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'Marley' documentary to stream on Facebook while in theaters

Poster for the documentary, "Marley."

David Brancaccio: There's a new documentary on the way about music legend and cultural icon Bob Marley. And at the same time the film hits theaters it will be available for rental via Facebook, with Facebook profits going to charity.

Dan Rayburn is an analyst at StreamingMedia.com. Hello, Dan.

Dan Rayburn: Hi, how are you? Thanks for having me today.

Brancaccio: Sure. So let me get this straight, there's a documentary coming out that you can pay a ticket and go to the theater, but at the same time you just check it out on Facebook?

Rayburn: Yeah, that's what seems to be going on these days. This isn't the first time that this has happened. But typically it's for content like this that's a bit more niche, doesn't draw as large of an audience. Major studios, obviously, aren't going to take away from their ticket sales by putting something online at the same time. They have a whole release window basically set up of when things come to VOD and Pay-Per-View, you can rent and you can buy it. But for an instance like this where it's a documentary or it's an independent film, using social networking sites like YouTube or Facebook is a great way to get an audience

Brancaccio: And it helps what, the people watching it and liking it to share that idea? In other words, to pass it along to the next person so that they can also see it?

Rayburn: That's part of it, the social networking aspect. The other part is the fact that there's more people with the ability to see it on Facebook than there is to walk into the theater and purchase a ticket. So you have a larger opportunity online. It's also instant. But some people might think that's the future of the movie industry. It really isn't because it's a different experience online versus in person and most major motion pictures and never streamed the same time that they come out in the theater because they would just take away revenue from ticket sales.

Brancaccio: I know and you just go to the supermarket to get your popcorn and then the movie theater wouldn't benefit.

Rayburn: Unless you got to Redbox, in which case you're at the supermarket already and you can get the DVD or Blu-ray for under $2. So that's something that's disrupting the market as well.

Brancaccio: All righty, Dan Rayburn, StreamingMedia.com, thank you very much.

Rayburn: Not a problem. Thank you.

About the author

David Brancaccio is the host of Marketplace Morning Report. Follow David on Twitter @DavidBrancaccio

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