The streaming pool just keeps getting deeper. Joining fellow boutique distributors like Kino Lorber, Film Movement, and Cinema Tropical, Grasshopper Film is now making the jump into the streaming world, armed with the brand-new Projectr, a deeply curated platform that already boasts films from auteurs like Bong Joon Ho, Claire Denis, Hong Sangsoo, and Pedro Costa.
“So many of the acclaimed international and American Independent films that cinephiles hunger to see have fallen through the cracks of current TVOD providers,” Grasshopper Film founder Ryan Krivoshey told IndieWire. “With Projectr, we are seeking to remedy that oversight and create an accessible treasure trove for movie lovers. We’ve long contemplated a curated streaming platform — where viewers could immerse themselves in some of the most adventurous, exciting and important independent cinema. During these past months, we’ve realized this is more urgent than ever.”
Available today, Projectr will function as both a traditional streaming platform and one of many forward-thinking outlets for “virtual cinema” in a time when the ability to catch a movie at a brick-and-mortar theater is in constant flux. That distinguishes it from likeminded cinephile showcases like the Criterion Channel, in that Projectr audiences will be exploring new releases as well as the substantial library of international cinema it has acquired since Krivoshey, who previously ran Cinema Guild, started the label five years ago.
The boutique distributor, already known for bringing unique American independent, international, documentary, and short films offerings to cinephiles, will now turn that attention to home entertainment. The site includes films for three-day rental or purchase, including never-before-released Grasshopper titles, as well as other hard-to-find libraries.
It will also provide a new virtual cinema outlet for rentals of the latest acclaimed releases through exclusive engagements, complemented by director introductions, interviews, filmmaker Q&As, post-screening discussions with critics and scholars, and related features and short films. Virtual cinema engagements will benefit independent theaters around the country, and viewers will be able to purchase “tickets” through their local theater’s virtual screening room, ensuring that half the “box office” from each film will go directly to the theater of their choosing.
“The hope with Projectr is to create a destination for a new audience of virtual cinema-goers and to make the experience of watching virtual releases as special as possible,” Krivoshey said. “We want Projectr to be a home for movie lovers, both old and new.”
Titles available at launch include Costa’s “Vitalina Varela,” Denis’ “Towards Mathilde,” Bong’s “Influenza,” Hong’s “Hill of Freedom” and “Woman on the Beach,” Mariano Llinas’ “Extraordinary Stories” and “La Flor,” Bi Gan’s “Kaili Blues,” Eduardo Williams’ “The Human Surge,” Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s “Asako I & II,” Robert Greene’s “Bisbee ’17,” Bertrand Bonello’s “Nocturama,” Park Chan-Ok’s “Paju,” and Feras Fayyad’s “Last Men in Aleppo.”
Projectr is also featuring a wide-ranging collection (with more to come) entitled “Black Lives, Black Stories,” which includes free streams of films by and about Black lives, including celebrated works by Khalik Allah, Andrew Rossi, and Billy Woodberry.