Ira Deutchman's New World Theatrical Experiment

As the head of Emerging Pictures, Ira Deutchman has been exploring the exhibition opportunities that are (still? becoming?) possible for non-studio films. Digital distribution and projection have made huge-budget-mass-market-3D-events possible. But what about arthouse films? For example, is it possible to make money doing one-night-only screenings of 6 new British small budget films in multiple US locations followed by live Q&As broadcast to those select US theaters?

While the technology exists to distribute and project microbudget films - without having to strike any expensive prints - the trick, of course, has been the expense and difficulty of marketing "small film" events.

One promising experiment, pioneered by Ira Deutchman at Emerging Pictures, has been partnering with established film societies and interest groups (in this case, the Film Society of the Lincoln Center and the UK Film Council) and reaching out to carefully targeted audiences via their email lists, web sites and social networking channels.

If you're intrigued by the potential of this combination of social media and "event" theatrical distribution, you should follow Ira Deutchman's blog.

In the 21st Century multiplexed world, indie-film veteran Ira Deutchman is pioneering a new theatrical model for niche market films. If he succeeds, there might just be screening opportunities for many more (your?) microbudget films. In addition to Thor and Green Lantern, niche audiences might one day be alerted via trusted curators to select microbudget films playing one-night-only in their neighborhood theater.

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