Film Distribution IN THE UK
In short, what is it? • Film distributors are independent companies that ‘sell’ the film the cinemas, and all things legal (contracts, approval of foreign films) to practical (delivery of film to cinema, production of film prints) to advertisement (posters, commercials) between the making of the film and the screenings in the cinema. An example of a film distributor is Film4, backed by channel 4, it has its own channel to stream movies onto and Film4 makes films such as Slum Dog Millionaire or Peter Jacksons interpretation of The Lovely Bones.
Why is it so important? • The course of distribution for a film is vital in ensuring it reaches the estimated market, this means that it must be broadcasted correctly to not lose out on potential sales. When films are first released in the cinema they have been “hyped up” already by adverts, posters and nearer the theatrical release date, TV interviews with the actors or director. Films may generate 30% of their entire box office income within he first three days, this is important for the cinema as it shows the films playability (how it performs) and therefore how long it should be kept for screenings at the cinema. Films that proves popular with audiences may stay in the cinemas for 6-10 weeks. • E.T. was in theaters for over a year. • Star Wars screened for 44 weeks. • Back to the Future was in theaters for 37 weeks. • Beverly Hills Cop played for 30 weeks.
Techniques and tips • To increase viewings there are several things film broadcasting companies can do, they may release the film on a holiday, especially if it is a sequel or stars a-list actors or they may release the film across a lot of screens around the UK at the same time or to contrast, ‘plat formed’ at a single cinema before going into a simultaneous release elsewhere. Films released on Christmas day 2013: 47 Ronin was released in the USA, The Wolf of Wall Street was released in the USA, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty was released in the USA, Grudge Match was released in the USA, Laborday was released in limited cinemas, The Invisble Woman was released in Newyork/L.A and Justin Beibers Believe was released in limited cinemas. 47 Ronin and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty were released on Boxing Day in the UK.