poopdeville writes: Starting Friday, Google and YouTube will allow "movie rentals". The first five films available to rent through YouTube will cost $3.99 for a 48-hour viewing period. Movie studios will be able to set their own prices, with rental viewing windows ranging from one to 90 days. YouTube will get an unspecified commission from each rental. The reason: most major advertisers are more comfortable placing their commercials next to professionally produced videos than alongside wacky — and potentially offensive — clips posted by amateurs. The strategy appears to be paying off for YouTube and its owner, Google Inc. Barclays Capital analyst Douglas Anmuch expects YouTube to generate about $700 million in revenue this year, an estimated 55 percent increase from 2009. If YouTube hits that target, it likely will turn profitable, helping to justify the $1.76 billion in stock that Google paid for the site more than three years ago.