The showing of films by video/DVD to groups of prisoners or staff requires a licence as it constitutes public performance.
There are two licences as no one licensing body covers all the main studios.
The cost of licences in the 2008-09 financial year for the Motion Picture Licensing Company (MPLC) and Filmbank was £315,883 and £39,774 respectively. This equates to £3.60 per prisoner per year (or lp a day).
Films have been shown to prisoners for many decades.