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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Peter Buckingham says... (part2)

Peter Buckingham is Head of Distribution for the UK Film Council. He is also a friend of Circumference. Here are some more phrases from his speech to the 'Power to the Pixel' conference.

He says...
The future is about having no gate keepers. Currently a film maker has to go through 7 gate keepers to reach the audience - festival pickers, distributors, exhibitors etc. Each gatekeeper picks films that they believe, with their experience, the audience will want to see. This is a system that obviously works so well that 75% of tickets are unsold.

Can we find a new distribution strategy? Here are 4 ideas:
1 - Free cinema screenings. Theatrical (ie cinema screenings) is just an advert for DVD sales anyway, where the big money is. And about 70p per person is already collected through advert sales.
2 - Video on demand
3 - Subscription models
4 - Use film as an advert for other 'real world' events. This is an idea from the music industry. Recorded music has become an freebie to get you to go to gigs where the big money is. Gigs can't really be pirated. They are 'analogue'.

I say...
Anything that gets the film maker and audience closer together is a good thing. I've been talking about it for over 2 years now. See! (croaky old man's voice; "I told you all')

I really like Peter's 4 ideas. Circumference being closest to idea 1 I suppose. But I wonder if you added pop corn sales and extra merchandising ideas (like soundtrack / posters / DVDs of the film you've just seen) to it then you could possibly have a really free theatrical strategy. What would be the impact of that I wonder? I also wonder if idea 3, subscription models, could apply to theatrical instead of just DVDs? Similar to people who have a ticket to an opera season. Idea 4 was a new one to me. But I really go for it. But what could be the analogue / real world / events for cinema. What is the film equivalent of a gig?

Last bit from Peter tomorrow.

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1 comment:

Unknown said...

subscription models - you already have this to an extent. I used to work in the box office of Virgin Cinemas which became UGC Cinemas and they did a monthly subscription where you paid a set rate and could then go and see as many films as you liked.