Walt Disney Co. is fighting to keep the hero from the Red Planet out of the red kiosks and the red envelopes.
A feud that flared up this week over the DVD release of “John Carter” has demonstrated the growing tension between rental giants Redbox and Netflix and Hollywood movie studios desperate to prop up their shrinking home entertainment businesses.
Disney this spring informed all of its rental partners that it would no longer provide them with DVDs until 28 days after the discs go on sale, according to people with knowledge of the situation not authorized to discuss it publicly.
Universal Pictures and 20th Century Fox have taken similar positions in hopes of steering consumers away from discount rentals — Redbox charges just $1.20 per night, while Netflix monthly prices start at $7.99 — and toward more profitable DVD purchases and video-on-demand rentals.
The studios believe that fans eager to see a movie right away will pay $5 for a video-on-demand rental or about $20 to buy a DVD if they have no less-expensive options. More price-sensitive renters, they believe, will wait.