With movie theaters shutting down, many distributors have embraced “virtual cinema” releases and made their films available through theaters’ websites and split the profits with the venues. For “Spaceship Earth,” a new documentary about the famous 1991 “Biosphere-2” experiment, Neon is partnering with a wider range of business for the online release.
IndieWire is joining forces with the distributor to release the film, and donating our portion of the proceeds from every rental to support coronavirus relief efforts. Starting Friday, May 8, you can rent the film for $3.99 starting at this link.
Fifty percent of all proceeds will go to Team Rubicon, a non-profit, volunteer-based organization that mobilizes military veterans to continue their service through recovery efforts associated with disasters and humanitarian crises.
Our partnership on the release of “Spaceship Earth” provides us with a unique opportunity to explore the infrastructure of the virtual cinema release and potentially share data with readers about viewer habits over time. It will allow us to deepen our understanding of the ever-changing transactional VOD marketplace.
“Spaceship Earth” premiered in the U.S. Documentary Competition at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. The latest historical non-fiction feature from acclaimed director Matt Wolf (“Teenage,” “Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project”), the movie follows the eight men and women from a utopian collective who were sealed into a terrarium in the middle of the Arizona desert, where they lived for two years in a replica of Earth’s environment. In the process, they contended with a range of interpersonal and practical challenges.
Starting Friday, May 8, you can rent the film at here. Your one-time purchase will give you access to a virtual ticket to view the film. To ensure that you are able to pause and revisit the film within your rental period, you will be required to create a free Vimeo account. After you have created an account and entered your payment information, your rental period will start immediately and last for 72 hours. You can view the film via the link in the receipt sent to your email, or simply by clicking “Watch Film” when the confirmation page appears directly after purchase.
IndieWire will donate its proceeds from all rentals to Team Rubicon every 30 days. Team Rubicon has deployed over 500 disaster response operations around the world. In response to the coronavirus outbreak, the organization is serving in communities across the country by providing assistance such as delivery service for food-insecure populations, coordination and logistics support for those returning home from a temporary quarantine, crisis and incident management support, as well as individual volunteers safely helping their vulnerable neighbors by performing simple acts of service or completing basic errands.