DAILY NEWS: Stipe and RSUB; AntEye Gives Production Deals; QuickBand Acquires "True"
Eugene Hernandez and Maya Churi/indieWIRE
>> In DotCom Deal Michael Stipe Restructures Two Film Ventures to Create SELF TIMER, RSUB Takes Majority Interest in New Outfit
(indieWIRE/4.19.00) For a company advertisement in indieWIRE's daily
Sundance publication, Michael Stipe and Jim McKay proudly touted
their company, C-Hundred Film Corp., proclaiming, "We have no website."
Now, that is about to change.
Michael Stipe, producer, photographer and member of the band R.E.M., is
creating a parent company for his two film production companies -- Single
Cell Pictures and C-Hundred Film Corp. Dubbed SELF TIMER, the new company
is being launched with a majority investment from RSUB, the entertainment
company and web destination (http://www.rsub.com) that is a former
division of leading Internet company Razorfish.
In a conversation with indieWIRE yesterday, Michael Stipe explained,
"It just made sense to hook up with the most challenging Internet
company, people who are incredibly bright -- I think there is a lot
of talk right now, the thing that I like about RSUB is that they are
actually doing something."
Continuing by comparing the RSUB website to a Paris salon in the
1920's Stipe added, "Its like when I was in my early twenties and
wanting to find a group of people I could be inspired by -- that's
what RSUB means to me."
RSUB President Michael Simon and company Chief Creative Officer
Craig Kanarick spoke with indieWIRE yesterday about the scope of
the pact. The deal is a "mid-seven figure agreement" that includes
a development fund as well as an infrastructure for SELF TIMER. The
two subsidiaries of RSUB will remain autonomous and maintain their
identities -- while Single Cell produces entertainment with mainly
Indiewood companies, C-Hundred produces low-budget, indie projects.
"We're an artist-focused company," offered Simon, "We don't deal
with the medium of expression as the key differentiation, we deal
Explaining that RSUB is committed to building a "digital salon"
of artists, Kanarick added that the company is also pursuing
cross-platform entertainment and will challenge SELF TIMER to
re-define the way it produces film and entertainment, "We think
about stories that are exploited across the formats from the
Michael Stipe and Jim McKay co-founded C-Hundred in 1987, while
Stipe and Sandy Stern formed Single Cell in 1995. C-Hundred
recently produced Chris Smith's "American Movie," Tom Gilroy's
"Spring Forward," Hannah Weyer's "La Boda," Jem Cohen and Peter
Sillen's "Benjamin Smoke" and McKay's "Our Song." While Single
Cell produced "Being John Malkovich" and "Velvet Goldmine."
SELF TIMER 's first Single Cell project will be Jill Sprecher's
"13 Conversations About One Thing," written and directed by Jill
and Karen Sprecher, while the company's upcoming C-Hundred
project's include Christopher Munch's "Backward Looks, Far Corners,"
Lisa Collins' "The Grass is Greener," Walid Read's "Hostage," and
Cheryl Dunye's "Stranger Inside."
C-Hundred's Jim McKay has hardly embraced new technologies, having
only recently established online access and an email account.
Despite that, the deal does make sense to him. "I think
the big change, philosophically or creatively, we will start
to think about our projects in a slightly different way -- we
might even think about doing different types of projects.
"I really like the RSUB philosophy," McKay continued, "As a
luddite myself, I've totally been hesitant about a lot of this
internet stuff, but they are an internet company that is not
just an internet company."
Joking about the deal, McKay quipped, "Well, we will no longer
be able to use the motto 'we have no website.'" [Eugene Hernandez]
>> AntEye.com awards first round of production deals
(indieWIRE/4.19.2000) -- AntEye.com, a website that offers
pilot production deals for filmmakers, has announced the recipients
of their first round of funding. The deals, worth up to $100,000
each, are AntEye's effort to empower regional filmmakers to create
content that has potential to break into traditional and non-
traditional distribution outlets. Each of the six winners were
honored at satellite-linked parties hosted by Seattle and
connected with five other cities on April 15th.
The winning creators include: Mike Anderson's "Ph Balance Soothing"
(Atlanta), Kim Flores and Mike Swenson's "Maid! Madonna! Whore!"
(Austin), Ethan Shaftel's "Hulahoop" (Kansas City), Paul Fuchs,
Scott K. Nolin, and Mike Grunder's "Birds Love Eye Juice" (Madison),
Tamara Paris' "It's Only Temporary" (Seattle), and Colin Tattersall
and Jay Williams' "E for Effort" (Toronto). The deals will provide
the filmmakers with the expertise of AntEye's professional digital
producers and crew in creating pilots of their films for possible
theatrical, television or internet distribution. [Maya Churi]
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>> Quickband Networks Acquires Worldwide Rights to "True"
(indieWIRE/4.20.2000) -- QuickBand Networks, a distributor of
short-form entertainment and DVD's has secured exclusive worldwide
rights for the short film "True" by Charles Stone III, which
inspired the popular "Whazzup!" commercials during the Super Bowl.
The film, which is presently screening on On2.com's Fast Film Fest,
will also be included on QuickBand's upcoming premiere DVD release
entitled "Afrocentricity," a compilation of short films by African-
American filmmakers. The DVD will also offer behind-the-scenes
information on the film. Recently, QuickBand Networks was acquired
by On2. Com Inc. [Maya Churi]