Four of the nation's top cable operators are collaborating on way for cable customers to access on-demand content and support the ongoing relief efforts in Haiti.
Beginning this weekend and available until March 14, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Bright House Networks, through their respective video-on-demand platforms, are giving subscribers a chance to access the long-form version of "We Are The World 25 For Haiti" for $2.99, with 100% of the proceeds earmarked for the We Are The World Foundation, the non-profit organization.
That group, formed by producer Quincy Jones and Lionel Richie, who both serve as executive producers and producers of the re-recording of the 1985 philanthropic anthem "We Are The World," which benefited African famine relief, is committed to long-term assistance to Haiti.
The long-form video version of the song, featuring over 80 of the world's top recording stars and directed by Academy-Award winner Paul Haggis, will be available starting this weekend in 33 million cable homes, following a preview of a shorter version during the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympic Games on Fri, Feb. 12, broadcast by NBC.
Performers of all generations and backgrounds got together in Los Angeles on February 1st - nearly 25 years to the day from the first recording - to re-record the song that is still the best-selling single of all-time. This production was made possible through financial support from Visa Inc.
The video can be accessed via Comcast: VOD Top Picks; Time Warner Cable: Movies On Demand; Cox: Movies On Demand; and Bright House Networks: Movies On Demand.
The cable on demand project came together through the efforts of Jones and media entrepreneur Alexis Denny of Normandy International, who brought the idea to Comcast chairman and CEO Brian Roberts. The MSO executive then enlisted the nation's top VOD distributor, In Demand to coordinate the effort and bring in the company's other owners, Time Warner Cable, Bright House and Cox.
Commented Quincy Jones, "For Comcast to bring together the cable industry leaders in the same spirit of collaboration that the artists shared in the studio was very fitting, and I am enormously grateful to Brian Roberts and Comcast, as well as Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Bright House Networks for their inspired support of our efforts to bring much needed relief to the people of Haiti."
"The crisis in Haiti has stirred an outpouring of emotion and concern around the world," noted Roberts. "As technology continues to change our lives, we wanted to find a way to put the vast resources of our industry into the broad effort so many individuals and organizations were making."
Pat Esser, president, Cox Communications and Steve Miron, CEO of Bright House Networks, issued the following statement: "Through this unified effort, we and all of our customers have a way to make an immediate difference to the people of Haiti through this urgent philanthropic outreach. We are fortunate that we have the technology right now through On Demand for viewers to simply click on and enjoy the video, knowing that the entire purchase price will go to the We Are the World Foundation."
More information about the We Are The World 25 for Haiti multi-faceted fund-raising campaign can be found at www.world25.org.
The participating artists in the project:
EARTH WIND & FIRE
THE JONAS BROTHERS
T PAIN BRIAN WILSON
MARY MARY MELANIE FIONA
JOEL & BENJI MADDEN
LL COOL J
ISSAC SLADE (AKA THE FRAY)
JIMMY JEAN LOUIS
HARRY CONNICK, JR.
BONE THUGS AND HARMONY (BIZZY BONES)
MARY J BLIGE