It may be less costly for DirecTV to finance its own movies than buy the rights to them from the studios. At any rate, that may well be the thinking behind the satellite company's announcement that it will finance films by studio A24 and offer them to customers 30 days before they hit the big screen. (Ordinarily movies don't land on the video-on-demand platforms of cable and satellite TV providers until around six months after their theatrical release.) DirecTV said that it will put up about $40 million to co-finance films produced under The Deal. Reporting on it, today's (Monday) Wall Street Journal observed, The partnership highlights the importance of the growing video-on-demand market for independently financed films, many of which struggle to gain attention in theaters. It also indicates the Steps pay-TV operators are taking to expand their on-demand services as they seek to retain customers in a stagnant U.S. business and differentiate themselves from rivals.