YouTube goes to Hollywood

YouTube is brilliant for videos of drugged children, cats doing adorable things, and people sneaking up on their friends in the shower. But for full-length movies? Not so much.

In fact, Google has been trying to get YouTube going as a system for movie rentals for some time. Think about it - why try and get people using a dedicated service, like Netflix on their XBox, when they can just use YouTube? Increasingly large numbers of people have PCs in their living rooms, and countless more watch movies on web-enabled laptops and tablet PCs. (Lying in bed, laptop on chest, watching a DVD: totally fun.)

So far, studios haven't really been biting. But now Google is chasing a new target: Miramax, the smallish, indie-ish studio behind critically-acclaimed films like No Country for Old Men and Trainspotting. Not being part of a Google-rivalling conglomerate like Sony, Miramax is probably more likely to go along with the idea - and its catalogue of over 700 generally high-quality films would probably make more sense on YouTube than a major studio's history of largely wretched action flicks.

It's just a rumour at this stage, so don't get excited, but if this goes through YouTube might become a much more satisfying place to spend an evening online.

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