DAILY NEWS: Palm/Sputnik Series Deal; IFILM's Secret Sauce
by Eugene Hernandez/indieWIRE
>> Merger Deal Not Sealed, But Palm and sputnik7 Announce Series Pact
(indieWIRE/ 11.28.00) -- Palm Pictures and sputnik7.com have been active of
late, announcing a number of deals even as they dispute recent reports
(including one in indieWIRE sourced to Inside.com) that the two companies
are merging. Yesterday, Palm and sputnik7 announced a partnership to create
their first web series together -- it is entitled "We Deliver."
Co-created by indie director Seth Zvi Rosenfeld ("A Brother's Kiss," "King of the Jungle"), the live action series will include ten 3 - 5 minute
"webisodes" that will debut on sputnik7 in January, according to an
announcement by David Koh, the head of acquisitions for both Palm and
sputnik7. Palm Pictures' Ryko Distribution will release the series on DVD
next year, according to the announcement.
As for the reported merger between the two companies, CEO David Beal
released a statement via a PR rep, calling the deal "possible" but
indicating that "there have been talks but nothing has been finalized."
Beal's statement, dated last Tuesday, indicated that sputnik7 has other
"strategic business deals" that it expects to announce soon. He went on to
endorse the value of such an "online-offline" strategy as would be afforded
by a Palm/sputnik7 pact, singling out the recent release of Marc Singer's
"Dark Days." In the case of that Sundance 2000 award winner, the doc was
scouted by RES & sputnik7 and released by Palm, according to Beal. It will
be distributed on DVD by Ryko.
[DISCLOSURE: indieWIRE Publisher Karol Martesko is a member of the Board of
Directors of sputnik7.com and a co-founder of RES Media Group.]
Rosenfeld's "We Deliver" is set to star Rosie Perez, Danny Hoch, Sarita Choudury and Tricky. [Eugene Hernandez]
>> Recipe for Success? IFILM Programmer Has it Figured Out
(indieWIRE/ 11.28.00) -- The secret to success online has been revealed by
IFILM Director of Programming Jesse Jacobs. The former head of the Yahoo! Internet Life Online Film Festival, who joined the site earlier this year,
declared yesterday that "online film revolves around three universal obsessions -- sex, sci-fi and 'Star Wars'."
Writing in his new weekly "Full Screen" column devoted to web cinema, Jacobs
made the case that a number of sites, including AtomFilms ("Bikini
Bandits"), MediaTrip ("George Lucas in Love") and even IFILM ("Summoner Geeks") itself, are abiding by these rules. "On behalf of online film
programmers, I confess: We are all sinful disseminators of sex, sci-fi and
'Star Wars,'" Jacobs wrote in the column (which can be found on IFILM.com),
"Now that I've admitted as much, the least you can do is admit that you love
me for it."
Jacobs also used the opportunity to thank the site's visitors for putting it
atop the recent Media Metrix ratings among broadband sites. At press time,
the URL -- sexscifiandstarwars.com -- remained available for registration.
Good luck. [Eugene Hernandez]