When A More-than-due Golden Globe To William Peter Blatty Outraged Hollywood

 

is memoir, Starflacker: Inside the Golden Age of Hollywood)

One question which is chatted up in Hollywood at this crucial waiting-for-the-Oscar-noms time of the year is “do the Golden Globes awarding influence, foretell or in any other way impact the names and films which will decorate the nominations list? (to be read out on January 24 this year) There are usually some overlaps and also some Hollywood Foreign Press Association winners who don’t make the Oscar countdown at all.

In 1980 one Globe awardee came in from such deep left field, an achievement not vaguely on the minds or tongues of Oscar electors, that there was instant scandal when it was announced. It drew such wrath that there was question if the award show would be telecast the following year. The recent passing of super-best-selling “Exorcist” and Oscar-winning screenwriter (for the adaptation of his book) William Peter Blatty brings that all-but-forgotten Golden Globe controversy to mind.

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In-Home Movie Releases

It seems as though we’re once again toying with the idea of in home movie releases. According to an article from variety.com earlier last month, Napster mogul, Sean Parker, is backing up a new startup that offers consumers new releases in the comfort of their homes.

The Screening Room, acts as an anti-piracy technology which streams new releases from the included “set-top box”. Screening Room would charge consumers an initial $150 for setup and charge $50 per film. Exhibitors are projected to receive as much as $20 of the fee, while distributors would get 20%.

According to variety.com, Jeff Blake, former Sony Pictures worldwide marketing and distribution chief, is involved in the project as he has both studio and exhibition connections. Variety.com has also shared that Screening Room is working on closing a deal with one of the largest exhibitors, AMC.

In home movie releases seems to be a doubled edged sword for all parties involved. While there’s appeal to studios struggling with piracy online, exhibitors worry that signing an agreement could potentially hinder and already diminishing box office. Technology has unfortunately made newly released movies available illegally online within an hour of their release, which attributes to the continuous decline in attendance at theaters.

While the concept of being able to stream a movie, the day it’s released, from the comfort of your home is appealing, we’re not sure how practical it is. Variety shared a poll on their Twitter which asked followers whether or not they’d spend $50 to rent a new movie that same day it hits theaters, the results speak for themselves. When consumers can go and see a movie for $11 dollars at virtually any movie theatre, $50 seems like a rather steep price.

In home movie releases is certainly a convenient luxury, and in a society that eagerly chases efficiency and convenience, you’d think it would be a sure-fire win. Should Screening Room offer consumers a more justified price, I think more people would be receptive to the idea. Like everything in technology, it seems to be a waiting game, only time will tell.

 

Check back for more blogs from Roy Dekel, or visit his other website at RoyDekel.net!

TWO LIKE INVESTMENTS- MOVIES AND REAL ESTATE

Investment in media is being looked up as a very viable and profitable alternative investment as compared to other traditional investments. Though film equity investors can be found but they are very rare and the competition for the investment is fierce. But as it is with any other investment, the same principle of profit and risk ratio applies- greater the profit, greater the risk. The maximum return on the investment leaves much to be desired financially. For an investment to be sound, it has to generate profits and that too, a sizeable one. A film needs to be thoroughly prepared, have an attractive script, have an excellent business plan, the right pitch and a knack of bringing out the best in its team.

Udi Droner, Director of Operations, Precise Real Estate solutions, says, ” It is imperative that the film makers and financiers analyze the movie investment as they would review any other financial investment”. He further elaborates,” investment in media is the same as investment in real estate and the benefits of the investment need to be studied well at every stage, right from the pitching of the location, budget, to the management of the development”.

Investment in cinema is treated as unpredictable or as a magic wand delivering unreasonable profits. It is essential to adopt a mature approach to the investment and reign the expectations within limits. Contrary to common belief film business does have an impressive history of stability like the real estate market. The demand for films never waivers and even when the markets face a financial crisis, film businesses have the ability to churn out profits, albeit lower ones. There are examples of films grossing in huge profits when major investments were hit by global recession. Investment in films have shown great resilience and stability.

Many venture capitalists like Roy Dekle, CEO and Partner at LAG Entertainment Group, review the investment prospects in the entertainment field and make sound investments. They have recognized the cinemas unparalleled ability to stir up cultural conversations and benefit the community at large. Though it is a profitable investment it is always advisable to pay attention and check whether:

 there are legal disclaimers attached and what they say,

 does it have a well organized business plan,

 does it give a fair idea of the paucity of investments,

 the contents of the project synopsis are clear,

 the team details are mentioned,

 does it state the hypothetical investment returns,

 does it have a substantial plan detailing the project handling.

These and other necessary details can give one a fair and clear picture of the calculated risk one is about to take. These details also should be kept in mind if one is looking for investors. It is generally the individuals with high net worth and philanthropists who are ready to invest in such projects, looking for connections and referrals through them too can be very helpful. Usually non-profit organizations or communities linked to particular causes find such projects worth investing. Roy Dekel, charity forays, identify the films with subjects and stories that can help in the community building process and betterment of the society, it is such films that are thought worthy of investment according to him.

The initial investors of the film add the credibility factor for the potential investors. It’s very few films like ‘The Slum dog millionaire’ or ‘The King’s Speech’, which prove that there’s big bucks for the private investor in the movie market. Investing with partners or other instruments available in the market can be a good option. Investing in a prestigious production company mitigates the risk without having to do any leg work or production work. This often leads to partnership for next films too, if relationship formed is strong and profitable. Another way of investing in the media is through film funds, a number of which have emerged over the past few years.

In spite of the inherent risks and steps taken by investors to avoid the worst , many films however promising pre-release may never see the light of the day failing to deliver even reasonable profits. But if a film does flop it does have the potential to break even or show some profit in the overseas market, DVD rentals, video streaming or in the form of royalties. If the silver screen holds allure for you then it is the best to apply the standard rule which applies to all investments- never invest more than you can afford.