DirecTV to offer movies 60 days after theatrical release for US$30 beginning April 21; directors sign open letter saying move by studios could harm film industry, lead to more theater closings

LOS ANGELES , April 20, 2011 () – Big-name Hollywood action flick directors including James Cameron and Michael Bay have come out guns-ablazing against a plan by studios to make new release movies available to rent in homes just two months after debuting in theaters.

They slammed the offering, being made available starting Thursday to DirecTV subscribers for $30, because it could cannibalize movie ticket sales at a time theater owners are upgrading movie houses with new digital and 3-D equipment.

The directors signed an open letter saying the new offering could "irrevocably harm" the film industry and lead to more theater closings.

Studios are struggling to offset the steady decline in DVD sales.

The first movie available Thursday is Sony's "Just Go with It," a comedy starring Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston.

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