|Amazon.com Launches Amazon Theater -- a Free Holiday Gift for Customers|
-- Customers can enjoy a series of world-class short films from Hollywood icons Tony and Ridley Scott with star-studded cast members Minnie Driver, Daryl Hannah, Chris Noth and Blair Underwood exclusively on Amazon.com.
To kick off the holiday season, Amazon.com (Nasdaq:AMZN) today debuted its short film series -- Amazon Theater. Teaming with Ridley and Tony Scott's production company, RSA USA, and creative agency Fallon Worldwide, Amazon.com has created a series of five short films that will be available exclusively on Amazon.com, as a free holiday gift to its customers. Leveraging Amazon.com's technology platform, Amazon Theater enables customers to enjoy world-class short films free-of-charge, visit special artist boutiques to learn more about their favorite actors, and purchase products that they've seen in the films -- all in a uniquely Amazon.com environment.
Today, and for the following four Tuesdays, Amazon.com will announce a new film in the Amazon Theater series, which will be viewable directly from the Amazon.com homepage. Customers can view the films without leaving the Amazon.com gateway page, or they can download high-quality versions of the films. The first film is entitled, "Portrait," and stars Minnie Driver. Directed by Jordan Scott, "Portrait" is a modern Hollywood fable in which magical portraits reveal the inner beauty of their subjects. The release schedule for films two through five is as follows:
Nov. 16: "Agent Orange" A psychedelic love story directed by Tony Scott. Nov. 23: "Do Geese See God" Blair Underwood plays a modern man obsessed with finding inner salvation. Nov. 30: "Tooth Fairy" Chris Noth as a beleaguered father on a good-humored odyssey. Dec. 7: "Careful What You Wish For" A classic tale of what goes around comes around with Daryl Hannah and Pras Michel.
"We are thrilled to partner with tremendously talented directors, producers, and actors to create and debut Amazon Theater, and offer it as a free holiday gift," said Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com. "It's a great example of Amazon's relentless commitment to finding new and innovative ways to surprise and delight customers and deliver an unparalleled online experience."
"Amazon Theater films are different, quirky, odd, funny, sweet, touching, affecting little stories that capture moments in time with different people," said Tony Scott, director of Amazon Theater film "Agent Orange." "I think it's very brave and daring and innovative for Amazon.com to be doing this -- to be bringing short films to millions of people in this unique way."
As the credits roll after each film, customers can click on the names of the actors and directors to visit special artist boutiques where the celebrities offer gift ideas and support various charitable causes. Using Amazon.com technology, customers will be able to donate to select celebrity charities, as well as purchase other movies, books, and CD products by the actors, directors and producers of the films. Other "stars" of the films include a wide range of products available on Amazon.com, which are also highlighted in the credits. Customers can click on product credits to purchase the exact apparel, home furnishings, cosmetics, kitchen appliances, electronics, and jewelry as used in the films.
Actress and musician Minnie Driver, who stars in Amazon Theater's debut film, "Portrait," offers her thoughts on the project, "To be at the forefront of Amazon's innovative program is something that I care passionately about. And for there to be a whole new generation of people being exposed in a whole new way to short films is so exciting -- they may go out and make their own short films and see how they can put them on their own Web sites... The possibilities are endless and limitless. That's maybe the greatest inspirational gift of a place like Amazon.com -- anything is possible."
Indeed, Amazon.com is inviting short-film makers to sign up to receive information about any future Amazon Theater projects. Directly below the Amazon Theater player, film-makers can provide their e-mail address and receive updates on future Amazon Theater short-film initiatives.
While the films are not specifically holiday themed, there is a common thread among them -- karma. All five films have an element of karmic balance -- what goes around comes around, and those who do the right thing for the long term are rewarded. This concept provided a creative foundation on which the films were developed, but the resulting execution of each couldn't be more diverse. Each film is completely different in style and genre, ranging from action, to comedy, to family drama.
"The quantity of people you can reach on Amazon is really amazing -- we're talking about millions of customers," said actor Blair Underwood. "Imagine getting that number of people watching a television show, or in a movie theater? Amazon Theater is an innovative new way to reach the consumer and to entertain."
Tonight, Amazon.com will celebrate the launch of Amazon Theater with an exclusive red-carpet event in Los Angeles hosted by Amazon.com, Tony and Ridley Scott, and Jules Daly. Attendees of the event will see a sneak preview of the second film in the series, "Agent Orange," directed by Tony Scott, which will premiere on the site on November 16.
Chase (NYSE:JPM) is the official sponsor of Amazon Theater and is featured in selected areas throughout the Amazon Theater customer experience. Additionally, customers are encouraged to use the Amazon Platinum Visa card, issued by Chase, to purchase products they see in the films. Amazon Platinum Visa cardmembers receive reward points and exclusive content from the films when they use their card. "Chase is pleased to work with Amazon.com on this innovative project for the holidays," said Hugh Bleemer, executive vice president, Chase Card Services. "The films are excellent, and we're happy to offer an added value to our cardmembers with reward points and exclusive content from the films."
Amazon Theater is available on Amazon.com's homepage, which is located at www.amazon.com. To apply for the Amazon Platinum Visa or for more information about the card, please visit www.amazon.com/visa.
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