Indie Update

Veteran producer Lawrence Meistrich aims to rescue independent film

This isn't quite like a library. You are still releasing films on a schedule.

Yes, we choose and ship a feature and a short every month. But it's a myth that you as the consumer pick the films you want to see. Twenty people like me go to Sundance and Cannes and buy things and you can pick from what we bought. But you're not really picking. HBO picks for you, Miramax picks for you. We're just saying that up front. And what we've done is put together a panel of curators from Cannes, Sundance, AFI, other film organizations -- Nicole Guillemet, who runs the Miami Film Fest, is now on our board of curators.

Are you going exclusively through film fests or can filmmakers approach you?

You Can Count on Me producer wants to get indies into your home
You Can Count on Me producer wants to get indies into your home

Filmmakers can approach us if they are members. Our criteria for entry for selection is that you have to have played at one of the top seven or ten major film fests in the world -- Sundance, New York, Toronto, Cannes -- the very established, very hard-to-get-into film festivals. Everything we bought has won something at one of those film festivals in a major category. You will need to have major-market positive press, which is a result of being at one of those festivals.

Is there enough product?

There is plenty of product. This year 2200 films were submitted to Sundance -- 100 get in, two get studio deals. The rest are in play. Of those 2200, 2000 are terrible but of those 200 that aren't, there are some real good films out there.

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