DAILY NEWS: Shooting Gallery's Meistrich Resurfaces; Fox Searchlight Has
a Hot August with "Girl" and "Photo"
by Eugene Hernandez and Matthew Ross/indieWIRE
>> Shooting Gallery's Meistrich Resurfaces, Founds a New Movement
(indieWIRE: 08.27.02) -- When independent film outfit the Shooting Gallery
had its well-publicized and unexpected meltdown in June 2001, company founder
Larry Meistrich immediately retreated below the industry radar. Now, more than
a year later, Meistrich has resurfaced atop a new venture with an equally
snappy title: the Film Movement. Meistrich discussed the new venture with
The privately financed company, which is best described as the combination of
a traditional specialty distribution company and a subscription-based video
service, quietly opened its doors in April 2002. Now, with the opening of
the Toronto International Film Festival just over a week away, Meistrich has
launched his first publicity push and has already begun to make some bold
predictions. In addition to releasing 12 first-run films per year through Film
Movement, Meistrich hopes to sign up more than 100,000 subscribers to the
service, targeting film lovers in areas with a lack of specialty theaters. For
$189 per year or $19.95 per month, subscribers will get one DVD (or VHS tape)
each month, and subscribers will also get free tickets to all Film Movement
Meistrich said that he's already signed up more than 1,000 subscribers
through market research and through friends and family.
Despite the home video service, Meistrich made it clear that his new
company will compete with theatrical distributors for film acquisitions.
"We will market these as theatrical films," Meistrich told indieWIRE.
"We will be very competitive. This is about access. We're creating
several mechanisms to create access to these films for our consumers."
Meistrich said he plans to expand his subscriber base through
traditional marketing and publicity efforts, as well as partnering with film
festivals and affiliate film societies. Film programming and selections
are supported by an advisory board that includes Rich Raddon,
IFP/West Los Angeles Film Festival, Richard Pena, Film Society of Lincoln
Center, Christian Gaines, AFI Los Angeles International Film Festival,
and Bob Hawk, ICI (Independent Consultation for Independents). The
company has already acquired Achero Manas' "El Bola,"