Studios trim special features and add mandatory previews to DVDs - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Studios are trimming special features and adding mandatory previews to rental DVDs

(NBC) - You may have noticed some changes the last time you rented a movie. Some big movie studios are stripping away bonus features on rental DVDs.

It's an effort to compete with new places like RedBox and Netflix.

"We go to the movies with the kids and it's $50. And you go to RedBox and it's a $1," said movie fan Michelle Carlascia. "My kids wanted to watch the movie and we were trying to get through the menu and there was nothing."

They popped in the rental version of Disney's 'Up' and got a very different version that the one sold at stores.

First, you'll get a string of trailers. No matter how many times you push the menu button, no menu ever pops up.

"I'm sorta impatient so we'll click menu and go right to the menu if the disc lets you go there. There was no menu," said Keith Carlascia.

Movie studios have been battling some of the rental companies for months trying to get more revenue from those rental markets. One way they're thinking about doing that, is eliminating these menu screens from the rental DVD's, meaning the only way you'd see any of the special features or the menu items is if you bought the retail version at a store.

Even without the bonus features, sitting through previews, like the days of VHS, could prove to be more suspenseful than the actual movie.

"If I have to sit and watch the previews for a few minutes, ok. It's mostly depending on the kids and what their attention span is," Michelle Carlascia said.

In addition to Disney, 20th Century Fox is stripping all the bonus features like commentaries and deleted scenes. So it appears to be a trend spreading as quick as those big red machines.

Copyright 2010 NBC. All rights reserved.

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