Independent Movies Eldorado Is Just Around Corner: The Long Tail Of Films
Just like it has been happening for books and music, independent producers of films and videos are going to witness the greatest opportunity ever to hit their hopeless dreams: the long tail of films is here.
Photo credit: Yahoo Movie Recommendations (c)
In an extremely well-documented analysis Chris Anderson, documented how fundamental changes in the entertainment marketplaces gave way to a completely new market paradigm, one in which savvy online distributors leveraging appropriate new media technologies are now making the largest share of their profit not from selling best-sellers and popular hits but from the extended range of little-known titles, which nonetheless have markets of few hundreds or few thousand buyers, comprise hundreds of thousands of titles.
In good substance, the new online distribution services from Amazon to iTunes, Rhapsody have already proved that their economic profit is not created anymore by carrying and selling the blockbusters and the most popular tracks: the great profit is in the long tail. That vast number of unpopular, often non-commercial, niche books and music CDs which have proven to have solid, quantifiable small audiences willing to pay for what they like and not for what is promoted as popular.
The vision of the long tail entails that an increasingly greater number of digital content authors, from book writers to independent musicians will soon realize that the race to be a star is finally over. There is no need to be one, to make a living while expressing and sharing your creative talent.
The long tail ushers an era in which content authors will not search anymore for a market of a million readers or listeners but for a million markets of ones.
And if the long tail concept has proven to reflect the reality of online book and music distribution clearinghouses why shouldn't the same concept apply to films too?
This is what I see coming.
Enormous opportunities for independent movie producers, documentarists, video makers and reporters of all kinds. Anyone of them now can have a multiplicity of markets and tiny audiences to serve.
Once you erase the prohibitive costs of converting video to film ($ 30-50,000), of doing Dolby-certified soundtrack ($ 5-7,000), or of making multiple master copies to send out to film festivals around the world, independents can start to make a profit.
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