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Genie Grants Disney's Video Wish : Marketing: Robin Williams will reprise his 'Aladdin' role in 'King of Thieves,' continuing the emergence of direct-to-video projects as an industry gold mine.

September 27, 1995|DANIEL HOWARD CERONE | TIMES STAFF WRITER

"There are a lot of ideas being explored," Daly said. "But candidly, they have to be ideas that hold weight, because this is a new business. We're asking consumers to go to video stores to buy new first-run movies. You're changing entertainment patterns, and it has to be worth it."

In the case of a Disney franchise such as "Aladdin," with toys, record albums and a TV series, a video sequel builds the value of the franchise.

The direct-to-video category could help grow an already thriving video industry--a $14.9 billion business last year that pulled in more consumer dollars than theatrical movies, audio tapes, CDs and video games.

For the direct-to-video niche to prosper, executives involved agree that the key is maintaining the creativity and quality of the productions.

"From a marketing point of view, there's tremendous challenges," said Louis Feola, president of MCA Home Video Inc. "You're competing with front-line theatrical product. You're trying to cut through all of the other non-theatrical product. So what you're trying to do is build an expectation and satisfy that expectation to the consumer."

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