HEADLINE: The entire 71 minute feature version of “Four Eyed Monsters” is available for free online.
BACKGROUND: I first wrote about “Four Eyed Monsters” about 2 years ago on this blog after showing the film to my indie film class at The New School. And at indieWIRE, we’ve tracked the film and its filmmakers (Arin Crumley and Susan Buice) considerably along the way (Aug ’05 | Oct ’05 | Jan ’06 | Aug ’06 | Dec ’06.
The latest installment in Arin and Susan’s DIY distribution journey finds the film available for free YouTube via the support of Spout.com (as of Saturday morning it has already logged more than 30,000 views). Arin offered some background on their plans in a recent email to me and I’m sure he won’t mind if it quote extensively from it below…
Check out this page:
Also, this is a surprise until tonight at midnight, but we are uploading our entire film to YouTube and have inserted a message about this spout promotion at the beginning. We’ll be blasting out to all of our contacts and to the blogosphere that our film is available for free online for all to see. Also we have a banner deal with YouTube where we get the majority of of advertising revenue from the banner on the page. And who bought the banner on the page? Also spout.com.
So this is the last step in catapulting our film out into the world. We hope the film being on youtube will give everyone who never got a chance to see it the opportunity to finally check it out. And our hope is that people will want their own high quality copy and buy either a full res download or a DVD. And because we are self distributing our DVDs and Downloads using bside.com, we get the majority of all money made off of sales.
The other thing we are pretty pumped about is that if someone buys a DVD, they get an iPod quality and Apple TV quality verison for free. Or if they buy an Apple TV version, they also get an iPod version, and if they want to just buy the iPod version they can, and finally of course, they can see it for free on YouTube and we get a little money from the sponsorship.
So we think this represents the full spectrum of the most ideal way to distribute films on the internet in todays world. Anyone can see the film if they have an internet connection, and anyone in the world can buy either a download or a DVD, region free and DRM Free. And the way bside.com has it all worked out, when someone buys an iPod download, that is a down payment on the Apple TV download. And when they buy the Apple TV download, that is a down payment on the DVD. So it’s a gradation of involvement for the audience.
In other news Last.Fm was bought by CBS, which I was horrified to find out because I liked Last.FM. But now I’m thinking Spout.com should become the movie tracking service. Last.FM does a great job tacking music and I was hopeful they should get into video but now, it’s not really doing anyone any good to put that data in the hands of a major corporation, I don’t think they’ll do the right things with that info.
The reason why it’s important to the filmmaker for people to share that they’ve seen a film on a social network is that it can help sponsorship and investing opportunities for future films and it can cause the fan base to get contacted next time you have a new film. But the real reason is that long term, there could be subscription models that give you access to all films and the fact that you have watched the film would be something you voluntarily provide to help the subscription fees get divided up back to the filmmakers. Read this article here posted three years ago about this model. It’s the only model I believe in, but it’s not possible today, however, social networking will pave the way for it to become possible.
More film futurist type ideas in our blog post about this spout deal we just posted.
Hope all is well, and let me know if you want any more info about any of this,