I want to tell you about a fellow named Arin Crumley and why you all need to pay attention to him.
Mr. Crumley co-produced, conceived and directed a little film called Four Eyed Monsters (along with Susan Buice who I must also give credit to as they created the film together). This gem of a film essentially followed Crumley and Buice’s real life relationship and its ultimate demise. It’s a beautiful film, but it’s not just a film. FOUR EYED MONSTERS was the beginning of a new way to look at film as a participatory medium with regards to distribution. After it’s premiere at the Slamdance Film Fest, people started to request the film be shown in their city and the participation began. ”They used a custom designed Google map which showed the zip codes with the largest number of people requesting the film. And in September 2006, they screened the film in six cities every week during the month.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_Eyed_Monsters)
That’s right folks, the people, the movie going audience helped distribute the film to their communities…a revolution is born… with distributors falling away each and every day how do people see the movie you made? Well have your audience WORK FOR YOU! Have the audience screen the film anywhere, in their home, in a local theater, at a YMCA rec hall or even in their parents back yard. You send a screener to the “distributor” aka audience member. They take donations, you provide the popcorn, the audience becomes a participant in the process… genius!
So this guy Arin basically took his distribution model for Four Eyed Monsters, a film he basically put on his credit cards (and his girlfriend at the time put it on her credit cards) and started getting viewers to promote and distribute the film. This is something that he did almost four years ago when this sort of thing was practically unheard of… self distribute? Why bother!?
Well cut to 2009 and more and more distributors are going under, hell everyone is going under. You were the lucky few who actually got money to make your movie… now what? How do people SEE the movie you made? Well Arin Crumley along with Kieran Masterton came up with a plan. It’s called OPEN INDIE and you should check it out here
Essentially Open Indie is a website where people can list films they want to see and anyone can screen a film anywhere and take donations to then give to the filmmaker… There is more to it so I implore you to check out the site above and then DONATE! It will cost you $1 people… $1 that’s it to become a member. Now you can donate more. If you are a filmmaker for example you can donate $100 to get an hour of free consulting and opportunity to showcase your film on Open Indie. Phase 1 of this project is about getting 100 films up and running on the site. To me this is about getting a collective of filmmakers together in one space to showcase the films that they made and having the audience participate in distribution… again it’s genius and it’s a new and exciting way to get your film out there in a time when traditional means of getting your film distributed is becoming virtually impossible.
Here’s the catch Open Indie has until October 29th to raise $10,000 through kickstarter.com. If they don’t reach their goal the money will go back to the respective donors. They have to raise the $ or they need to rethink the plan. In fact, Arin has said that maybe there is not a need for this right now. BULLSHIT. There is a need, people need to wake up, get off their ass and donate a couple dollars to a project that is trying to change the way film is distributed!
So stop reading this… go to the link above and become part of the change=)