GOING BIONIC: DISTRIBUTING INDEPENDENT FILMS INTERNATIONALLY – CANNES 2013 SPECIAL REPORT #1 “RAIN RAIN, DON’T GO AWAY!”
Greetings from rainy Cannes, and welcome to the first ever Going Bionic Special Report! Today we’re going to talk about how the one thing everybody hates in Cannes (rain) may generate the one thing everybody loves (money)! I personally hate rain, but I love money more than I hate rain, so I can live with less than majestic conditions, if those conditions help to generate more sales. So, here are a few quick points of why severe thunderstorms could create severe profits.
Buyers Are Forced Indoors
Most buyers enjoy doing their buying at restaurants on the sand or in ridiculously overpriced posh hotels. The Carlton Hotel Terrace and the Majestic Hotel Patio are two cant-miss hot spots, where you’re sure to run into an A-list buyer with deep pockets. However, the rain changes all of that. Since nobody likes getting wet, buyers are actually driven indoors. The result is that there’s quite a bit of foot traffic here at the Marche du Film (aka The Cannes Film Market), which means that more film sellers are getting more eyes on their product.
Buyers Are In Cannes For Shorter Periods of Time
I’m not going to sit here in my booth and try to convince you that buyers are shortening their trips due to rain. The truth is the media conglomerates that fund the buyers are giving them smaller budgets; hence they have less time in Cannes. The good news is, a) since buyers have to get their work done in a shorter period of time, (usually the opening Wednesday to the following Tuesday, if not earlier), and b) since rain is keeping them indoors, they will have little else to do, but buy, buy, buy!
Less Fanfare Creates More Sales
While the world’s most annoying paparazzi’s and hardcore fans will endure the rain to get a glimpse of their favorite star on the red carpet (the original red carpet that coined the term), the casual fan won’t. Thus, the crowds here are lighter, which means there are few distractions that would take the buyers away from what they were sent here to accomplish.
Over the years, I’ve witnessed several opulent and extravagant premieres. For example, one year George Lucas arrived by ship – and not just any ship – but by the Queen Elizabeth. If that wasn’t enough, Lucas then had an army of Storm Troopers lining both sides of the red carpet, as an orchestra played the Star Wars theme upon his arrival. Another time, U2 played an impromptu mini concert at the top of the red-carpet stairs, right before the screening of their concert film/documentary. In both cases, the hoopla piqued everyone’s interest, (including mine), and proved to be a perfect deterrent to actually working. However, this year, it looks like Mother Nature is going to limit the social distractions, which should help sales.
But Wait, Here Comes The Sun!
Just as I’m wrapping up this report, the sun broke out for a few glorious moments. But worry not filmmakers, the weatherman promises umbrellas sales may rival film sales this week.
Okay people, that wraps up my fist ever “Going Bionic Special Report.” Keep a look out for these special editions over the next few days, as I’ll keep giving you up-to-date information on happenings at the planet’s most substantial film festival. I Thank you for lending me your eyes, and I look forward to borrowing them again when I shoot out my next special report! I can be followed on Twitter @Lonelyseal.
Posted on May 16, 2013 in Features, Going Bionic by Hammad Zaidi
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