Beyond the Box Office Book: A Guide to Online Film Distribution

Tweet Back in 2007 I had an email exchange with Pete Chatmon about his movie Premium. I was trying to find out where I could see it. As it turned out it wasn’t showing theatrically anywhere near me and I had to wait for it to come out on DVD. So much for instant gratification. At that moment I decided I would write a book for filmmakers on how to make their films available online, at that time the options weren’t as numerous as they are now. I think the time is ripe for a book like this one because there are many more options now for filmmakers and distribution deals haven’t got any better. Later in 2011, I look forward to sharing with you the case studies, the tools and how tos for distributing one’s film online. Stay tuned by signing up...

What Google’s Chrome web store means for independent filmmakers

Tweet Googlers realized that web application developers were plagued with two problems: discovery and monetization. You see with the plethora of web applications out there it's really hard for developers to have their really good applications discovered, worse, besides littering them with ads, it's hard to find a monetization model that works, because people are used to using web applications for free. Sound familiar? Enter the Chrome Web Store. A place to download (and pay for) applications that run on a browser. Google wants to collect premium web applications in one place, have a consumer see ratings and reviews, much like iTunes does for movies, Amazon does for books, Apple app store does for iPhone/iPad apps. As we all know, Google's greatest strength is search so finding good applications is likely very easy. You know, good applications like your awesome movie packaged as a web app, enhanced with the capabilities of the coolest mashups. Or maybe an online game related to your film. According to the speaker, games are the most popular type of application on any app store. So how do you get in? The details are very sketchy right now, but if it's anything like their Android app store it's completely open and anyone can put anything up. On the Android app store they tend to be more reactive, pulling down a harmful app after the fact. It has one obvious advantage over your film as a YouTube rental, psychologically consumers are used to paying for apps from an app store, while they are not used to paying to watch videos on YouTube. It's too early to...

Whistletree, sad to see you go

Tweet I am really at a loss as to what to do. I have been using this wonderful service called Whistletree to record the interviews for the book on online film distribution Simone Nelson and I are working on. Simone and I are often in different locations for the interviews, plus the interviewee, necessitating a three-way conference. I'm horrible at taking notes so the fact that the calls were automatically recorded made it even better. We typically set the interviews for 30 minutes but they often go over that. It didn't matter where the conversations ended up, whether it was Adam Chapnick of Distribber talking about his daughter's birthday party or filmmaker Josh Raskin talking about his love of baths (long story), because all of this is FREE. So imagine my sadness when I saw the note from Whistletree today saying it was discontinuing its service, PARTICULARLY when I have like 3 more interviews to schedule RIGHT NOW. Here's an excerpt of their email. It is with a heavy heart that we announce Whistletree will be discontinuing our conferencing service. The last day that we will be able to provide conferencing is Monday, May 17, 2010. As many of you are aware, free conferencing services, like ours and others, have become targets in the US for long distance carriers. This has resulted in an increase in connection issues. We addressed these issues by creating and offering a number of customized services. Unfortunately, the issues we are encountering have progressively become an uphill battle. We have been working until the final hour to find a way to continue offering our...
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