Thought Equity, Sony Partner To Sell Stock Footage

Stock footage firm Thought Equity has signed a deal with Sony Pictures Entertainment to manage and license the Sony Pictures Collection, a library of film footage from Sony's theatrical brands Columbia Pictures, TriStar Pictures and Screen Gems.

Thought Equity, which serves as a middleman between content owners and film, TV and commercial producers looking to buy unique clips to incorporate into their own productions, says the Sony deal represents the single largest investment by a motion picture film entity in the stock footage business.

The Denver-based company, which already has deals with HBO, the NCAA and action-film giant Warren Miller Entertainment, digitizes archived footage and stores it in uncompressed form in a digital library in Laramie, Wyoming; CEO Kevin Schaff says the archive is located in Wyoming to take advantage of the state's free fiber connectivity.

Potential customers can search Sony clips through the Internet, and Thought Equity will deliver high-definition (or lower resolution) masters either on tape or through high-speed data connections. Schaff says a broadband connection of 6 Mbps is adequate for receiving a high-def download.

Sony Pictures Stock Footage will continue to service customers and sell its content directly, says Brian Merriman, Executive Director of Business Development, Worldwide Product Fulfillment, for Sony. "However, taking on Thought Equity as an exclusive partner will extend our reach and bring our library of more than 70,000 clips to the attention of a much wider audience around the world."