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Picture Motion Mobilizes Indie Film Audiences to Take Action

Ziyad Saadi takes a look at how Picture Motion works with indie films to create customized, relevant social action campaigns.


Photo courtesy of The Bully Project.

Remember how kids started sharing their bullying stories after the doc Bully came out? The NYC-based firm Picture Motion creates social impact campaign strategies to help independent films find audiences and affect social change. The documentary Rich Hill is one of their upcoming projects, set for release on August 1st.

With the digital age of cinema now pushing the boundaries of film distribution, the possibilities with which filmmakers have been presented are growing exponentially.

Distributor FAQ: FilmBuff 2014

The Independent's Erin Trahan talks with FilmBuff CEO Janet Brown about the VOD boom and FilmBuff's role in it.


"Escape From Tomorrow" was a surprise hit for its filmmakers and its VOD distributor, FilmBuff.

Get a sneak peek at one of the new additions to The Independent's Guide to Film Distribution: FAQ with FilmBuff CEO Janet Brown on the who-what-why of FilmBuff's VOD-centered distribution mission.

Five years ago, FilmBuff (an affiliate of John Sloss’s Cinetic Media) set its sights on the topsy-turvy unknowns of digital distribution. And while FilmBuff has grown exponentially in that time, VOD remains its primary area of expertise.

TFI Transmedia Case Study: "Hollow"

Maddy Kadish takes a close look at the recently launched interactive doc, "Hollow."


From Elaine McMillion's tumblr, while making "Hollow."

As six newly funded TFI transmedia projects go under construction, Maddy Kadish looks at how 2012 grantee, Elaine McMillion, integrated community voice and storytelling in her just-launched interactive doc, Hollow.

The film industry, like the rest of the media world, is trending towards digital, mobile, and online. Change is coming in the form of interactive storytelling and transmedia and Tribeca Film Institute wants in.

10 Filmmakers to Watch in 2011

The Independent's Nikki Chase lists the top 10 filmmakers we think you should watch this year.


An image from "When the Mountains Tremble," a film by Pamela Yates, one of our 10 to Watch. Photo by Jean-Marie Simon © 2011.

Wondering who will be named to The Independent's 10 to Watch 2012 list? Here's a reminder of last year's inspiring filmmakers as we put the finishing touches on this year's roll out.

It's time for our annual 10 Filmmakers to Watch list. We’ve pooled our resources and brainpower to get the scoop on who’s who this year.

Facebook Exclusive Content for 10 to Watch

Via Facebook, The Independent announces our 10 to Watch in 2011 with one filmmaker (and one piece of exclusive content) per day, from May 6th through the 15th.

A still from <i>Short Term 12</i>, a film by Destin Daniel Cretton, one of The Independent's 10 filmmakers to Watch.

We'll be announcing our annual list of 10 of the most talented filmmakers we think you should keep your eye on by posting exclusive content daily on our Facebook page.

Editor's Note: This collaborative reporting effort was led by Nikki Chase, Maddy Kadish and Beth Brosnan.

Beyond a Social Network

At SXSW, Steven Abrams explores the threads between technology, fundraising, and independent filmmaking.


A still from the film <i>Life in a Day</i>.

What's interactive to the third or fourth power? SXSW and its deepening relationship to all things tech and social media. Steve Abrams comments on how, at this year's fest, the intersection of social networking, fundraising, and technology affected the showcased films and which filmmakers are leading by example.

South by Southwest (SXSW) has become a convergence of film, interactive media, and music, as the lines between these media have increasingly blurred. So it's appropriate that David Dworsky and Victor Köhler's documentary, Press Play Pause, was chosen for an opening night premiere.

Distributor FAQ: FilmBuff

In an interview with FilmBuff's Chris Horton, The Independent asks about the evolving landscape of digital distribution, and whether or not it's an independent filmmaker's new best friend.


A still from "The Patriot Act: A Jeffrey Ross Home Movie."

More and more filmmakers use digital release platforms like iTunes, Netflix Streaming, and Video-on-Demand. Chris Horton, head of acquisitions for FilmBuff, explains the role his company can play in digital distribution.

FilmBuff is a digital distribution service provided by Cinetic Rights Management (CRM). Although FilmBuff is less than three years old, its sister company, Cinetic Media, has been a major player in film sales since 2001.

How an Innovative Web Doc Secured Traditional Distribution

French filmmakers David Dufresne and Philippe Brault used web engagement to stir interest in American prison reform.


"Prison Valley" starts traditional and goes multimedia to engage its audience.

Led by two French filmmakers, the web doc Prison Valley addresses prison reform in the US with an interactive online format, making a splash in the world of digital journalism and securing distribution with Arte TV in France.

Prison Valley, a multimedia prison reform project, tells the tale of Fremont County, Colorado: a tiny patch of the Southwest packed with 13 prisons and a local economy that revolves around the incarceration of 7,735 people—many of whom are the county’s own residents.

A Meeting of Worlds: YouTube Biennial at the Guggenheim

Courtney Sheehan reports on the Guggenheim’s foray into digital culture and the mixed reactions to merging low and high culture


Your video could get the Guggenheim seal of approval.

YouTube and the Guggenheim are joining forces to orchestrate “the first biennial of creative video,” called YouTube Play. The Independent's Courtney Sheehan ponders the high-meets-low aspect of this endeavor with help from the blogosphere.

The Guggenheim Museum: one of the art world’s most venerable institutions, home of masterpieces from the Impressionist movement to the modern era.

Building an Audience with Social Media

Social media is free, can reach a large audience, and did we mention it's free? Two filmmakers share pointers on how they used social media to their advantage.


Bill Knight, a central figure in the acclaimed documentary <i>The Way We Get By</i>.

Let's face it...social media is quickly taking over the world. With everyone and their mother – literally – on sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, how can independent filmmakers use social networking to find and build an audience?

Your film has all the elements of an underground hit: tears, laughter, intrigue, love, hate, betrayal… audiences will love it! But you spent your entire budget on production.

So the question remains: How can you effectively spread the word so that your film is viewed by as many people as possible, particularly when you lack adequate funding?

What Is Social Media?

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