A young Czech company, Artinii, has come up with a new technology that enables global film distribution. In this series we’ll explain how we do it. Today we’ll share more about who we are and our key concepts - community screenings and leftover films.
Artinii - Part I: It’s all about community
The Artinii (Art in Intelligent Interaction) concept revolves around an online platform in which producers and distributors interact directly with their viewership. The platform includes an intelligent search engine that recommends the right content based on their taste and film-related behaviour online. (More on that in the coming articles)
But a platform would be useless without users. Typically, in film distribution, the customers are cinemas, the traditional film-screening venues. These days screening a film only requires a projector, a screen and a paying audience. At Artinii we have taken to calling these communities.
Community? What’s that?
A community, in the film distribution context, could be any group with a shared interest, such as Czech expats abroad, UFO-trackers, French culture lovers, outdoor “adrenaline junkies” or sci-fi geeks. Far from being hypothetical examples, these are Artinii’s actual, successful past projects.
In the past, we targeted a Czech expat community by reviving Elementary School, an old Czechoslovak film by the award-winning Jan Sverak. In only 6 weeks we managed to organise 160 paid screenings all over the world. Boxoffice? 38,000 EUR revenues and 7,500 sold tickets.
We were approached by a large group of UFO-lovers in Estonia with a very proactive leader, whom we were able to offer a rare, out-of-distribution film called First Contact. The result was a month's worth of screenings all over Estonia and more than 4 000 USD in revenue.
We know there are actually many more communities out there. British Indians in London is a community of more than 0,5 mil, for example. From Artinii’s perspective - potential Bollywood film fans. Yet there is only one Bollywood Festival in London, and there are still not many Bollywood films in standard British distribution. We see a big, active community of film enthusiasts who would love to host a community screening of Mother India or Bandit Queen. With the Artinii platform they can get access to these, and hundreds of Bollywood films, easily, securely and for an affordable price.
That’s what distinguishes Artinii from the others: Looking at the film distribution from the community perspective. We help bring people together by offering the best possible content they would otherwise not be able to get - or content they might not even know exists.
Give us your leftovers
Artinii doesn’t use a traditional distribution model. We’re not interested in buying exclusive rights - that is, to screen a film in a certain country in a certain period of time. What we offer is acquiring so-called non-exclusive rights. For a producer, there are no commitments; your rights still belong to you. At the same time, your film will be available on our Artinii platform for individual screenings all over the world. Some 10 000 films are produced each year, but only a fraction of them actually make it to a distributor, and that might be only in some countries. The rest is “leftovers”. Yet even these have their viewership all over the world. We at Artinii make sure every film finds its audience.
As the founders Vit Krajicek and Ctirad Hemelik say, Artinii, doesn’t compete with anyone, not even the distributors. On the contrary: we offer to breathe life into old films in a second run. Same with the films produced but never distributed; there are thousands or more sitting in distributors’ back shelves which have been deemed ‘too old’ for a cinema run since three months after their premiere. All of these have their audience - or community - somewhere. Artinii can connect them.
With its specific business model Artinii is able to offer yet another specialty to producers: global premiere community screenings. Without taking exclusive rights from the producer, we are able to screen a film in thousands of places worldwide at once.
Imagine an independent producer with a very specific film: a piece on spirituality and the human condition. Regardless of its artistic merit it might fail without making any money. Artinii, through its platform, has already targeted spiritual communities all over the world. We could give this producer an opportunity to premiere their film globally to these communities with guaranteed revenue, and without losing exclusive rights.
To sum up
On their way to today’s Artinii, the founders realised a few things:
And that’s where Artinii comes in. We:
To learn more about Artinii Click HERE.
In the next article, you’ll learn more about Artinii distribution.
Many thanks to FNE for an opportunity to publish these articles.
About the Author: Eva Pešková:Ex-freelance journalist, a film geek since childhood, Eva currently works for a Czech film distribution company Artinii.