1. DIY Digital Distribution: For new filmmakers, finding ways to get people to see their films is just as much of a struggle as making them in the first place. Even for those films that make it into festivals, there's not necessarily a guarantee of a distribution offer. But with the digital shift comes new ways for filmmakers to get their work seen. We survey the various DIY digital distribution options here.
2. Comcast: Shortly after Comcast announced its proposed purchase of Time Warner Cable, Netflix and Comcast made another announcement: Netflix agreed to pay Comcast Corp. an undisclosed fee to ensure Netflix content streams smoothly to Comcast customers. Netflix, which reportedly accounts for nearly 30% of all Internet traffic during peak rates, is basically paying millions for faster and steadier access to Comcast's subscribers. But if this is a pay-to-play arrangement, will all content companies be expected to follow suit? One vocal critic of the proposed merger, Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) has warned Justice Department officials that the deal "could compromise the open nature of the Internet." Read more of what Sen. Franken has to say about it.
3. PlayStation: In December, Microsoft's Xbox greenlit its first series, and now Sony’s PlayStation Network is kicking off its first slate of
originals with "Powers," an hour-long drama based on the graphic novel
by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming. Read more about the news here.
4. Netflix: Meanwhile, over at Netflix, they've just nabbed exclusive rights to the New Zealand series, "Short Poppies," a current affairs-style spoof created and written by comedian Rhys Darby ("Flight of the Conchords"), who also stars. The eight-episode series will launch on April 3rd. Read more about it here.
5. TrailerPop: Social-entertainment app startup TrailerPop announced $750,000 in seed-round of financing from
investors including WME and Manatt Digital Media Ventures. The app, which is available for iOS and Android devices, delivers curated channels with more than 20,000 film trailers along with trivia games, competitions and
rewards. TrailerPop also allows users to connect to digital movie streaming services to watch and/or purchase titles. Read more at Variety.