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Saturday, January 20, 2007

When dealing with distributors ...

it's always a good idea to consult the people they are already distributing.

Got a few emails from some people I contacted about a few of these distributors that keep tugging at me. And boy am I glad I contacted them. I've learned some very interesting things about some of these fairly popular companies. Now I'm not gonna name any names, or give away too much, that would just be bad business karma. But just know, over the next year, I'll be helping out my fellow indies by getting the word out about their product. I swear some of these guys just plain got screwed by their distributor. And these are some VERY good movies.

One indie filmmaker in particular made a deal with, let's call them Company A. Company A has had there movie for about 4 years now and they've barely done any marketing and have only sold about 500 copies. I'm hoping to God their contract is up with Company A soon. This particular movie is EXTREMELY marketable and a decent distributor should have no problem at least clearing 10,000 copies a year. Let's say you sell 10,000 DVD's at about 11 dollars each, that's $110,000.00 a year, and if the contract is 70 percent of profits to the distributor and 30 percent to the filmmaker, after the expenses have been recouped we're talking at least $24,000.00 to the filmmaker for one year. In 4 years that should have been a total of $96,000.00 that should have been paid to the filmmaker. In this case since Company A has only sold 500 copies in 4 years, the profit goes to recouping expenses of the distributor first. Which basically means this particular filmmaker hasn't seen a dime.

Tip: Be sure there is a stipulation in your contract with the distributor that says if they don't earn you X amount of dollars within X amount of time, then you retain all rights.

And what's even sadder is that we are only talking about DVD sales. What about pay-per-view, digital download, mobile video, cable, even theatrical? Your distributor should be busting his ass getting your movie out there. He should be hitting the pavement screaming to people about the catalog of great movies he has including yours. I swear talking to some of these filmmakers and really hearing these horror stories, just confirms my beliefs. Why am I going to hand over my movie to someone who is only going to do what I can do myself? The problem with DIY distribution is that you may not have the clout and weight of an experienced distribution company, but I've got the contact info for the pay-per-view folks, I know that I can easliy make my movie available on DVD, online, and even in some retail outlets, I can put my movie up for digital downloads, and I'm not that far off reaching basic cable. And as far as marketing is concerned, hearing the inside track of what alot of these companies do to get marketing done, is basically what I was going to do except I won't have to pay someone else to do it.

Unless a distributor can come up to me and offer me something that I can't do, then maybe I'll work with them. But for alot of these companies that I've been dealing with, I've been doing the research, I've been getting the info, and it doesn't sound like you can do any better job than I can. As a matter of fact it sounds like I can do a much better job than you, because I've got the full passion of this project. I love this movie. It's my baby and who better to take care of it than the baby daddy. Yeah that's right, I got fuckin ghetto on your ass.

Bottom line is, if you want something done, you gotta do it yourself.

ya-ya ya know it!

And yes I've been listening to the Ghostbusters 2 soundtrack.

AND SPEAKING OF GHOSTBUSTERS! Look what was leaked recently.

GHOSTBUSTERS 360 BITCHES!!!!


But apparently there are some licensing issues, so there is a possibility this is as close to a game (or a sequel) we'll ever get. I'd also like to note that this is similar to the look I'm going for with MONSTER COPS / SHADOW COMPANY. For a few of the action scenes that is.


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