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Netflix has been accused of crushing all competition before it – the BBC Store being its latest victim – but its CEO doesn't think it's a threat to the cinema.

Speaking at the Code Conference, Reed Hastings said that going to the cinema was more of an event, akin to going out to dinner. Streaming a film at home, meanwhile, is more like cooking in your own kitchen, he reckons.

Hence cinemas will always have a place, "just like you go out to dinner even though you know how to cook," he said.

However, critics point out that eating out is far easier than cooking at home, whereas going to a cinema is more effort than streaming a film in the comfort of your own lounge.

Hastings also thinks that it's inevitable that films will soon come to streaming services on the same day they're released in cinemas, and that this won't affect the viability of cinemas.

This time period between a film's cinema release and it arriving on streaming services can last up to 90 days, but it could be shortened soon due to shifting viewing habits. Apple has reportedly looked into making films available on iTunes just two weeks after they're released in cinemas.

Hastings admitted that Netflix's films have proved less successful than its series, because you can't binge-watch them as you can a TV series. "I think it's fair to say we've been amazingly successful at series and we're just getting started on movies," he said.

He also refuted claims that Facebook was gunning for the same sorts of TV series as Netflix (Hastings sits on Facebook's board of directors, so this would put him in a tricky situation). "There's not a conflict yet," he said. "They're not doing 'House of Cards'. We're not bidding on the same shows. So not a big deal there."

Source: The Verge, Re/code (1), (2)

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