Article by Herb Kimble
We have had some interesting revelations for filmmaking in the last few years. Indies learned that building a social media following is crucial to success, but we also learned that some standards degrade even as visual effects became more important to filmmaking. It’s now 2019 and we’re all mobile. What role that trend will play in the future of film is still not clear, but here are some ideas on what could happen.
Costs of Technology
Part of the reason that distribution felt like a risky proposition was universal adoption. Technology is much cheaper than it was before, and more people have screens that can broadcast movies on them at all times. Mobile Web also gives us digital video anywhere our travels take us, so streaming may take off as more studios recognize that the demand is there. The true conundrum is infrastructure and payment. Figuring out who gets which piece of the pie, and how big that piece is, can take a lot of delicate negotiating. Still, we have already seen Warner Bros. test this kind of marketing with distribution on Facebook.
Fans and Financing
Funding for films has taken an interesting route lately with crowdfunded projects like the Veronica Mars film. Traditional financing still has a place, but fan-funded films come with a built-in fanbase that makes them attractive to distributors. This trend may continue to grow, hopefully with some regulation in place to make the atmosphere less of a Wild West. As is, the fan who backs a film shoulders the risk. Even though that risk is mitigated over several hundred or thousand people, fans with a stake of ownership in the film may be more invested (and vocal) about the outcome.