Insights from home entertainment industry experts. Home Media blogs give you the inside scoop on entertainment news, DVD and Blu-ray Disc releases, and the happenings at key studios and entertainment retailers. “TK's Take” analyzes and comments on home entertainment news and trends, “Agent DVD Insider” talks fanboy entertainment, “IndieFile” delivers independent film news, “Steph Sums It Up” offers pithy opinions on the state of the industry, and “Mike’s Picks” offers bite-sized recommendations of the latest DVD and Blu-ray releases.
The Independent Film & Television Alliance has some words about online piracy for the Department of Commerce, urging them and other government agencies to enhance copyright protections. IFTA’s comments came in response to a Notice of Inquiry issued by the department to gather more information from stakeholders to effectively battle piracy.
“The policy and technological solutions that emerge from this proceeding should assist in establishing a transparent framework that takes into account advances in technology and the need for protection of copyright to encourage further innovation,” said IFTA President-CEO Jean Prewitt. “We believe solutions are achievable through government leadership and cooperation among all stakeholders and are necessary to ensure that investment in independent content can be recouped and new online distribution models developed.”
IFTA says piracy inhibits independent filmmakers from recouping expenses on productions in order to create future films. The organization recommends government oversight in establishing mechanisms to protect copyright and innovation digitally.
IFTA also urges adopting international standards for copyright, such as the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Act.
It’s good to hear IFTA put their muscle behind this issue. Piracy takes a big chunk out of the DVD pie, where most indie filmmakers make their money.
By: Billy Gil
Distributor Film Movement has announced its titles to release to video-on-demand providers for November. Film Movement VOD titles hit users of Comcast, Time Warner, Cox, Bresnan, RCN and Brighthouse services.
Titles incldue The Hebrew Hammer (comedy, starring Adam Goldberg), The Pope's Toilet (comedy, from Uruguay) and Choking Man (drama, from director Steve Barron, who directed awesome video clips from A-Ha's "Take on Me" and Michael Jackson's "Billie Jean"). Other titles still available from Film Movement include All My Friends Are Wedding Singers, XXY, Nurse.Fighter.Boy, Wolves in the Snow, Hell on Wheels, Toward Zero and Pulling John. Not all titles are available to every provider; check your VOD listings to see which films are available.
By: Billy Gil
Ever wanted to go to the Sundance Film Festival? Now’s your chance.
Time Warner Cable in association with IFC (lots of IFC news this week!) has launched the Time Warner Cable Short Film Contest, which will award four grand prize winners a four-night trip for two to the 2011 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. Video submissions are accepted from Sept. 15-Oct. 31 through Time Warner’s YouTube Channel (www.youtube.com/timewarnercable).
Entrants can submit two- to five-minute videos. Consumer voting takes place between Nov. 9-16, and winners will be chosen between the vote and a panel of expert judges, including filmmaker Joe Swanberg (Hannah Takes the Stairs), Ti West (House of the Devil), IFC and Sundance Channel president Evan Shapiro, ad IFC News host Matt Singer.
The prize packages include hotel, air and ground transportation, two tickets to a film screening at the festival, an invitation to a VIP party, a one-year subscription to Time Warner Cable digital cable and Road Runner high-speed Internet service, and $500 in spending cash.
By: Billy Gil
Acclaimed director Harmony Korine (Gummo, Mister Lonely) has teamed with the International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR) for a new project for the fest’s Cinema Reloaded digital film production and online fundraising platform.
Korine will collect finances for his next film entirely through Cinema Reloaded and will premiere the film at the IFFR in January 2011, alongside two previously announced projects from Ho Yuhang (15Malyasia) and Alexis Dos Santos (Unmade Beds). Korine introduced the project today with a video message on www.cinemareloaded.com.
Cinema Reloaded launched earlier this year and allows filmmakers to garner funding online from film fans globally. Korine, Yuhang and Dos Santos will keep contributors updated through video messages on the platform’s site.
A pretty exciting new way of funding independent films, no? Perhaps they’ll screen the films online too, exclusively to contributors?
Read an interview I did a while back with Korine here.
By: Billy Gil
Okay, this is pretty cool: MVD Entertainment Group is offering fans of Iggy and the Stooges the chance to film and interview the band as they perform proto-punk masterpiece (and one of IndieFile’s favorites) Raw Power at the All Tomorrow’s Parties Festival Sept. 3. The footage will end up as a series and eventual film called In the Hands of Fans, which will come to DVD, Blu-ray and VOD by early 2011.
Fans can submit short, high-definition videos asking questions of the band or demonstrating why they should win the contest, at www.InTheHandsOfTheFans.com. Six fans will be chosen to join director Joey Carey on location at the Stardust Theater at Kutchers' Country Club in Monticello, N.Y., where Iggy Pop, guitarist James Williamson and original Stooges drummer Scott Asheton will reunite, alongside fellow rock legend Mike Watt on bass and Steve Mackay on saxophone.
“Raw Power is one of the greatest, most dangerous albums in the history of rock and roll,” says Ed Seaman, COO of MVD Entertainment Group. “We are honored to enable the fans this connection with the band; this will be a dream come true for the winners.”
MVD is in talks with other artists and is looking to have five more similar programs shot within the next six months, for a series.
As an added bonus, contestants will receive an offer to buy the film early, with exclusive bonus material.
Check out the contest on Facebook.
By: Billy Gil