The Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice today announced that it has officially filed a motion to terminate the Paramount Consent Decrees. Filed in 1938 to prevent seven major studios from exerting undue control over the exhibition industries, the series of consent decrees—known collectively as the “Paramount Decrees”—were officially brought into law in the late 40s. Key issues were block booking, circuit dealing, resale price maintenance, and overboard clearances.
Said Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division in a statement: “The Paramount decrees long ago ended the horizontal conspiracy among movie companies in the 1930s and ‘40s and undid the effects of that conspiracy on the marketplace. The Division has concluded that these decrees have served their purpose, and their continued existence may actually harm American consumers by standing in the way of innovative business models for the exhibition of America’s great creative films.”