Encyclopedia > Direct-to-video

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A film that is released direct-to-video (DTV for short) is one which has been released to the public on home video[?] formats first rather then being released in theaters initially.

Direct-to-video releases are generally considered to be of lower technical quality or, simply, lower quality than theatrical releases. Some studio films that are released direct-to-video are films which have been languishing for some time without release, either because the studio doubts its commerical prospects, or because its "release window" has closed (i.e, it may have been rushed into production to capitalize on a timely trend or personality, and was not completed in time). Such films are referred to as "vaulted" in industry slang.

Direct-to-video releases are also done for films which sometimes cannot be shown theatrically, either because of their content (they may be too controversial for theaters) or because the cost involved in a theatrical release is prohibitive to the releasing company. Almost all pornographic films are released direct-to-video, as well as many animated productions.

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