In the frenzied run up to this year’s awards season, movie studios sent DVD screeners of their best films to Academy, guild and BAFTA members, critics and others around the globe in hopes of securing a nomination or even an Oscar. To ensure that they were only accessible to the intended parties and not subject to illegal use, more than a half million of those discs were protected by Fortium’s Patronus anti-rip content security.
Patronus has become Hollywood’s go-to solution for protecting DVD screeners. As many films contending for major movie awards haven’t been widely released in theatres, it’s imperative to protect screeners from piracy. Patronus prevents unauthorized copying and guards against scores of so-called ripping programs. This season, Patronus was applied to 50 individual award-hopeful titles and, according to newswire reports, once again, no leaked screeners appeared online during the festive period.
“I’m pleased Patronus has played its part in helping to reduce online leaks,” said Fortium CEO Mathew Gilliat-Smith. “We work hard to keep protection levels as high as possible for the screener season which customers can view on the fortiumtech.com website. There’s a common misperception that DVD screeners always leak but protected discs rarely do as they are not easily susceptible to copying.”
Academy members are fiercely protective over their DVD screeners because they are much easier to watch, and seem to be preferred over online screening alternatives. Physical screeners can be helpful in wooing voters and look good on the shelf. “It seems it will be a while before disc screeners are consigned to history,” Gilliat-Smith observed.
“Fortium consistently updates its DVD and Blu-ray protection technology to stay one step ahead and already the next upgrade is ready for release and will be exhibited on the Fortium stand at NAB,” he added. “Studios appear to find it more productive focusing on the prevention of leaks in the first place rather than on the cost of forensic watermarking and having to play detective after the event.”
In addition to screeners, Patronus is used to protect street discs and high-value special interest content. It helps content owners protect revenues by selling more discs though less free copying. Along with movie studios, the software is used by home entertainment producers; fitness, sports, training companies, and event videographers, as well as for memory videos.