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service Feedback On Device For Cinematic Distribution

bingewave

Member
I created a business model that is going to allow any film to have the opportunity to have cinematic distribution without a marketing budget. Part of the model is a device I created that is designed to fight piracy during the distribution and screening of the film. Link here:

https://distribution.bingewave.com/pages/screeningdevice

I am looking for any feedback from filmmakers and their thoughts before I go high gear into production.
 

OddGinger

Member
I watched your video explaining your device. I don't understand how your device guarantees there won't be a recording device at the other end of the hdmi cable. How do you know that a person wouldn't use a splitter?
 

bingewave

Member
@OddGinger Great question! Without giving too much away, HDMI is a two way communication, not one - meanings the devices connected also give off signals. If we detect something we don't like based on our set of rules, we cut the connection.
 
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I created a business model that is going to allow any film to have the opportunity to have cinematic distribution without a marketing budget. Part of the model is a device I created that is designed to fight piracy during the distribution and screening of the film.
The purpose of the anti-piracy device is evident, although I would share OddGinger's scepticism about how effective it would be, as it essentially doubles up on the inherent anti-piracy protocol of HDMI that you refer to. How can your server interrogate the signal once it's passed through the box?

In any case, that's still the end-stage of the process, where someone somewhere has made a decision to stream/broadcast/project that particular film. So that means it's got to be in a library of downloadable work, which means it's got to compete for the attention of whoever compiles and ranks the content of that list, which surely means that the author/producer of the work has to "market" it just like they've always done?
 

bingewave

Member
@CelticRambler Thanks for you reply! As for as competing for the market, please read the first page: https://distribution.bingewave.com/

We've created a Gig Economy Model where pay people to screen the films towards target audiences. They are typically group leaders of an organization, club, etc. Because they are paid per ticket and have access to the desired audience, they do all the marketing and promotion.
 

directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
The page you link to states, “No budget require for theater screenings.”
and the picture is of a giant screen on a stage with truss, lights and speakers.

Crazy expensive.

You say, “No need for a marketing budget”. Using the same picture as an
example; how do you attract that many people to see a movie with no
recognizable actors made by a filmmaker no one has heard of?

How do you accurately target audiences without any marketing budget?

Forgive me, but I don't see a correlation between this and Airbnb. Sure, you
don't use theaters but you still need a venue to show a movie; a screen, seats,
ticket sellers, ticket takers and the space be it an outdoor area like the picture
or an auditorium or meeting room.

As you point out
they do all the marketing and promotion.
So someone is still paying for marketing, promotion and venue. That means a
budget is needed.
 
We've created a Gig Economy Model where pay people to screen the films towards target audiences. They are typically group leaders of an organization, club, etc. Because they are paid per ticket and have access to the desired audience, they do all the marketing and promotion.
:hmm: How is that a "gig economy model" - that's exactly what happens today. A few years ago, I organised a Saint Patrick's Day event, at which I planned the screening of a small number of Irish-made non-mainstream films. I had a couple of titles that I particularly wanted to include (to tie in with some other presentations) and contacted the Irish Film Board for suggestions as to what else might work for my (French) audience. Their list was made up of independent films that they'd helped fund. It cost me nothing to make enquiries, and eventually I had a figure for the total cost of the event, to include the cost of screening. At that point, it was up to me whether or not to pass on some or all of the cost to the paying public, to look for sponsorship, or to cover the cost from my own operating budget. I can't see how your service would change any of that, neither for me as an organiser, nor for me as a hopeful future indie film-maker. Someone, somewhere has to find out about the movie, if it's ever going to end up on a programme - which means promotion/marketing by the film-maker. What am I missing?

(PS - several spelling and grammatical errors in the demo website. You'll need to fix those if you want to convey a serious, professional image)
 

bingewave

Member
@directorik Thanks I love your reply because it tells me I need to work on my marketing. Few points to address:

How do you attract that many people to see a movie with no recognizable actors made by a filmmaker no one has heard of?

I think films are held back by the perception that you need a recognizable actor. We can talk above movies that had actors like Johnny Depp, Samuel Jackson, Eddie Murphy, Keanu Reeves, Ryan Reynolds that BOMBED. We can also talk about hits like Superbad that pretty much had a freshman crew of actors.

I'd take it like a startup and survey - `Do people really care about name brand actors and/or directors when deciding to see a film?`. Based on our past screening turnouts, the answer is no, what is more important is targeting audiences. Horror films are being marketed to horror fans, black films to black communities, etc. Group leaders who people have more of a personal connection too can outweigh name brand. For example, converting a meetup organizer with 5,000 members of a horror group is a perfect person to organize film screenings.

We have this behaviour all the time, when someone you know suggest trying a new food, referring a plumber, to even what movie you should take the time to watch. That recommendation is more powerful than Scarlett Johanson.

Forgive me, but I don't see a correlation between this and Airbnb.

We don't use movie theaters because the business model doesn't work. The problem with ticket decline is pricing issue, not a quality issue. We've seen it with companies like MoviePass (RIP), to certian movie theater chains that offer $7 movie nights and $5 popcorn on Tuesday and people show up. We've also have various pricing experiments to find the demand vs pricing equilibrium between the two.

Going back to the business model. Theater space is expensive to rent and they require large crowds of 100s of people + concessions marked up over 1000% (no exaggeration) to turn a profit. The result is to raise ticket prices, which have risen several times faster than inflation and caused a death spiral in attendance.

The venues we use like restaurants with event space, only want people to buy 2 drinks to turn a profit. It’s a better win-win-win as film producers bypass expensive theaters, ticket prices are lower for attendees and the venue gets business. Airbnb makes any apartment an hotel, we use any venue as a theater.

Ticket sellers, ticket takers and the space

That's easy, we do that, make it transparent, and give the filmmakers their money within 10 days.
 
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bingewave

Member
@CelticRambler @directorik Let me give an example.

We got the go-ahead to screen 'See You Yesterday' a black film from Netflix. We went to an African mall, the mall wanted more brand exposure and for the vendors to make money from people buying food.

They did about a week and a half of their own marketing for the film, and got 60+ attendees to show-up. Its all about aligning value proposition. $0 spent on marketing and promotion. We weren't allowed to use Netflix name in the promotion either.

How is that a "gig economy model"

By splitting the payment. For a ticket that is $7, the person hosting the screening keeps $3, the filmmaker keeps the other $3 and we keep $1. The person hosting has the option of further making money via sponsors, vendors, etc. Its up to them to be creative event professionals.That is the whole point of gig-economoy, people become creative and turn it into small businesses for themsevles.

Some filmmakers may bark at only $3 per ticket, BUT they are putting no risk (no paying for the venue, not paying for the marketing, etc).
 
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directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
Makes more sense now;

Your company will cover all the costs of marketing, promotion and
venue so the filmmaker doesn't need a budget for that.

I do find it interesting that you believe the business model of movie
theaters doesn't work. It seems to be working just fine from my perspective.
I think films are held back by the perception that you need a recognizable actor. We can talk above movies that had actors like Johnny Depp, Samuel Jackson, Eddie Murphy, Keanu Reeves, Ryan Reynolds that BOMBED.
I think it's more than a perception. Ask any regular movie goer and a
"name" is important in their decision. Movies with every one of those
actors have also done very, very well. A few bombs doesn't mean audiences
are changing the way they decide on what to see.

But I'm glad you are finding an audience for films with no recognizable actors
or filmmakers. However your example doesn't quite fit. "See you Yesterday"
was produced by Spike Lee, features Michael J. Fox and has a 93% on Rotten
Tomatoes. Good enough to attract 60 plus paying movie goers but not exactly
a movie with no recognizable actors made by filmmakers no one has heard of.

Other than horror - a solid genre that relies less on names - have you gotten
paying audiences of over 100 at any screening? Have you done screenings
of one movie in different places with similar results? Have you done multiple
screenings in one venue?
 

bingewave

Member
@directorik Good thoughts!

I do find it interesting that you believe the business model of movie theaters doesn't work. It seems to be working just fine from my perspective.

Ticket sales are declining while ticket prices are increasing to cover people spending less. Its whats known as a death spiral where a downward trend causes an increase in prices, which further accelerates that downtrend.

Thinking towards the future, Netflix and now AppleTV are trying to get films in theater. And its likely other VODs will follow suite to earn revenue outside of subscriptions and/or advertising. The result on the system will be increased competition for a limited resource - theater space.

The impact will negatively affect smaller films. They will have harder time with a marketing budget for the film and will have to pay higher prices for theater space because of the increased demand. And that's where I see a different solution being needed.


Have you gotten paying audiences of over 100 at any screening? Have you done screenings of one movie in different places with similar results? Have you done multiple screenings in one venue?

These are all part of next steps. What we've proven so far is the model can be profitable and that people don't care about going to the movie theater. What has been nice about our screenings it people actually socialize. Next we need to next is scale. Currently here: https://coordinators.bingewave.com/ , there is 100+ waitlist for people wanting to lead screening. My hold-up is the screening device cost I mentioned above. I am going to do a Seed n Spark campaign to raise for it.
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff member
Admin
This device and service is useless if you can't get prove your business model. You need to do test markets where you partner with theaters, actually get films shown, and show what people get paid. You need to show that it works and that these theaters ordered more films and more cities asked for it. Until then it is just an idea.

You also need two sales models. One for filmmakers, one for theaters. You've compiled your message and it is convoluted. You need a website with two tabs. Theater Owners and Filmmakers. Bullet points and selling points for each. You seem to really sell the piracy protection but to me that's just an added benefit not a top selling point, not until it's popular and is a potential problem. If you have this in 50 cities and are showing 5000 films a month, sure, hammer it home.

But you need to split your message and drive it home to each, and prove your business model. Good luck!
 

bingewave

Member
@indietalk Per your comment:

where you partner with theaters

That is against our model per the thread above. We are against theaters, not for them. Hard pill to swallow at first, but companies like Airbnb/Uber and other had the same push back initially bc it was different. I'm 100% use to this reaction.

actually get films shown, and show what people get paid.

We've done that. We've gotten people to pay, created a transparent system, where the filmmaker knows how exactly how much they made and when they are getting their money.

You've compiled your message and it is convoluted

This is what've found valuable per your feedback. Messaging not be clear is something I agree can be worked on and hence why I posted it here to get feedback and learn people's perspective. We have a 3 sided-market, and so far our sales it for that market is good that prove the MVP (Miniumum Viable Product) as a marketplace solution works. Fixing up marketing and a plan to get 5000 films a month/50 cities is part of scaling and growth.

If you have this in 50 cities and are showing 5000 films a month, sure, hammer it home.

You have to consider, no new concept or startup starts in 50 cities. Uber started with 4 cars in one city. Airbnb had fly to their customers home and actually take the pictures themselves, Facebook started on just one college campus. Any major success has gradual growth. Its called "doing things that don't scale", read about it here: https://hackernoon.com/do-things-that-dont-scale-4-inspirational-startup-examples-a2ab3a5c4926

Point being, we've proven this can work and we're on the path to reach those 50 cities.
 
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Ticket sales are declining while ticket prices are increasing to cover people spending less. Its whats known as a death spiral where a downward trend causes an increase in prices, which further accelerates that downtrend.
If true, this must be a US phenomenon. Here in Europe, cinema attendance is still very strong, helped by a relatively healthy arthouse/boutique cinema network, and the screening of non-traditional work such as opera and ballet. There's a slight fall at the moment, but only from record highs in 2016.


The person hosting has the option of further making money via sponsors, vendors, etc. Its up to them to be creative event professionals.That is the whole point of gig-economoy, people become creative and turn it into small businesses for themsevles.
The venues we use like restaurants with event space, only want people to buy 2 drinks to turn a profit. It’s a better win-win-win as film producers bypass expensive theaters, ticket prices are lower for attendees and the venue gets business.
I still don't see the where the opening is in the market. All those options are there for me, right now, and have been for at least three decades. When I was in university, we had a film-night; when I'm travelling, I frequently come across out-door screenings of classic movies in parks and on beaches; when I go to conferences, museums, ruined castles, there are frequently movies being projected in (or on) those venues. I've been to live theatre where a movie has been projected in the background.

So as an organiser, I can get access to both the space I need and the work I want to screen without any great cost or effort. If there's any headache, it's around performance rights, which get a heck of a lot more complicated if it looks like I'm doing this as a commercial activity. As or the marketing, if I'm using the movie as "added value" for some other event, then is your service going to attract my target audience?
 

bingewave

Member
@CelticRambler Yes, good points here.

If there's any headache, it's around performance rights...was in university, we had a film-night....I frequently come across out-door screenings of classic movies

YES! YES YES! This is the biggest issues. As people in the film industry, we have to remove ourselves from the knowledge we have about the film industry. Think back when you were in University, before you first film class, did you know how to get the rights to screen a movie? The same level of knowledge is same level that a bar owner or pastor that wants to show a movie, they have none. And many film screenings are done illegally where the filmmaker gets nothing. One of our goals is to solve that.

So as an organiser, I can get access to both the space I need and the work I want to screen without any great cost or effort.

You're thinking from the perspective of someone with experience again. Take away that experience you have. How do you get the space? How do you know if they have good equipment? Most people do not know this and its a hassle. The point of a platform that allows someone to find a film, get the rights, and book a venue within a few clicks....I have a video on that!!!


And thats the simplicity that it brings where ANYONE can easily do a screening and the filmmaker gets paid automatically. @CelticRambler @indietalk
 
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