Bob Berney's Slo-Go Theatrical Distibution vs. Alternatives Like Day-and-Date
Bob Berney is the mastermind behind the most famous word-of-mouth marketing campaign in motion picture history - My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002).
And that success wasn't a fluke, Bob Berney also had a big hand in marketing Whale Rider (2002), Memento (2000) and The Passion of the Christ (2004). Still, while Bob Berney is licking his wounds from the implosion of Picturehouse and forming a new company, others are seeking to take Bob Berney's place as the king of indie movie marketing, arguing that Berney's SLO-GO techniques have been made obsolete by the Internet.
Independent filmmakers have more options for distribution than ever before. But the choices come with risks and no one can say which will work best for your film: Slow start in one or two theaters to build word of mouth for the eventual DVD? Or maximize the advertising dollars by a day-and-date release in many theaters, on DVD and on the web? Or how about a free release on the web to build an audience, followed by (higher quality) DVD sales online?
Eugene Hernandez of indieWire blogs from SXSW 2009 about a conversation with Bob Berney and what other leading experts are saying about theatrical distribution and the alternatives.