Will 'Paranormal Activity' Teach The Movie Industry A Lesson?
from the Blair-Witch-wannabes dept
They wised up indeed, and they also started promoting this movie in an interesting way, too -- by getting potential fans to demand it be shown in their neighborhoods and nationwide. Paramount promised to distribute the movie nationwide if a million requests for the movie were logged via Eventful. And it looks like they've already reached that goal.
Goodman also admitted that DreamWorks, formerly a leg of Paramount co-headed by Steven Spielberg, had swooped in and pocketed 'Paranormal Activity' with every intention of leaving it on the shelf and remaking it with a big budget and marquee stars. Then they wised up.
As I said, I didn't like Blair Witch very much, and I'm not exactly looking forward to this movie, either. But from a pure business angle, it seems a bit shocking that movie studios wouldn't be trying to find/create more low-budget films that would appeal to moviegoers. Promoting the distribution of films in a way that actually target fans is a smart move, too. So with this example, there are about a million customers (or at least thousands, if you don't believe the Eventful numbers) willing to pay to see this movie that was made for (much) less than a $1 per fan -- and the movie studio's first gut-instinct was to try to re-make the film and drive their own costs up? It's a strange industry where insiders are always asking "how can we make a $200 million movie?" rather than how can they make good, but profitable movies, no matter what the cost. The industry seems so focused on what movies cost, that it so rarely seems to consider spending money more intelligently. Creating quality works for less, and targeting your best customers is a plan that's foreign to Hollywood, but perhaps it's about time they start exploring that plotline.