ElfQuest Fan Trailer Premieres, With Help From SAG

With over $7,000 raised through crowd-sourcing and three days of shooting in the coastal mountains near Malibu, two women were able to do in seven months what Warner Bros hasn’t for almost a decade: Make an ElfQuest movie. Well, okay, not a movie, exactly — a trailer.

SAG Overwhelmingly Approves Contract

Our long, national nightmare is over — the actors have a contract! Was that too dramatic? Well, melodrama is fitting given how long it’s taken the Screen Actors Guild and the Hollywood studios to come to terms and sign a deal. Last night, SAG voted overwhelmingly to accept the most recent contract offered by the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, ending the almost year-long back-and-forth between the two.

Roughly 35 percent of the union’s 110,000 members cast ballots, with 78 percent voting yes. The new deal gives actors a 3 percent wage increase, with another 3.5 percent bump in a year. The new contract also covers material created for new media, which was a sticking point that helped kick off this whole drawn-out negotiation in the first place, and includes residuals for ad-supported movies and TV shows streamed online.

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Vid-Biz: SAG, SafeTube, Kindle

SAG Contract Fight Heads to YouTube; Tom Hanks and other celebs urge actors to vote yes on the contract offered by the AMPTP. (The Wrap)

YouTube Looks to Create SafeTube; standalone site would be family-friendly version of the video site. (Guardian)

Showtime Uses the Kindle to Market New Show; pay network offering a free, downloadable version of the pilot script for Nurse Jackie. (Ad Age)

Russian Authorities Bust BitTorrent Tracker; the country had been considered a safe haven for such sites; this is believed to be the first such raid against a BitTorrent tracker (though the site still operates out of the Netherlands). (TorrentFreak)

Bing Thumbnails Let You Watch Entire Video with Sound; Beet.tv wonders if Microsoft’s new search site pushes fair use too far. (Beet.tv)

Asia-Pacific Region to Lead Telco TV Subscription Charge; ABI Research predicts that APAC will deliver 37 percent compound annual growth rate over the next three years. (release)

Justin.tv Streams E3; gaming conference goes live on Justin.tv and G4tv.com this week. (stream)

SAG Board Approves New Contract (with New Media Details)

The board of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) narrowly approved a tentative new deal with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) today. The proposed contract now heads to the general membership for ratification. For all you NewTeeVee-readin’ folk, there are new provisions governing new media, which was a sticking point in the negotiations, which have dragged on for nearly 10 months. From a SAG statement, the proposed deal includes:

  • Jurisdiction on all derivative, made-for new media productions; automatic jurisdiction on all high-budget, original, made-for new media productions; plus jurisdiction on low budget original, new media productions that employee at least 1 covered performer.
  • Residuals for exhibition of TV and Theatrical motion pictures on consumer pay platforms (Electronic Sell Through) at a greater percentage than those paid for DVD distribution.
  • Residuals for ad-supported streaming of feature films and television programs.
  • Residuals for derivative new media programs.

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Vid-Biz: YouTube, MOVR, MLB

Report: YouTube in Talks to Get Sony Movies; details are slim, but deal would make sense as YouTube tries to position itself as a premium content destination. (CNET)
Motorola MOVR Makes Your DVR Content Mobile; device connects to your set-top box and makes your recorded content available on any wireless, Internet-connected device. (Media Experiences 2 Go)

Live Video Streaming Coming to MLB’s “At Bat” iPhone App? New way to watch the game could arrive courtesy of a new streaming tool Apple is putting into the next version of the iPhone software. (Silicon Alley Insider)
Kevin Pollak Doing His Own Video Show; new episodes roll out every Sunday afternoon, features whatever the comedian/actor wants, including interviews with celebrities and live questions via Twitter. (TechCrunch)
TurnHere Founder Dives into “Vooks;” Brad Inman’s take on fiction is to include the written word, video and elements such as Twitter into one multimedia package. (The New York Times)
Actors, Studios Reportedly Close to a Deal; after nine months, the two parties could be close to agreement on a three-year deal. (LA Times)
Rumor: iPhone to Get Video Editing Tools; clues from graphic elements indicate v. 3.0 of the gadget’s software could include the ability to trim and clip video creations on the fly. (TUAW)

Vid-Biz: Cord-Cutting, IAB, Kyte

Report: Video Cord-Cutting a Myth; Sanford Bernstein analyst Craig Moffett says television subscriber additions grew by 441,000 in the fourth quarter of 2008. (Telephony) Bernstein’s research follows LRG’s data showing online video is not impacting TV subscriptions.

IAB Working to Develop Best Practices for Ads in TV Shows Online; issues to be discussed are the number and placement of ads in TV long-form programming. (TVWeek)

Kyte Launches iPhone Apps Framework; allows Kyte partners to create an app that includes video, live chat and monetization. (TechCrunch)

Oscar Video on Oscar.com Only; ABC keeps clips off YouTube. (MediaMemo) (And this isn’t the first time, either.)

History Channel Launches First Web Series; Great and Telling Tales with Timothy Dickinson offers up interesting nuggets from the past (like the extraordinary death of Rasputin). (The History Channel)

SAG Rejects AMPTP Offer; 73 percent of SAG’s board voted against the proposed contract. (The New York Times)

Vizio Takes No. 2 Spot in Fourth Quarter Flat-Screen Sales; company’s value-oriented sets catching on with cost-conscious consumers. (The LA Times)