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January 1996, Week 4


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Dennis Doros <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 22 Jan 1996 10:35:37 -0500
text/plain (36 lines)
Dear Jeremy,
I have to say that there is legitimate gripes about the cost of rentals these
days. However, I have found that many professors do not understand our
economics either. I will not talk for Films Inc since I don't know their
situation, but I can try to explain the small independent distribution
companies rational.
Try to imagine that every three months, you take out your personal check book
and write one for $50,000 to $100,000 (16mm negatives cost $6,000 to $8,000
alone and there are maybe 100 customers out there to rent any one film) to
show a film and hope the critics will like it and the audiences will come.
That's exactly what we do everytime since our sole source of income is
Milestone. These days, it's a very difficult time for foreign films with
theaters cutting back to the mainstream, colleges showing everything on video
and Blockbuster ignoring us completely. And then of course, 50% of anything
we make goes (happily) back to the producer or legal owners of the film. Yes,
there are many companies who provide a valuable service by providing public
domain films to the public. Of course, the filmmaker doesn't see a penny and
the prints are questionable.
My best solution for you and others in your situtation is to deal with the
distributors who are willing to understand your financial constraints and
will do our best to work with you. There are many of us in distribution
because we love and adore film and could make easier livings selling widgets.
Dennis Doros
Milestone Film & Video
275 West 96th Street, suite 28C
New York, NY 10025
Phone: (212) 865-7449
Fax: (212) 222-8952
Email: [log in to unmask]
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