with most d.p.s. Scribes, of course, have the ability to generate content, while actors especially bankable ones can attract good material. If you dont start with that, then its really hard, says The Right Stuff d.p. Caleb Deschanel. If somebody has a great script, theyre not going to go to a cinematographer first.

Directing Movies: Few Know More Than the Cinematographer

Several major Oscar contenders — like the aforementioned Captain Phillips, the folk music film Inside Llewyn Davis and the acclaimed 12 Years A Slave — are all eagerly waited. Film buffs will also savor the art house hopefuls that may never gain a huge wide audience but hope to attain the even more enduring trait of greatness. Then there’s Blue Is The Warmest Color, the top prize winner at Cannes which may do a little bit of both. The festival is filled with some dauntingly long fare — a four hour miniseries about the Prague Spring, a four hour+ take on Crime and Punishment, a four hour look at Berkeley and how a university is run and a relatively brisk three hour and 38 minute film by Claude Lanzmann on two key figures in the Holocaust. I’m looking forward to them — I just wish they didn’t sometimes start the screenings at 9 am! If you read that list and get excited like I do, then NYFF is for you. Here are my impressions of the first two films I saw. LIKE FATHER LIKE SON *** out of **** Japanese director Hirokazu Koreeda has been a favorite of mine since I caught Nobody Knows at Cannes in 2004. (Hey, I spent a lot of money going to the Cannes Film Festival for more than a decade; I’m going to milk that for all its worth.) Other films like After Life, I Wish and Still Walking contribute to an impressive body of work. So does his new movie which is typically quiet, observant and filled with some excellent performances from child actors. The story is cliched, really. A wealthy couple with a six year old boy is seen going about their daily lives. The father Nonomiya (Masaharu Fukuyama) is a driven, very successful businessman who expects no less from his child.