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Guest Post: Felicia Ptolemy “Tool Review: Transcendent Man on The Dynamo Player”

Guest Post: Felicia Ptolemy "Tool Review: Transcendent Man on The Dynamo Player"

A while back we had Dynamo Player’s founder Rob Millis introduce us to this useful tool for DIY Distribution. But how do the filmmakers using it, feel about the Dynamo Player? Today, Felicia Ptolemy, one of the producers behind one very successful film, Transcendent Man, shares their thoughts on the Dynamo Player.

I look forward to sharing more direct reviews of the tools we use to get our work made and seen. If you are filmmaker using some of the innovative tools and methods that both necessity and opportunity has offered Indie / Truly Free Film recently, let us know your experiences. Write to me and we can run a post for the community, okay?

Transcendent Man is a film about the democratization of technology. Basically, exponentially growing information technologies are allowing for an explosion of new applications that are disrupting entire industries and offering powerful tools to people everywhere. Dynamo is one such tool, affording the filmmaker, directly, the opportunity to offer our audience immediate access to our film and ease of payment, which together create an instantaneous and seamless viewing experience.

With today’s audiences expecting and demanding to watch movies the way they want to watch them, Dynamo introduces the unique convenience of an embeddable video player that can be hosted on any relevant destination. We started by putting the film on our own website – the first place our potential viewers go to learn about Transcendent Man and find out where they can watch it. As a filmmaker, once you capture the interest of a viewer, you want to close the deal. There is so much content out there to distract people and by eliminating the need to go to another site to watch the film, we’ve captured the audience interest at its height. We also simultaneously put up the Dynamo player on our Facebook fan page, where many new and existing fans of the film go daily to share information and debate the ideas – it was a perfect spot to again access a passionate and interested audience (who can also easily share the film with their network) and offer the film for rent right there on the spot. By creating this flexibility and allowing us to embed a player right at the source, Dynamo gave us a tool to combat a primary challenge facing filmmakers today: content over-proliferation.

Also, with exhibitors still demanding a 90-120 day holdback to DVD release, Dynamo offers a more timely opportunity for our fans, which are demanding that a film like Transcendent Man should be available via many portals using any and all new technologies. This is the primary reason we wanted to use Dynamo, who was the first video player application that could accept safe, reliable forms of payment via trusted sites like PayPal. Couple that with the capability of embedding the video player on any website or portal where Transcendent Man is relevant to that site’s content and we have an exponentially growing audience who is not being blindly marketed to, but rather who have found the film naturally through their own likes and interests. Highly democratizing!

For these reasons and many more that we are still learning, Dynamo is a powerful tool for filmmakers and self-distributors. We’ve even had filmmaker friends learn about Dynamo through us and thank us for making them aware of a tool with so much potential. It’s a portal that offers access and convenience to a targeted audience and expands on your existing fan base organically across the web. It transcends the limitations previously put on filmmakers whose goal has always been to just get more people to enjoy their films.

— Felicia Ptolemy

Felicia Ptolemy is an independent producer working in television and film for the past 10 years. She produces under the Ptolemaic Productions banner with her husband, Barry Ptolemy. Her most recent project, Transcendent Man, the documentary about Ray Kurzweil’s life and ideas, is available on DVD and iTunes.

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Amy Slotnick

The great thing about dynamo is it is a rev-share model so no upfront/set up costs are needed. I have a film on there which has had close to 2500 rentals so far after about 8 months. You set the rental price and period so what you earn has a lot to do with that. Also they responded to a recent suggestion and set up a tool allowing customers to gift the film rental to someone else. The rental period then doesn’t begin until the receiver accepts the gift.

Andrew S Allen

Is anyone willing to share actual numbers on how much their film (short or feature) has been able to generate through Dynamo? I hear a lot of good things about the player but few real world stats. I’m really curious to know how much income a typical film will generate using Dynamo.

phil o

thanks audrey! so are they transparent on all transactions so you know exactly how many people have paid?

Audrey Ewell @AudreyEwell

Felicia, did you have to follow their massively long instructions for putting it up on fb, or has that been streamlined? How are the metrics for tracking transactions derived from there? Is it clear?

Phil, we put our film, Until The Light Takes Us, up on Dynamo (on our website) about six months ago. In our experience, they’ve paid on time with no hassle (I only request payouts when we hit $1,000 but they’ll do it at $250).

People should also reach out to them for promotions, they’re generally wiling to work with you. No complaints about them at this point. Except that they haven’t featured us on their blog, which is annoying. And yes, I mentioned it to them. Why not? To your overall question – they seem honest.

You can see how we’ve arranged our film and extras (all available to stream) on our site here:

phil o

how are they on payment? are they timely and hold to their word?

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