Enjoying old movies just got easier for American Movie
Thanks to the network's latest brand-extension
products, which hit the market early this month, consumers don't need cable to
experience the classics. They don't even need a television or a computer, for that
matter: just an audiocassette player.
"American Movie Classics Audio Movies to Go"
allows AMC to extend its brand beyond the home and into the car, while drivers are
commuting to work or traveling on long trips.
"We look for ways to bring classic movies to life
wherever we can," AMC general manager and executive vice president Noreen
Hollywood director Cecil B. DeMille produced abridged
versions of movies made in the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s into one-hour adaptations of popular
films of the day for Lux Radio Theater. In most cases, the original stars reread their own
parts. When there were replacements, O'Loughlin said, they were always big-name
Those who remember the radio show are among the easiest to
sell the new audio line to, O'Loughlin said. But people in their 30s and 40s who
didn't know about the series will find it a good change of pace for entertainment in
their cars, she added.
AMC has already released its first 14 titles, and it plans
a total of 700 over the next two years or so. The network plans to release eight to 10
titles at a time, with launches timed to match genre-based theme promotions at AMC,
introducing horror-film adaptations to coincide with "Monsterfest" next fall,
In the next few weeks, the company plans a special holiday
release, with titles such as It's a Wonderful Life and Miracle on 34th
In addition to promoting the tapes on its Web site, in its
magazine and through on-air messages, AMC -- part of Cablevision Systems Corp.'s
Rainbow Media Holdings Inc. unit -- is distributing the line through Cablevision-owned
retail subsidiary The Wiz.
American Movie Classics Audio Movies to Go are also
available through national retailers, including Kmart Corp., Barnes & Noble and B.
AMC's first foray into brand extension was a book for
movie fans published earlier this year. The network also plans a record deal tied to its
brand, with announcements likely early next year, O'Loughlin said.
The network has also received exposure through
Cablevision's Clearview Cinemas movie theaters, although AMC is not currently
promoting movie screenings through the chain.
"We have two different [brand-extension] routes to
pursue: opportunities with the Cablevision family, and other opportunities that emerge
naturally from the network," O'Loughlin said.