29 March 2011
Just read a press release from Big Air Studios. They claim that they will revolutionize independent film distribution. They boast a somewhat influential founding team of established filmmakers. I read through the press release trying to figure out exactly how they would ‘revolutionize’ the distribution. I was unable to figure out how.
They claim that they will have a robust distribution platform that will allow consumers to have access to their library through multiple means to a potential “150M consumers.” They will use some Cisco technology to make all this happen. At least that’s what they seemed to want to talk about.
The CEO, Michael Arrieta, formerly EVP of Digital at Sony Pictures, said this: “Every year thousands of movies are produced, each with its own passion and creative vision behind it. Access to distribution is the key to success for these films, but too often they fail to reach their intended audiences.” I’m not sure I completely understand that statement. iTunes is here. YouTube is here. Filmmakers do have access to distribution. What I was trying to figure out from the press release was how Big Air Studios was different, from the perspective of the filmmaker.
iTunes makes money for itself, because it makes money from a vast library of digital content, the individual producers of which see very little of. iTunes still makes money just because of the numbers associated. Most individual content producer on iTunes will be lucky to receive $1,000 check from Apple in a whole year. Yes, for most filmmakers, it’s worth the trips to Starbucks. That’s about it.
So what I was really looking for from the press release was to find out what Big Air Studios would do to sift through its library to promote the content that stood out. What is their marketing plan? Most blockbuster films do well partly because of the marketing blitz. Maybe Big Air Studios can’t do that. I’m not expecting them to. But I’m trying to figure out what exactly it is that they do that makes them different from any other existing distribution platform. What is it that makes them independent filmmaker friendly?
I was unable to figure it out from the press release. And I was only trying to figure out what was so revolutionary about this new iTunes like platform. If I learn more, you can count on me to write an update.