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Studios reportedly nearing digital distribution deal with Apple, Comcast


Warner Bros. and Universal Pictures are negotiating a deal with Apple and Comcast to offer audiences digital versions of movies two weeks after their theatre releases, Bloomberg reports. Sources familiar with the matter tell Bloomberg that the deal could come as early as next year. As more consumers watch movies via streaming services, studios want a digital distribution package that help will make up for the decline in DVD sales and home entertainment.

Why it matters: The theatre chain and studio businesses have been unable to compromise on a more expensive ($30+) digital movie option. At issue for some studios is the cost/benefit analysis of charging ahead without the blessing of theatre chains, who still hold enormous power distributing movies and driving revenue. Noticeably missing from the negotiations is Disney, which announced it would build its own entertainment streaming package.

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D.C.'s March for our Lives: "The voters are coming"

Protestor at D.C.'s March for our Lives.
Protestor at D.C.'s March for our Lives. Photo: Axios' Stef Kight.

D.C.'s March for our Lives event is expected to see more than half a million participants.

Why it matters: While D.C. is the primary march, there are hundreds of others around the world and across the country. Led by students, the march is "to demand that a comprehensive and effective bill be immediately brought before Congress to address" gun issues, per the organization's mission statement.

Haley Britzky 4 hours ago
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DOJ eyeing tool to allow access to encrypted data on smartphones

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

The Justice Department is in "a preliminary stage" of discussions about requiring tech companies building "tools into smartphones and other devices" that would allow law enforcement investigators to access encrypted data, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: This has been on the FBI's mind since 2010, and last month the White House "circulated a memo...outlining ways to think about solving the problem," officials told the Times. Both FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, support finding ways for law enforcement to access data without compromising devices security.