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DVD News -
Image Entertainment

Here's the text of the Image press release:

Image Entertainment and Panasonic Interactive Media Agree to Enter Exclusive Distribution Agreement

New Pact Will Give Image Exclusive Worldwide DVD Distribution Rights To "The Twilight Zone" Series and Domestic DVD Distribution Rights To the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics


CHATSWORTH, Calif., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Image Entertainment, Inc. (Nasdaq: DISK), the largest independent licensee and distributor of optical video disc programming in North America, today announced that it has entered into a preliminary agreement with Panasonic Interactive Media, a division of Matsushita Electric Corp. of America, in which Image will have the exclusive rights to market and distribute Panasonic Interactive Media's first two DVD video programs. According to the agreement, Image will acquire exclusive worldwide distribution rights to THE TWILIGHT ZONE series and exclusive domestic distribution rights to the 1998 NAGANO WINTER OLYMPICS.

Commenting on the agreement, Martin W. Greenwald, president and CEO of Image Entertainment stated, "We are delighted with this new opportunity, which will further expand Image's role in the fast growing and exciting DVD video format. Image's commitment to expanding its presence in the DVD video industry will be enhanced by the acquisition of the worldwide distribution rights to the internationally popular Rod Serling series: THE TWILIGHT ZONE."

Lou Viveros, General Manager of Panasonic Interactive Media, stated, "Image Entertainment's strength in the promotion of DVD video sales and marketing coupled with its aggressive distribution strategy made them the obvious choice for Panasonic Interactive Media. We are confident that Image's ability to aggressively distribute DVD video to a variety of video retail outlets combined with its new state-of-the-art distribution center in Las Vegas will enable us to quickly reach a large consumer audience hungry for the increasingly popular DVD video format. Starting with our first DVD video titles including collections of cult classic TWILIGHT ZONE episodes and the 1998 NAGANO WINTER OLYMPICS, Panasonic Interactive Media will continue to review additional opportunities to expand its product line and its new relationship with Image."

Image will be releasing 57 episodes of THE TWILIGHT ZONE on a total of 15 DVDs. The first two DVD videos will have a street date of November 24, with the remaining 13 DVD videos scheduled to be released incrementally until May 1999.

Image Entertainment has recently entered into arrangements with various key videotape distribution companies, helping the Company to get its DVD video products into more traditional videotape-oriented retail outlets and non-traditional retail outlets. In an arrangement with Navarre Corporation, many of Image Entertainment's top DVD videos will be distributed to CompUSA stores and in arrangements with Baker and Taylor Video, Ingram Entertainment, Valley Media and VPD (Video Products Distributors), Image DVD videos will be distributed into thousands of large and small video retailers nationwide.

Since the launch of the DVD video format in 1997, Image Entertainment has released nearly 200 exclusive DVD video titles and distributes virtually all of the 1,500 DVD video titles currently available. Based on the number of DVD video titles released, Image ranks in the top five of all DVD video licensing and distribution companies, a group that includes major film studios. Image's exclusive DVD videos include such popular titles as SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, TERMINATOR, SIXTEEN CANDLES, ROBOCOP, TINA TURNER LIVE IN AMSTERDAM, MONTY PYTHON'S THE MEANING OF LIFE, MIDNIGHT RUN and the forthcoming DANCES WITH WOLVES and THE ROLLING STONES: LIVE AT THE MAX.

Image Entertainment, Inc. (Nasdaq: DISK) is the largest licensee and distributor of laserdiscs in North America, with the most extensive library of titles in the industry. The Company also has exclusive DVD license and distribution agreements with a number of program suppliers. Additionally, Image has exclusive distribution agreements for multi-channel DTS-encoded software on laserdisc and audio compact disc. Some of Image's exclusive laserdisc licensing program suppliers include Disney's Buena Vista Home Video, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Warner Home Video, MGM Home Entertainment, New Line Home Video, Orion Home Video, The Criterion Collection, Playboy Home Video, and Central Park Media.

Visit Image Entertainment on-line at http://www.image-entertainment.com for corporate and marketing information, on-line Image Preview magazine, DTS information and the latest in DVD and laserdisc releases.

Panasonic Interactive Media, a division of Matsushita Electric Corp. of America, is the Matsushita group's leading worldwide digital software and content publishing business. Based in the Silicon Valley, Panasonic Interactive Media publishes and distributes education and entertainment computer software CD-ROM and DVD-ROM, as well as DVD home video products. Panasonic Interactive Media publishing labels currently include Panasonic, PanaKids and Ripcord Games. Panasonic DVD Publishing is a publishing label of Panasonic Interactive Media.

This release contains forward-looking statements based on current expectations that involve risks and uncertainties including, but not limited to, expansion of DVD market share and expected increases in sales of DVD titles, and other risks as described in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Actual results and events may differ materially from what is expressed or forecasted in such forward-looking statements.




PREVIOUS NEWS (9/9/98)

Here's the full text of Image's official press release, announcing their Dances With Wolves DVD:

Image Entertainment Announces DVD Release of Kevin Costner's Academy Award-Winning Dances With Wolves

Exclusive audio commentary by Kevin Costner and producer Jim Wilson compliment new 16x9 enhanced widescreen transfer with Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound.


Chatsworth, CA - Image Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ/NM: DISK), the largest independent distributor of DVD and laserdisc programming, announced today the November DVD release of Kevin Costner's Academy Award-winning classic, Dances With Wolves.

Kevin Costner, who stars in the 1990 Orion Pictures release and won an Oscar for its direction, pairs up with longtime friend and producer, Jim Wilson, to deliver an entertaining and insightful three hour running audio commentary which is accessible on the DVD release.

Featuring a new widescreen transfer, enhanced for 16x9 monitors, the DVD will also include a Dolby Digital 5.1 Stereo Surround soundtrack. An exhaustive worldwide search lead Image to England, where original audio stems for the film were found, thus allowing for the creation of the new and exclusive-to-DVD multichannel soundtrack.

The dual-layered DVD presentation has a street date of November 18 and will carry a suggest list price of $29.99.

Since the launch of the DVD format in 1997, Image Entertainment has released 142 DVD titles. There are currently over 1,400 DVD titles available and it is projected that nearly 2,000 titles will have been released by year's end. Based on total number of DVD titles released, Image ranks third among all DVD licensing and distribution companies.

Image Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ/NM: DISK) is the largest licensee and distributor of laserdiscs in North America, with the most extensive library of titles in the industry. The Company also has exclusive DVD license and distribution agreements with a number of program suppliers. Additionally, Image has exclusive distribution agreements for multi-channel DTS-encoded software on laserdisc and audio compact disc. Some of Image's exclusive laserdisc licensing program suppliers include Disney's Buena Vista Home Video, Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, Warner Home Video, MGM Home Entertainment, New Line Home Video, Orion Home Video, The Criterion Collection, Playboy Home Video and Central Park Media.

Visit Image Entertainment on-line at http://www.image-entertainment.com for corporate and marketing information, the on-line edition of Image Preview magazine, DTS information and the latest in DVD and laserdisc releases.




PREVIOUS NEWS (4/29/98)

Good news! Image Entertainment has informed me that they have decided to reduce their DVD prices! The decision covers nearly all currently announced DVD product (that has not yet streeted), and the vast majority of future Image-exclusive product as well.

The first titles to be affected by the move, will be those with a street date of May 6th, including: Dracula (1979), The Electric Horseman, the remastered (corrected sound) Flash Gordon, The Rolling Stones - Voodoo Lounge, and Sixteen Candles. All titles will move from $29.99 to $24.99. Titles in other price ranges will drop as well, including the May 13th release of Mozart's Opera: Cosi Fan Tutte. Currently priced at $49.99, this title will now retail for $34.99.

In addition to the price reductions, Image is also working very hard to include more 'extra' materials on their upcoming DVDs, such as production notes, director's commentary, and theatrical trailers.

Image's Marketing Director, Garrett M. Lee, had this to say regarding the decision: "We have listened to our retailers and, more importantly, we have listened to the consumer. While it is a leap of faith on our part, we believe that in lowering the suggested retail price of our exclusive DVD titles, the DVD-buying public will be quicker to embrace the wide breadth of programing offered by Image Entertainment."

Now, let's all hope some of the studios follow suit...


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