We’ve seen real innovations in the way that films are being distributed as of late. Many films are being rolled out for a pre-theatrical release via On Demand. This helps build word of mouth and buzz before the actual opening date of the movie, and allows people to see the movie who might not otherwise have the opportunity until the movie is released on DVD.
Now comes word that online retail giant Amazon is poised to change the very way that movies are developed. The Los Angeles Times has reported that Amazon will start a new website, Amazon Studios, that will partner with Warner Brothers for a first look option at new movie scripts and sample movies.
Here’s how it will work: writers and filmmakers will be able to upload their scripts and sample movies directly to the site. The site community then will provide feedback and suggestions for the submission. The cream of the crop will brought to Warner Brothers, and if a film is optioned, Amazon Studios might end up producing the project.
Roy Price is the president of Amazon Studios, and he claims that the idea is to update the decades-old process of script submission and movie development, and bring it into the digital age. There is a catch, though. People who submit their ideas will be signing off on an 18 month exclusive right to their material by Amazon Studios. Still, for the creative type who hasn’t been able to get their foot in the door, this will be a viable option.
If their submission becomes an actual movie, they will receive $200,000 from Amazon. There will also be monthly prizes awarded to top-ranked projects. Panelists will include Jack Epps, Jr (screenwriter; Top Gun) and Michael Taylor (producer; Bottle Rocket).
We are very excited for anything that will generate fresh and original material. It will be interesting to see how it all pans out.