Guillermo Del Toro Says Physical Media Owners Are Preserving Film History
The director warns against streaming-only film releases.
Guillermo Del Toro recently endorsed the significance of physical media, aligning with Christopher Nolan's views on film ownership in response to streaming trends. Variety reported Nolan's commentary during discussions about the home release of Oppenheimer, a $950 million-grossing atomic bomb drama set to hit Blu-ray and digital platforms this month.
Del Toro, echoing Nolan's sentiments, shared the director's remarks on social media platform X (formerly Twitter), underlining the responsibility associated with owning physical copies. "Physical media is almost a Fahrenheit 451 level of responsibility," wrote Del Toro, emphasizing the role film enthusiasts play as custodians of beloved films for future generations.
Physical media is almost a Fahrenheit 451 (where people memorized entire books and thus became the book they loved) level of responsibility. If you own a great 4K HD, Blu-ray, DVD etc etc of a film or films you love... you are the custodian of those films for generations to… https://t.co/ETGUNhKNoL— Guillermo del Toro (@RealGDT) November 20, 2023
Nolan's concerns about the ephemeral nature of streaming versions, where titles are taken down with little to no notice, further support the critique of streaming services. Many platforms are now known for increasingly removing streaming-only offerings, which presents clear challenges when titles become unavailable elsewhere. Or as Nolan stated last month, he advises purchasing the Oppenheimer disc to ensure "no evil streaming service can steal it from you."
Using the example of Disney's Crater, Del Toro highlighted the pitfalls of relying solely on streaming platforms. The family adventure, initially available exclusively on Disney+, was abruptly removed in June, reappearing only as a digital release in September, leaving audiences without access for months.
Earlier this year, del Toro compared the movie-making process to "eating a sandwich of sh**." At the Annecy animation festival, he remarked that Hollywood is "geared toward grinding out sh** and destroying your art," as reported by The Hollywood Reporter. Despite being an accomplished, Oscar-winning director, del Toro revealed that he still faces rejection for his pitches.
Oppenheimer was released November 21 on Blu-ray and digital platforms.
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