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New approaches for greater diversity of cinema in Europe? Analyses of experiments launched in the context of the preparatory action "Circulation of European films in the digital era" (European Commission, MEDIA programme)

Authors:
  • CNRS & HEC Paris

Abstract and Figures

Digital technology, the new forms of distribution and consumption of works, piracy, increasing saturation of screens, the arrival of new economic players - these are some of the elements that are transforming the cinema landscape. The European Parliament has launched a programme of experiments to transform these threats into opportunities, with a view to improving the circulation of films in Europe. These experiments, conducted by several players in the European film industry, gave rise to several film releases using innovative sequences of distribution windows, and with a multi-territorial approach. While the number of spontaneous experiments has increased over recent years, particularly in the United States and the United Kingdom, and concerning simultaneous theatrical and VOD releases (Day-and-Date), VOD previews (ultra-VOD) or exclusive VOD releases (Direct-to-VOD), the experiments launched by the European Parliament also strove to include a multi-territorial dimension so as to encourage the simultaneous release of films in several European countries.
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1
NEW APPROACHES FOR GREATER DIVERSITY
OF CINEMA IN EUROPE?
ANALYSES OF EXPERIMENTS LAUNCHED IN THE CONTEXT
"CIRCULATION OF FILMS IN THE DIGITAL ERA"
(EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND EUROPEAN COMMISSION)
PREPARATORY ACTION - WAVES 1 & 2
THOMAS PARIS
JUNE 2015
30 JUIN 2015
1 PREPARATORY ACTION PARTICIPANTS:
IFFR LIVE coordinated by the International Film Festival Rotterdam
SPIDE coordinated by L’ARP, Société des Auteurs-Réalisateurs-Producteurs.
STREAMS DAY-AND-DATE coordinated by EuroVOD
2
New approaches for greater diversity of cinema in Europe?
Analyses of experiments launched in the context of the preparatory action1
"Circulation of films in the digital era"
(European Parliament and European Commission)
Thomas Paris
1
in collaboration with Lucie Girre, Asmit Jain and Aurélia Porret
1
CNRS/HEC Paris
3
I. New film distribution channels: complementarity or cannibalism? ............................................... 6
1.1. Limited film circulation and access to exposure ..................................................................... 8
1.2. Parameters for differentiating between types of consumption ........................................... 13
1.3. Complementarity in the creation economy: an economy of abundance ............................. 16
1.4. Complementarity in promotion ............................................................................................ 21
1.5. Conclusion ............................................................................................................................. 25
2. Experiments ................................................................................................................................... 27
3. Brief description of film types based on their "potential" ............................................................ 30
4. Film accessibility ............................................................................................................................ 32
5. Additional audience for films released as D&D or Ultra-VOD ....................................................... 34
6. Geography and film audience ....................................................................................................... 38
7. e-Cinema releases ......................................................................................................................... 44
8. The IFFR Live Festival ..................................................................................................................... 49
9. General conclusion ........................................................................................................................ 50
4
Introduction
Digital technology, new forms of film distribution and consumption, piracy, the growing
saturation of screens and the arrival of new economic players are some of the factors which
are transforming the world of cinema. The European Parliament has launched a Preparatory
Action, "Circulation of European Films in the Digital Era,” a series of experiments to turn
these threats into opportunities, with the aim of improving the circulation of films in Europe.
A first initiative (voted on 26th of October, 2011), then a second, aimed to experiment with
new film distribution channels in Europe through simultaneous or quasi-simultaneous
releases in several territories. The goal was to learn and understand - this is the meaning of
an 'experiment' - with no bias other than that of seeing the new film distribution channels,
whatever risks they may involve, as a potential source of opportunities.
These experiments, led by several different players in the European film industry, resulted in
several film releases using innovative types of distribution, with a multi-country dynamic.
While there have been more and more spontaneous experiments over recent years (mainly
in the United States and in the United Kingdom) on simultaneous cinema theatre-VOD (Day-
and-Date) releases, VOD pre-releases (ultra-VOD), or exclusively VOD releases (Direct-to-
VOD), experimentation driven by the European Parliament has endeavoured to include the
multi-territorial dimension, to encourage the simultaneous release of films in several
European countries.
Table 1: projects launched in the context of preparatory action 2
Projects
Companies and organisations
IFFR LIVE
IFFR (f), Distrify (ag; dd), Doc & Film (is), Fortissimo (is), Filmin (ag; dd), Trustnordisk (is).
SPIDE
L’ARP (po), Autlook (is), BIM Distribuzione (d), Celluloïd (is), Europa Distribution (op), Elle Driver
(is), Fandango (is), FilmoTV (dd), IPEDA (op), Kinology (is), Premium Films (is), Protagonist (is),
Under the Milky Way (ag.), Versatile (is), Vertigo (d), Wide (is), Wild Bunch (is), Wild Bunch
Distribution (d), Wild Side Vidéo (ag; d), Wild Bunch Germany (d), associate partner: The Film
Agency (ma).
STREAMS
DAY-AND-DATE
EuroVod (po), Memento Films International (is), Doc & Film International (is), The Match Factory
(is).
ag. : VOD aggregator, d: distributor, dd: digital distributor, f: festival,
is: international sales, ma: marketing agency, po: professional organization
5
These experiments have led to the distribution of 23 films to date, in 22 European countries,
totalling 112 releases, 39 of them on a Day-and Date (D&D) or Ultra-VOD basis and 21 on a
Direct-to-VOD or e-cinema basis.
Figure 1: the experiments in practice
The aim of this independent report is to spark a discussion, based on the results of these
experiments, on the potential benefits of these new distribution channels for European films
in the digital era, in particular in terms of the complementarity of the media, the accessibility
of films to audiences and of audiences to films.
6
I. New film distribution channels: complementarity or cannibalism?
In 2015, the cinema will be celebrating its 120th birthday on 28 December, exactly 120 years
after the Lumière brothers offered spectators the opportunity to pay for an admission ticket
to see a film projected on the big screen. This date, which is considered the creation of
cinema, also saw the birth of its economic model. This model has lasted and has gained
momentum over time, to the extent that collective distribution forms part of the very nature
of the cinematographic opus.
Another less familiar date is equally important in the economic history of the cinema. On 17
January 1984, the Supreme Court of the United States pronounced its ruling in Sony vs
Universal, dubbed the "Betamax case": recording television programmes did not constitute
an infringement of copyright. This paved the way for the development of VHS equipment
use, and a few years later, video cassette sales would account for a large proportion of the
large studios' income.
The first date marks the emergence of the economic model consubstantial to the cinema.
The second was not a remarkable date in itself, but rather because it paved the way for the
demonstration of complementarity among different types of film consumption. Although
Universal and the other leaders feared that the VHS would damage their revenues by
cannibalising film theatres, what happened next showed them that the two types of
consumption could coexist. It showed that their initial fears were unfounded because videos
themselves soon generated more income than cinema theatres.
It would be dangerous to try and extrapolate this story to the current context: the
emergence and development of electronic distribution in its different formats (VOD,
Day&Date, Direct-to-VOD, UltraVOD, SVOD, eCinema) is considerably different.
7
Glossary
VOD: electronic distribution of a film, in a window of operation different
from theatre exhibition, within the context of media chronology.
EST: permanent sale of a film in electronic format.
Day&Date: simultaneous distribution of a film in theatres and in electronic
format.
Ultra VOD: distribution of a film in electronic format before it is shown in
theatres.
Direct-to-VOD: exploitation of a film directly in electronic format (without
prior distribution in theatres).
eCinema: the exploitation of a film directly in electronic format, used for
films which have promotion and visibility of the same magnitude as a theatre
release.
SVOD: subscription to an offering of films in electronic format.
The lesson here is that different types of film consumption are not in head-to-head
competition with one another. The arrival of a new distribution channel may unsettle the
existing economic balances, but it will not necessarily wholly replace an existing one. What
we intend to highlight here are the determining factors in this balance between
substitutability and complementarity.
There are three determining factors: the complementarity of distribution channels is defined
based on parameters of differentiation, in the user experience and types of consumption; it
is also defined from the point of view of the rights holder, where films more or less undergo
"switching" (in the sense of railway points); it is finally defined around complementarity in
terms of promotion. We will discuss each of these elements in turn. First some background,
which will enable us to better understand the challenges surrounding these questions of
complementarity. These elements are drawn from the previous report
2
.
2
"New approaches for greater diversity of cinema in Europe?" Analyses of experiments launched in the context
of the preparatory action "Circulation of European films in the digital era", Thomas Paris, 2014.
8
1.1. Limited film circulation and access to exposure
The market for films faces two underlying trends which raise questions as to its evolution.
These trends originate in two long-term processes, globalisation and the implementation of
digital technologies, which have impacts on access to screens for films and changes in
consumption habits.
Globalisation in cinema leads to the coexistence of two economies in the different countries:
on one hand a "global" cinema, which is essentially Hollywood-based and derives its
revenues from multi-national releases backed by massive advertising campaigns; on the
other hand films that are confined to their national markets, with comparatively minuscule
resources. This coexistence leads to an inherently unequal competition for access to screens
and promotional visibility.
National box-office receipts, in countries that still have a film industry, are thus divided
between American blockbusters, present in all countries, and local films, often restricted to a
domestic market. We should also mention art-house films, which have an international
audience: due to their limited potential at a national level, these films face difficulties in
obtaining access to theatres in all of the countries where they are distributed.
Table 2: Average national market share, in terms of admissions, in the European Union, in 2012 (AEO data)
American films (or with an American partner)
63.1%
Non-national European films
12.5 %
Table 3: degree of concentration of admissions for American and European films
Share of European
admissions in a single
country
Share of European
admissions in three
countries3
American films
(or with an American
partner)
26.65 %
56.37 %
European films
(no American partner)
69.33 %
85.78 %
According to Lumière's data
Globalisation thus leads to the creation of a dual economy, in which European films enjoy only
limited circulation.
3
Market share in top three countries, in terms of admissions.
9
Added to this is the concentration of film showings (number of screens per film) and the
growing increase in the number of films distributed, which combine to limit the possibilities
of screening for a large number of films, mainly those in the second category.
The saturation of cinema screens is determined by infrastructure limitations (the theoretical
maximum potential for exploitation of a film depends on the total number of screenings
offered in a given zone), but above all by programming habits, which involve unity of
programming of one film per week on one screen
4
, and programming with a certain number
of prints over several weeks. Once films which enjoy widespread exposure have been
programmed, little room remains for the others.
The number of films on exclusive first release is increasing, with a rise for example from 400
to over 600 in France between 1996 and 2013, or 600 to 650 in the UK between 2007 and
2012. This increase leads to greater pressure on theatres, which in turn makes it difficult for
some films to obtain access to adequate exposure. This causes a decreased life cycle for
films
5
, and a decrease in the number of screens available for less visible films. In the UK, 35%
to 40% of films distributed between 2007 and 2012 had fewer than 10 prints in circulation.
In France, non-national European films were screened in 60 to 110 theatres on average
between 2003 and 2012.
In general, the offering accessible for an individual depends, in qualitative terms, on their
country of residence. The inhabitant of a "small" country will have access to a much more
restricted choice of films than the inhabitant of a more populated country, even when the
country offers a large number of films per inhabitant.
4
This habit has been partly called into question by the development of multiprogramming which enables some films to
share a screen while others, with greater potential, can be programmed on several screens in a multi-screen complex.
5
"Durée de vie des films en salles", CNC, July 2008
10
Table 4: Number of exclusive first releases in a few European territories.
Inhabitants (M)
Films distributed as
exclusive first
releases (2012)
Germany
83
551
UK
(+ Eire)
67
647
France
66
615
Italy
61
363
Spain
47
472
Romania
22
186
Netherlands
17
406
Portugal
11
2646
Sweden
10
217
Denmark
6
231
It depends even more strongly where they live, because for all of these countries the
available offering is linked to the size of the local markets. 14% of the European population
has no cinema within 30 minutes of home (the figure is as high as 37% in Romania)
7
.
The offering available falls off very sharply between the capital and other large cities, as the
following examples show.
Figure2: films distributed in Spain in 2012
8
6
2010 figures
7
11 Attentional, Headway International and Harris Interactive (2014).
8
total number of films, exclusive first releases and others. Source: Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte. Instituto de
Cinematografía y de las Artes Audiovisuales. Estadística de Cinematografía: Producción, Exhibición, Distribución y Fomento.
563
370
296
626
798
0100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900
Andalucía
Aragón
Asturias, Principado de
Comunitat Valenciana
Madrid, Comunidad de
11
Figure 3: number of films distributed in France in 2012
9
Figure 4: number of films distributed in Italy in 2013
10
On a European scale, the variation in the accessible offering from one area to another works
mainly to the detriment of third-country films (neither national nor American) and domestic
films. In the territories of the previous sample the number of films distributed varies in the
ratio of 1 to 3 from one territory to another, but for American films the ratio is only 1 to 2. It
is true that the number of domestic films varies from 10 to 1, but this is linked to differences
in national production potential.
9
Exclusive first releases. CNC data.
10
Exclusive first release or subsequent release. Source: Cinetel.
612
565
580
571
507
570
550
509
453
0100 200 300 400 500 600 700
Paris
Banlieue
G.R.P.
Bordeaux
Lille
Lyon
Marseille
Strasbourg
Nancy
636
656
483
545
405
522
510
519
430
356
0100 200 300 400 500 600 700
Rome
Milan
Naples
Turin
Palerme
Gênes
Bologne
Florence
Bari
Catane
12
Figure 5: number of films distributed in 2012.
by nationality, in a few European countries
11
These figures highlight a structural obstacle to the distribution in theatres of certain films,
including European films for which the ability to circulate from one territory to another is
limited by effective distribution capacity. This gives European cinema-goers the impression
that their choice is curtailed. A recent study by the European Commission recently showed
that 30 % of the people questioned and who were free down-loaders used the Internet
because many of the films they wanted to see were simply not available in their country
12
.
These figures should be compared with those for production. 1,299 films were produced in
the European Union in 2012
13
, and 200 American films were distributed there.
11
Sources: FFA, BFI, CNC, Ministero dei beni e delle attivita' culturali e del turismo, ICAA, CNC (Romania), Nederlands Film
Fonds, ICA, Swedish Film Institute, Danish Film Institute.
12
Attentional, Headway International, Harris Interactive (2014). "A profile of current and future audiovisual audience",
study for the European Commission.
13
Source: FOCUS 2013.
13
Table 5: capacity for film distribution in Europe
Available films
(annual European production + American films distributed)
1,500
Distribution capacity
(maximum number of films distributed in European cities)
650
Distribution capacity for third-country films
(after deduction of American films and domestic films)
290
While the debate on the cultural obstacles to the international circulation of films is outside
the scope of this paper, we can safely say that these obstacles are very strong and that,
simply because more films are being produced, they affect a growing number of films.
1.2. Parameters for differentiating between types of consumption
The complementary nature of different film distribution channels is due to both
differentiation of the user experience and consumer" segmentation. VHS did not kill the
cinema because consumers see them as very different. The collective dimension of theatres
is often seen as an inherent quality of the cinema. This is one factor in differentiation, but it
is not the only one. Video comes out ahead on other points, which explains how theatres
and video can coexist. While theatres offer a higher-quality show, consuming films at home
is more flexible and does away with a whole series of logistical issues, in particular for
families with children. Video did not kill the theatre because they are very different types of
distribution, so neither one can fully eclipse the other. Some viewers did stop going to see
films in theatres because videos offered them a solution which was a better overall fit. On
the other hand, people who never went to the cinema started watching films at home. And
others, doubtless the majority, split their film consumption between theatres and home,
depending on the occasion and the film in question.
More generally, the different types of film consumption highlight a series of differentiation
variables.
14
Table 6: differentiation parameters for film distribution channels
Variables
Possible values
Place of consumption
Theatre / Home / On-the-go
Consumer unit
Individual / Family / Collective
Projection quality
Screen size, sound system
Consumption temporality
Linear / non linear
Breadth of offer
Broad or not, legally restricted or not
Payment
Subscription / unit / third party
Price
Some of these variables are inherent to the distribution channel, others are conventional,
and others are legal. The restriction of the offer calls to mind the mechanisms of media
chronology: this variable, imposed by legal systems or professional agreements, affects the
type of films that each distribution channel can offer at a given time. A conventional variable
is, for example, the fact that cinema has historically been paid for by the unit. The invention
of unlimited passes has called into question the unicity of this model. Cinema financed by a
third party - advertising for example - does not currently exist, but could be developed in the
future.
These different variables enable us to examine the difference between the different types of
film consumption.
Table 7: characterisation of film distribution channels
Place
Quality
Temporality
Breadth of offer
Restrictions
Payment
Theatre
Theatre
Maximum
Linear
Limited
None
Unit14
Free TV
Home
Average
Linear
Limited
> x1 month
Third party15
Fee-paying TV
Home
Average
Linear
Limited
> x2 month
Subscription
Video
Home
Average
Delinearized
High
> x3 month
Unit
VOD
Home
Average
Delinearized
Unlimited
> x3 month
Unit
SVOD
Home
Average
Delinearized
High
> x4 month
Subscription
Piracy
Home
Average
Delinearized
Unlimited
None
Third party
14
payment by subscription is possible but is not compulsory.
15
for public TV, the licence fee can be considered a form of payment by a third party (the contributor).
15
This table highlights several phenomena. First, it allows us to grasp the drop in the physical
video market: this distribution channel is completely dominated by VOD, i.e. it has qualities
which are lower or equal on each variable. The offering is narrower because it is dependent
on other users, access to films does not require two trips (to go get it and return it.)
If we leave aside the criterion of legality, which is not significant for all users, we can also
clearly see why piracy is an important threat to all fee-paying distribution channels, with the
possible exception of theatres, which offer a higher quality experience.
Finally, we can see more generally why different distribution channels are not in direct
competition with one another, and have given rise, over time, to a superimposition of
distribution channels instead of a substitution.
Figure 6: changes in expenditure on different distribution channels for films in France (in constant €M)
according to CNC data
These differences in the nature of user experience offered by each distribution channel
generate complementarity between the different distribution channels.
This complementarity does, however, involve the transfer of consumption from one channel
to another. Establishing a balance between different distribution channels raises the issue of
the economic viability of the different channels as well as specialisation by film categories.
These two questions can only find their answers in experience.
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
1950
1953
1956
1959
1962
1965
1968
1971
1974
1977
1980
1983
1986
1989
1992
1995
1998
2001
2004
2007
2010
dépenses VOD en M 2012
dépenses vidéo physiques en M 2012
abonnements TV en M 2012
recettes guichets en M 2012
VOD spending in €M (2012)
DVD/BluRay spending in €M (2012)
TV Subscription spending in €M (2012)
Box Office Revenues in €M (2012)
16
1.3. Complementarity in the creation economy: an economy of abundance
The complementarity of distribution channels can be examined from another angle, the
perspective of the economics of creation. The creation economy has several particularities
16
.
Structurally, it is an economy of abundance and selectivity. Many projects are put forward,
some of which are developed by established organisations. Of the projects that are
launched, only a limited few enjoy a certain level of visibility and distribution, and only some
of those will have a large audience. This is the principle of superstars or
17
long tail
economics
18
. This successive funnel structure can be found in publishing, music, perfume,
video games, and more generally in all creative industries. Some of these sectors have no
difficulty in outsourcing the risks of over-abundance: in publishing, huge numbers of aspiring
writers produce manuscripts, which are sent to publishing houses. This type of procedure is
based on the intrinsic uncertainty involved in creative activities - it is impossible to predict
the success of a product - which is amplified by the difficulty of forming an idea of the
quality of a product before it is complete. The classical creation economy is based on the fact
that each step in the chain involves a high level of selection from contributors to the value
chain, who serve as gatekeepers: an editor makes a choice from among many manuscripts, a
bookseller selects those he wants to highlight from the many books received, the media
choose those they will discuss later from among the many books sold by booksellers. It is
this process of successive selection, ultimately completed by consumers, which builds the
value of works.
The quasi-necessity of launching a large number of projects must take the structural
characteristics of each sector into account. In cinema, production costs make it virtually
impossible to outsource this abundance. The sector thus finances huge numbers of projects.
However the institutional acceptance of "abandoning" projects during the process, which is
inherent to certain creative sectors, comes into conflict with the sums invested. While
publishing incorporates the fact that manuscripts may never see the light of day, or that
16
Creative industries: Contracts between art and commerce. Richard E. Caves. Harvard University Press. 2000.
17
The Economics of Superstars. Sherwin Rosen. The American Economic Review, Vol. 71, No. 5. (Dec., 1981), pp.
845-858.
18
The long tail: Why the future of business is selling less of more. Chris Anderson. Hyperion. 2006.
17
published books may not have any visibility in the media or in stores, the levels of
investment required for a film make this situation unacceptable. The cinema industry must
therefore take this paradoxical situation in stride: on the one hand, the normality of the fact
that different players involved in the chain should make a selection, starting with
distributors and exhibitors; and on the other, the challenge of giving every film a chance, in
view of the sums invested
19
. Put another way, exhibitors' work on programming, and
upstream, the work of distributors, involve making choices which may lead to the
inaccessibility of certain films in the theatre, despite the fact that they cost large sums of
money.
The "switching" of films to distribution in theatres, VOD or even on television, is a solution to
this dual constraint. Although it is difficult to get an idea of the potential of films based on a
screenplay or a script, it is much easier once they are finished and they have begun to be
shown. The decision to market a film through an alternative channel may therefore either
require arbitration, for rights holders, given the estimated potential of the film, or be a
solution for these same rights holders with a film which would not have access - or only very
limited access - to theatres.
When arbitration is required, two factors enter into consideration: the recognition that
comes from being screened in theatres and the comparative profitability of the different
distribution channels. Let us examine the latter. To properly separate these two factors, one
must exclude the "sum of investment in promotion" variable from the analysis, by
considering that it will have the same impact for a cinema release or for digital distribution
20
.
Economic arbitration is then based on the takings alone. For theatre exhibition, the share
which goes to distributors is the sales price including tax, from which the taxes and the share
kept by the exhibitors are deducted. In France, for example, the average net remuneration
for distributors was 38% of the ticket price in 2010.
21
. For digital exploitation, the
distributor's share is calculated based on a contractual agreement, generally around 70% to
80%.
19
added to this challenge is the issue of diversity, which suggests that the public should have access to a varied
offering.
20
This is an initial approximation, insofar as the theatre plays an important role as an opinion leader
21
"Mission sur la transparence de la filière cinématographique - La relation entre le producteur et ses
mandataires", Michel Gomez, report, September 2011.
18
Theatre showings
Digital exploitation
Sale price incl. tax
€6.50
€8-12
Distributors' share excl.
tax
€2.50
€5-8
The distributor's revenues may therefore be double or triple the revenues for theatre
exhibition given the current market. This translates into a breakeven point differential which
grows quickly as a function of the fixed costs invested in purchase of rights (MG) and
promotion (P&A).
Figure 7: breakeven point for theatre exhibition and e-cinema as function of fixed costs
Today, by choosing direct economic profitability as the sole criterion, the conditions of
arbitration favour direct exploitation through VOD, which can create pressure on alternative
types of exploitation, and which looks likely to increase with this form of exploitation
becoming standard. While arbitration of this kind is currently often biased by the exclusive
nature of cinema release, this will doubtless change over time: as it becomes more common,
not screening a film in theatres will create less stigma.
Furthermore, consumers today are still relatively unused to e-cinema, which is the direct
release of films to VOD accompanied by a strong advertising campaign, which makes
marketing investment more risky. Distributors define the level of expenditure on a release
based on the expected audience. Direct digital exploitation is therefore a vicious circle: a
0
100 000
200 000
300 000
400 000
500 000
600 000
700 000
800 000
900 000
0,1 0,2 0,3 0,4 0,5 0,6 0,7 0,8 0,9 1 1,1 1,2 1,3 1,4 1,5 1,6 1,7 1,8 1,9 2
Admissions
Fixed costs (MG + P&A), in k
point mort salles point mort numérique
Breakeven point
(Theaters)
Breakeven point
(Digital)
19
limited estimated potential leads to limited expenditure, with sales to a limited audience.
There is another dimension to take into consideration in this vicious circle, which is due to
the nature of culture itself. For consumers, the value of a production is linked to a network
effect: it depends on the value that others give to it. This implies that a film with an audience
which is considered small will lose its attraction to consumers. Therefore, the perception of a
film exhibited through e-cinema as being marginal will partly be confirmed by the facts.
When consumers feel that an e-cinema film could be seen by a large audience, it might gain
value as a result. If e-cinema takes hold, it will make its reputation and may be seen by
consumers as a distribution channel like any other, no longer just for second-rate films. The
recognition of TV series as productions in their own right, although they are only broadcast
on television, has demonstrated this effect.
Nevertheless, de facto specialisation by type of production may be expected. This is already
partly under way: linear television has tended, for the past few years, to prioritise special
events programmes, and the cinema offering seems to be focused on making Hollywood
"sequel and children's films. In 2014, the 30 top films at the French box office included 8
French family comedies, 8 sequels of Hollywood franchises and 4 animated films. On the
scale of the European Union, the top 20 films at the box office for 2014 included 9 sequels.
This specialisation results from both the actual economic choices made by distributors and
choices made by default when their films do not have access to satisfactory distribution in
theatres. The analysis of Day&Date releases (hereinafter D&D) in the United Kingdom for the
past several years highlights this kind of specialisation: this distribution channel is used for
specific types of film.
The United Kingdom has experimented with D&D releases since the middle of the 2010s,
with the trend taking off starting in 2013. We have identified 205 releases of this kind.
20
Table 8: number of D&D releases identified in the United Kingdom
Analysis of the list of films concerned reveals several trends which demonstrate that this
type of release has started to focus on certain types of film:
- documentaries account for 28% of these releases (up from 20% in the first
years);
- films shown at festivals: 48% on average,
- European films (non-UK): 43% on average.
Table 9: characteristics of D&D releases in the United Kingdom
Conversely, American films and comedies were initially released this way (respectively 21%
and 21% of releases), but now only account for a negligible share (5% and 5%) of releases.
D&D is gradually being consolidated as a distribution channel for non-national European and
art-house films, with a significant share of documentaries.
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
av. 2012 2012 2013 2014 2015 (est.)
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
av. 2012 2012 2013 2014 2015 (T1)
documentaires
comédies
films européens hors
UK
films US
films de festival
Documentaries
Comedies
European film (non-UK)
Films shown at festivals
documentaries
comedies
European films (non-UK)
US films
Films shown at festivals
21
The following points should be noted. The different distribution channels appear to be
complementary in terms of the cinema economy. Each film, which is a unique creation, has
its own economics: its cost, its estimated potential, and the extent of its access to theatre
screenings could lead its distributor to opt for an alternative distribution channel when faced
with a more or less restricted choice: directly to electronic format (e-cinema or Direct-to-
VOD) or a simultaneous theatre and VOD release (D&D). The economic equation of direct
revenues is an aspect of this choice: it is not the only one, in particular due to the
recognition that distribution in theatres still confers today, and will no doubt continue to
confer in the years to come. When the choice of a simultaneous release is made, it is
intended to maximise the audience, due to limited access to theatres. Complementarity is in
this case based on a third factor, which we will address in the next part.
1.4. Complementarity in promotion
A third type of complementarity among distribution channels may arise due to the
superimposition of the two geographies in which films evolve: a geography of distribution
and a geography of promotion.
The geography of in-theatre film distribution is discrete, in the mathematical sense, meaning
that it comprises a sum of areas which do not cover an entire territory. Rights are acquired
on a national level: an operator has the prerogative to market the film in theatres to the
entire population of a country. But the effective coverage provided by the operator depends
on both the locations of theatres and the actual placement of the film. In the best scenario,
the operator will be able to offer the films to people living in all of the country's cinema
theatre catchment areas.
The geography of promotion is different. It comprises central promotion, which goes
through the opinion leaders which reach the entire country (TV, radio, press, Internet, and to
a lesser extent, billboards). Most promotional expenditures are made on a national level,
more or less homogeneously, independent of the places where the films are actually
screened. In addition to central promotion, which is managed by the national rights holders,
local promotion is handled by the theatres themselves; it is at best of very limited scope. In
22
most countries, promotion mainly occurs at a national level. There is therefore a disconnect
between the geography of how films are promoted and how they are actually distributed.
Promotional efforts, in terms of space purchases, are defined on the basis of the number of
distribution locations. Reduced promotional costs do not lead to better targeting of
promotional efforts, but simply to a reduced effort nationwide. Therefore the
proportionality of promotional expenditure as a function of the number of screens does not
exist at the local level. A low number of screens simply means a proportionately low
marketing effort nationwide, including in areas where the film is not shown at all.
At theatre level, the visibility of a film generated by the distributor's promotion is not
proportional to the sums invested. There is a critical mass effect.
In France, for example, 42% of urban areas have theatres
22
. The sums invested in space
purchases vary based on the number of prints.
Figure 8: purchases of space (in €M), as a function of the number of prints
23
22
"La géographie du cinéma", CNC files, no.331, September 2014.
23
"Les coûts de distribution des films français en 2013", CNC, March 2015.
0
5
10
15
20
25
<10 10-50 50-100 100-200 200-400 >400
Purchases of space in M
Number of prints
23
Figure 9: relative impact of 1 Euro invested in promotion, as a function of the number of prints
24
This curve shows that an individual located in an urban area where the film is exhibited will
be 8 times more likely to be exposed to promotion surrounding the film if 400 prints are
released, than if 50 to 100 prints are released.
The dissociation between distribution, which is discrete, and promotion, which is
homogeneous, leads to squeezed visibility for films distributed on a limited number of
screens. To be visible, these theatres' operators must generate their own promotion.
Exhibitors may, depending on the films they show, settle for central promotion or develop
local promotional efforts.
This creates a third form of complementarity, for theatres which do not enjoy nationwide
promotion for a given film. Joint VOD distribution may involve an extra promotional effort
which may increase the visibility of this film. As VOD distribution is homogeneous (reaching
an entire country and not just certain areas), the potential audience covers the entire
country. A high level of promotion may therefore mean high visibility for the films, and extra
audiences in the theatres which show them.
The benefit for theatres of VOD distribution is therefore based on a balance between the
effects of transferring from theatre spectators to VOD viewers, and the heightened visibility
that promotion surrounding VOD distribution can provide.
24
This curve is based on an estimate of the population exposed to a film as a function of the number of prints
(20% of the population for at least 10 prints and 42% for more than 400).
0,00
0,05
0,10
0,15
0,20
0,25
0,30
0,35
0,40
0,45
<10 10-50 50-100 100-200 200-400 >400
Effectiveness of promotion
Number of prints
24
Let us consider a film which is being shown in a limited number of theatres.
S is the number of spectators watching the film in a given theatre, without
VOD distribution
P is the film's promotional budget in the absence of VOD distribution; ∆P is the
extra promotional effort created by VOD distribution
1S is the number of spectators who choose to see the film on VOD instead of in
the theatre, in the given catchment area
2S is the number of extra spectators who are brought by the extra promotional
effort to the theatre in question.
=
with k1<=1
This reflects the fact that the extra promotional effort creates a surplus of
spectators which is less than proportional: one may consider that the film's initial
spectators are less sensitive to promotion, because they make an effort to
find out about it themselves.
 
k2 <=1 is the proportion of the film's spectators who are likely to switch to VOD.
is the promotional effort which would mean that the entire theatre audience is
informed of the VOD distribution.
For a theatre, the variation in the number of spectators resulting from VOD
distribution is given by:
    
Whether the end result is positive or negative is unknown, and depends on the way
in which the transfer of spectators to VOD and the increase in the number of
theatre spectators due to the heightened visibility from VOD distribution interact. A
VOD release with small-scale promotion would take away a few spectators from
the theatre, but more promotion would bring new ones. The curve showing the
growth of theatre audiences as a function of investment in promotion as a result of
VOD distribution could therefore have the following shape:
25
This hypothetical curve in no way reflects observed behaviour. The key to its real
shape is based on the behaviour of k1 and K2
25
. It also depends on the type of film,
on which depend the extent of transfer to VOD (k2) and the transformation of the
informed public into spectators (k1).
1.5. Conclusion
This section aimed to examine the complementarity between different film distribution
channels. We have shown that this question was not reduced to the mechanical effects of
transfer of spectators (cannibalisation), but involved different components, the aggregation
of which led to uncertain results. Although it is evident that electronic distribution will take
away some spectators from theatres, the weight and the effect of this is much less clear.
Distributors can find a way forward because VOD distribution offers them a way to make the
most out of films which have little room in theatres, because the revenues lost from theatre
distribution can be compensated for by VOD distribution.
As for theatres, at first glance they are the link most threatened by these new forms of
exploitation, and it is important to avoid putting their finances in jeopardy. It is without a
doubt art-house theatres which are the most vulnerable. Although their spectators may be
less likely to switch to VOD, the films they distribute are the most likely be released
simultaneously on VOD. Even a marginal loss of spectators may have a very detrimental
25
As a first approach, k1 and k2 may be considered as constants. In reality, they are doubtless constant when
P is low, but they then change: this reflects the fact that the number of potential spectators is not infinite.
26
effect for theatres with fragile finances. However, analysis indicates that the overall effect is
not necessarily negative: a loss of spectators due to VOD release may be counteracted by an
increase in visibility. The respective weighting of these two effects is unknown, and would
benefit from being tested. It also depends, as do the other parameters, on the types of film
in question.
27
2. Experiments
Experiments led within the context of Preparatory Actions 1 and 2 involved 23 films, which
were released in 22 European countries.
Countries involved in the experiment
Austria, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Czech
Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland,
Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland,
Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and
the United Kingdom.
These releases involved 112 D&D or Ultra-VOD releases, and 21 Direct-to-VOD or e-cinema
releases. 5 films from the Preparatory Action 2 were presented at the Rotterdam
International Film Festival, before their commercial exploitation. These films were presented
in 40 cinemas in 9 countries: Bosnia-Herzegovina, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands,
Poland, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain and the United Kingdom.
28
Table 10: films involved in the experiment
Film
D&D
releases26
Direct-to-
VOD
releases
e-cinema
releases
Festival
theatre +
VOD
distributions
Project
Viramundo
Pierre-Yves Borgeaud, 2013
(F/Switzerland)
10
TIDE
For those in peril
Paul Wright, 2013 (UK)
5
TIDE
Magnifica presenza
Ferzan Özpetek, 2012 (I)
4
TIDE
After the Night
Basil Da Cunha, 2013
(Switzerland/Portugal)
4
TIDE
The Spirit of 45
Ken Loach, 2013 (UK)
4
1
Speed Bunch
Jimmy P.
Arnaud Desplechin, 2013 (F)
2
1
Speed Bunch
Mademoiselle C.
Fabien Constant, 2013 (F)
2
1
Speed Bunch
Welcome to New York
Abel Ferrara, 2014 (F/USA)
5
Speed Bunch
Io sono Li
Andrea Segre, 2011 (I)
5
EDAD
Bastards
Claire Denis, 2013 (F)
4
EDAD
Goodbye to Language
Jean-Luc Godard, 2014
(F/Switzerland)
3
1
Spide
Department Q : The
Keeper of lost cause
Mikkel Norgaard, 2013 (D,G,S)
1
2
Spide
Master of the Universe
Marc Bauder, 2013 (G, A)
5
Spide
White Shadow
Noaz Deshe, 2013 (Tanzania, G, I)
6
Spide
Eat your bones
Jean-Charles Hue, 2014 (F)
7
Spide
Under the Rainbow
Agnès Jaoui, 2013 (F)
4
Streams D&D
Like an open Sky
Mariana Otero, 2013 (F)
2
Streams D&D
Love Battles
Jacques Doillon, 2013 (F)
3
Streams D&D
Atlantic
Jan Willen van Ewijk, 2014
(NL/Bel/G/Morocco)
9
IFFR Live
Erbarme Dich - Matthäus
Passion Stories
Ramón Gieling, 2015 (NL)
8
IFFR Live
Speed Walking
Niels Arden Oplev, 2014 (D)
9
IFFR Live
Melody
Bernard Bellefroid, 2014 (Bel)
8
IFFR Live
The Sky Above Us
Marinus Groothof, 2015 (NL, Bel,
Serbia, Greece)
8
IFFR Live
23 films
72
4
7
42
26
simultaneous or quasi-simultaneous or Ultra-VOD releases (VOD window before theatres window)
29
We will divide these films into several categories:
- films which were commercially released long enough ago for us to have definite data
on ticket sales and revenues;
- within this first category, films which were released voluntarily to e-cinema, i.e.
direct-to-VOD with a considerable promotional budget;
- films released as part of the IFRR Festival, which must be considered separately,
insofar as they were distributed under the special conditions of a festival, which are
very different from the conditions of commercial release for a film.
Films with commercial
release, exploitation data
available
15 films
Viramundo, For those in peril, Magnifica presenza, After the Night, The Spirit of 45, Jimmy P.,
Mademoiselle C., Welcome to New York, Io sono Li, Goodbye to Language, The Absent One,
Master of the Universe, White Shadow, Under the Rainbow, Like an open Sky
Data unavailable
3 films
Eat your bones, Love Battles, Bastards
e-Cinema releases
2 films
Welcome to New York, The Keeper of lost causes
Festival films
5 films
Atlantic, Erbarme Dich - Matthäus Passion Stories, Speed Walking, Melody, The Sky Above Us
It is important to remember the limits as to what interpretations may be made of these
studies. Here we must reiterate the warnings from the last report:
- Each film and each release is unique. It is therefore difficult to draw general
conclusions from individual cases;
- Comparing the results of an experimental release with those of a traditional release
is an exercise in pure speculation, insofar as only the results of the former are
actually available, the other, by definition, not having taken place;
- All these results were obtained in the framework of an experiment, which
necessarily influences the conditions: the commitment of the various players
involved and also the media interest in the films concerned were biased by their
inclusion in this experiment;
- The experimental sample - nine films - was too small to allow strict statistical
analysis;
- The observations that can be made in the context of this very marginal experiment
are in no way indicative of the impact it might have, particularly on the economics of
the industry, if it were generalised or made part of a permanent system.
In particular, one should note that most of these films had a limited potential in the
countries where they were distributed within the context of the Preparatory Actions.
30
3. Brief description of film types based on their "potential"
The notion of a film's potential must be taken with a grain of salt, because it assumes the
idea of a pre-existing market, when the work of distribution consists in building the audience
gradually. Nevertheless, it is often used, perhaps partly because of its self-fulfilling nature:
the expected potential serves as a basis for the release plan which will have an important
influence on the actual audience.
In schematic terms, let us consider three configurations on a European scale: films with
dense and diffuse potential, films with dense and localised potential, and films with sparse
potential. Dense potential in a given area means that the film has a sufficient audience in
this area to be shown in a theatre.
Figure 10: from varied potential to varied configurations
The film has a large potential
audience at any location in the
country.
The film has a large potential
audience in certain areas of the
country.
The film has a large potential
audience spread across the entire
country.
One could therefore imagine a film which has a large potential audience on a national or
European scale, which is too greatly dispersed for theatre exhibition.
If one considers ticket sales for films released within the context of the first two initiatives of
the Preparatory Action, some seem to have a more diffuse potential across several
countries: this gives them high potential on the scale of all these countries, but which is
doubtless too limited locally to justify theatre showings.
Magnifica Presenza sold between 1,000 and 18,000 tickets in 6 European countries: this is
little on a national scale, but represents 34,000 across all of these 6 countries. Similarly, les
Bastards sold 87,000 tickets in France and 23,000 across 7 countries. And Jimmy P., after
having sold 264,000 tickets in France, then sold 24,000 across 10 countries.
31
The table below provides an overview of the audience structure for films in Europe. The x
axis shows the time between the first theatre release and the theatre release for the country
in question.
Figure 11: structures with varied potentials
Films with high potential in a country
Jimmy P.
Magnifica Presenza
Films with diffuse potential
Viramundo
Goodbye to Language
Films with average potential across one or two countries
The Spirit of 45
Io Sono Li
0
50 000
100 000
150 000
200 000
250 000
300 000
050 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 450 500
0
100 000
200 000
300 000
400 000
500 000
600 000
0100 200 300 400 500 600 700
0
1 000
2 000
3 000
4 000
5 000
6 000
050 100 150 200 250
0
1 000
2 000
3 000
4 000
5 000
6 000
7 000
8 000
9 000
10 000
050 100 150 200
0
5 000
10 000
15 000
20 000
25 000
30 000
35 000
40 000
050 100 150 200 250 300 350 400
0
20 000
40 000
60 000
80 000
100 000
120 000
0100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1 000
32
4. Film accessibility
We have data for 54 D&D or Ultra-VOD releases.
The previous report highlighted the significant increase in the visibility given to films at the
time of their distribution due to simultaneous VOD distribution. The following table reflects
this increase.
Table 11: increase in the availability of films
Film
Countries of
exhibition in
theatres (EU 36)
Countries of experimentation
Potential audience in
theatres in the
countries of
experimentation
Potential audience in
theatres + VOD27 in the
countries of
experimentation
Increase in
visibility
Magnifica Presenza
9
Austria, France, Ireland and
United Kingdom
71M
102M
+ 44%
Viramundo
11
France, Italy, Lithuania,
Poland, Portugal, Belgium, the
Netherlands, Luxembourg,
the United Kingdom and
Ireland
75M
179M
+ 178 %
The Spirit of 45
14
Belgium, Luxembourg, Italy,
Spain, Germany and the
Netherlands
43M
62M
+ 44 %
Jimmy P.
12
Italy, Germany and Spain
18M
56M
+ 211 %
Io sono Li
17
Portugal, Belgium, the
Netherlands, the United
Kingdom and Ireland
28M
76M
+ 171 %
For those in peril
7
France, Poland, Italy, Portugal
and the Netherlands
48M
120M
+ 150 %
After the night
6
France, Belgium, Spain and
the United Kingdom
41M
115M
+ 180 %
Master of the Universe
8
France, Italy, the Netherlands,
Poland and Greece
49M
115M
+ 135%
Goodbye to Language
7
Spain, Italy, Germany and
Belgium
28M
64M
+ 129 %
Mademoiselle C.
5
Spain, Italy and Germany
27M
64M
+ 137%
White Shadow
6
France, the United Kingdom,
the Netherlands, Lithuania,
Hungary and Romania
37M
106M
+ 186%28
Under the Rainbow
15
United Kingdom, Ireland,
Bulgaria and Spain
34M
70M
+ 106%
Like an open sky
4
Spain and Bulgaria
12M
22M
+ 83%
These figures are rough estimates, based on the population numbers in the urban areas
surrounding theatres which showed the films, and the penetration - given or estimated - of
VOD. They do, however, show that for all the films which have been released in new
formats, the population pool which potentially has access to the film has broadly increased,
often at least doubled. This is due to the fact that films are visible to a structurally limited
section of the population, the population of areas where the cinema theatres are located,
and that in addition, for the films under consideration, the very restricted release plans limit
this access even further.
27
calculated with the login data to a VOD service, provided by Digital Agenda for Europe.
28
apart from the Netherlands, for which the data was not known
33
Let us take the example of Goodbye to Language, by Jean-Luc Godard. Due to the fame of its
director, its award at the 2014 Cannes Festival and its experimental nature, this film could
arouse spontaneous interest in spectators from all over Europe. It was exhibited in 7
European countries: 3 under traditional release (France, Hungary, Austria), 3 as Day&Date
and 1 as Direct-to-VOD.
Table 12: visibility of Goodbye to Language in Europe
Countries
Urban areas
where film
exhibited
Coverage
Release within the
context of
experimentation
Additional
population with
access to the film
France
142
35%
Austria
?
Hungary
?
Belgium
5
39 %
D&D
4M
Spain
4
28%
D&D
7M
Italy
5
24%
D&D
9M
Germany
0
0%
Direct-to-VOD
20M
Total
40M
So therefore at least 40M additional people in Europe had the possibility of seeing the film
when it generated visibility.
34
5. Additional audience for films released as D&D or Ultra-VOD
The following table summarises the number of admissions and VOD transactions made for
these films, in the countries which had been involved in at least 3 experiments.
Figure 12: average results by country for D&D releases
Country
No. of Ultra-
VOD or D&D
releases
Theatre
admissions
(average)
VOD
transactions
(average)
Transactions
/ admissions
Screens /
millions of
inhabitants
Belgium
4
1,466
199
14 %
49
France
6
4,800
750
16 %
85
Italy
7
2,581
984
38 %
53
Netherlands
5
2,319
318
14 %
52
Poland
3
1,221
366
30 %
31
Portugal
3
470
92
20 %
51
Spain
8
3,137
612
20 %
85
UK/Ireland
7
8,337
763
9 %
61
The ratio of the number of VOD transactions over the number of theatre admissions for a
film in a given country is on average 0.66 with a standard deviation of 1.2. This ratio is very
important in some cases, as shown in the table below.
Figure 13: D&D releases with a VOD/admissions
ratio above 2
Film
Country
VOD/admissions
ratio
Viramundo
Lithuania
2.18
For those in peril
Italy
2.01
After the night
Belgium
2.02
Master of the Universe
Italy
7.05
Mademoiselle C.
Italy
3.88
White Shadow
Hungary
2.68
This ratio between the number of VOD transactions and theatre admissions varies by 10% on
average to 40% depending on the countries. One might question the correlation between
this report and the density of cinema screens in the countries. The following curve seems to
show that there is in fact a correlation as the relative number of VOD transactions increases
when the number of theatres in the country falls. This seems to indicate that VOD is a real
solution for accessing films.
35
Figure 14: transactions/admissions ratio as a function of the national density of screens
Italy is an exception: the ratio between VOD transactions and the number of cinema
theatres is relatively very high in comparison to the number of theatres in the country.
Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom respectively issued 7, 8 and 7 D&D releases. We can
compare the results of the different films in one country.
The following figures show that there is no correlation between the VOD transactions /
theatre admissions ratio and the number of film prints, in the cases of Italy and Spain.
Figure 15: VOD/theatres ratio as a function of the number of prints in Italy
0%
5%
10%
15%
20%
25%
30%
35%
40%
010 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90
Transactions / admissions
Screens / millions of inhabitants
0,00
1,00
2,00
3,00
4,00
5,00
6,00
7,00
8,00
0 5 10 15 20 25 30
36
Figure 16: VOD/theatres ratio as a function of the number of prints in Spain
The figure below does not reveal any obvious correlation between the country coverage
(percentage of the population with the possibility of seeing the film in theatres) and the VOD
transactions / theatre admissions ratio in the case of Italy.
Figure 17: VOD/theatres ratio as a function of the country theatre coverage in Italy
We could question the dynamics behind the adoption of these new distribution channels,
which suffer at the outset from a lack of reputation. The cases of Spain, Italy and the United
Kingdom offer a certain perspective: these three countries each issued seven to eight D&D
releases in the space of 12 to 20 months. Spain and Italy seem to show that there is a trend
towards adoption, as this ratio increases over time. There does not appear to be the same
trend in the United Kingdom.
0,00
0,10
0,20
0,30
0,40
0,50
0,60
0,70
0,80
0246810 12 14
0,00
1,00
2,00
3,00
4,00
5,00
6,00
7,00
8,00
0% 5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 45%
37
Figure 18: VOD/admissions
ratio in Spain
Figure 19: VOD/admissions
ratio in Italy
Figure 20: VOD/admissions
ratio in United Kingdom
0,00
0,10
0,20
0,30
0,40
0,50
0,60
0,70
0,80
14/08/2013 22/11/2013 02/03/2014 10/06/2014 18/09/2014 27/12/2014 06/04/2015
0,00
1,00
2,00
3,00
4,00
5,00
6,00
7,00
8,00
06/05/2013 14/08/2013 22/11/2013 02/03/2014 10/06/2014 18/09/20 142 7/12/2014 06/04/2015
0,00
0,20
0,40
0,60
0,80
1,00
1,20
1,40
1,60
1,80
2,00
06/05/201314/08/2013 22/11/201302/03/2014 10/06/2014 18/09/201427/12/2014 06/04/201515/07/2015
38
6. Geography and film audience
The degree of to which VOD replaces theatres (or cannibalisation) is a very important factor
in the recreation of economic balance resulting from the deployment of new film
distribution channels, such as D&D.
Experiments provide information on the geography of consumption in theatres and on
iTunes. iTunes sales only represent a part of VOD transactions, their geography may serve an
accurate approximation of the geography of all electronic transactions.
Let us take the film Master of the Universe, which gave rise to high numbers of electronic
transactions in certain countries.
Countries
Release
Theatres
Admissions
VOD
transactions
iTunes
share
France
12/11/14 UVOD
26/11/14 theatres
26
1160
1503
27 %
Netherlands
02/10/2014
20
621
323
64 %
Italy
27/11/2014
12
539
775
92 %
Poland
05/12/2014
25
2270
807
31%
Greece
20/01/2014
1
528
68
100%
The film was screened in theatres in 8 countries, including 5 as part of the Preparatory
Action - France, the Netherlands, Italy, Poland and Greece - and 3 outside Preparatory Action
(Germany, Switzerland and Austria). The map below shows the geography of theatre
admissions for the 5 countries of the experiment, and highlights the very limited nature of
the film's accessibility for the populations of the countries concerned.
39
Figure 21: geography of Master of the Universe theatre admissions
for the 5 countries of the experiment
Comparing the geographical distribution of theatre admissions and VOD transactions firstly
show that VOD distribution covers a country much more densely, and seems to respond to a
demand, as shown in Italy and France.
40
Figure 22: geographical distribution of theatre admissions
and iTunes transactions in Italy
29
Figure 23: geographical distribution of theatre admissions
and iTunes transactions in France
29
in red are iTunes transactions and in black are theatre admissions. The large dots correspond to a higher
number of transactions.
41
We can compare the geographical distribution of iTunes transactions in the first VOD
window (Ultra-VOD, exclusive for two weeks before the cinema release) and the second
window, open three months and a half after the film release in theatres.
1st VOD window
Theatre exhibition
2nd VOD window
12/11/14 - 25/11/14
26/11/14 - 3/6/15
12/4/2015 - 25/5/2015
429 transactions
(2 weeks)
1,160 admissions
269 transactions
(6 weeks)
The number of VOD transactions is clearly higher in the first window, when the film was
released in theatres.
Figure 24: Breakdown of iTunes sales during the first and second window of VOD exploitation
The juxtaposition of these two maps demonstrates a general decline in the number of
transactions, in particular in areas where the film was distributed in theatres. Thus, around
Toulouse, around ten VOD transactions were recorded when the film was available in
theatres, and none in the second window, when the film was no longer available.
The same comparison can be made for the Paris region:
42
Figure 25: Master of the Universe theatre admissions in the Paris region
Figure 26: iTunes transactions in the first VOD window (15 days)
Figure 27: iTunes transactions
in the second VOD window (15 days)
Several observations can be made on the basis of these two comparisons:
- the number of VOD transactions falls in the second window;
- the geographical distribution of VOD transactions is relatively similar in the two
windows, with perhaps a more pronounced reduction in transactions in the suburbs
in the second window;
- a greater concentration of transactions in the city centre than in the suburbs;
- an apparently positive correlation between theatre admissions and VOD
transactions.
The same comparison can be made in Milan, where the film was initially offered in VOD,
before coming out in the theatres and then being available only on VOD again. With VOD,
the film was released on two platforms, but most of the transactions were made on iTunes
(95% in the first three weeks).
43
Figure 28: Master of the Universe audience in Milan
Theatre
VOD (iTunes)
Week of 26 Nov 14
-
51 transactions
Week of 3 Dec. 14
1 theatre, 2
sessions
84 admissions
47 transactions
Week of 10 Dec. 14
-
19 transactions
Week 1: VOD
Week 2: theatre and VOD
Week 3: VOD
Although these maps do not provide any information about the potential number of theatre
admissions transformed into VOD transactions, they do not necessarily suggest the existence
of cannibalisation. The low number of transactions does not allow us to say whether a joint
release in theatres and on VOD takes away some of the spectators from the theatre
catchment area.
44
7. e-Cinema releases
Experiments gave rise to 11 exclusively VOD releases. Of these ten releases, two were "e-
cinema" releases, which enjoyed a considerable marketing campaign: Welcome to New York
in France, Italy, Spain and Germany and The Keeper of lost causes in France and Spain.
The case of The Keeper of lost causes is interesting to analyse. This film was originally
released in France. It is the first episode in a pair of Danish thrillers: The Keeper of lost causes
and The Absent One. The distributor chose to release the two episodes almost jointly - the
first only for e-cinema, the second as a traditional release - by putting in place a single
promotion campaign for the two films, with the exception of purchasing space on the
television, which, in compliance with the prohibition on advertising cinema on the television,
only applied to the first episode released for e-cinema.
A theatre release survey was performed by L’Observatoire de la satisfaction between
Wednesday 8 April and Tuesday 21 April 2015 in the Montparnasse and Opéra
neighbourhoods in Paris. Here are the main results.
The Keeper of lost causes
e-Cinema release, 9 platforms
27/03/2015
The Absent One
theatre release, 111 prints
08/04/2015
45
Table 13: results of the survey on the cinema release of The Absent One in Paris
Spectators interviewed
356
Keen and regular film-goers (more than once a month to the
cinema)
98.3%
Satisfied (Very or Quite)
86.5%
Know about e-Cinema
31.2 %
Spectators who had seen The Keeper of lost causes beforehand
3.4 %
Spectators who knew about the release of The Keeper of lost
causes beforehand
38.6 %
Spectators who intended to rent The Keeper of lost causes
57.9 %
Spectators who would have preferred to see The Absent One in e-
cinema
5.2% (0% of the regulars)
Several lessons can be drawn from these answers:
- Competition with theatres from e-cinema seems very low on this film, because only
5% of spectators would have preferred seeing it in e-cinema;
- more generally, no spectators calling themselves regulars would prefer e-cinema.
Spectators who would have preferred to see the film in e-cinema are from the keen
spectators segment who go to the cinema at least once a week. This may mean that
for keen spectators, e-cinema is a way to better satisfy their desire for cinema, by
seeing more films while still going to the cinema as much as before;
- awareness of e-cinema, for the spectators of this film, is not insignificant, but there is
still much room for it to increase;
- there is very good 'catch-on' between the two films in one sense: 58% of the film's
spectator intend to rent it. Furthermore, e-cinema brings 3% additional spectators to
the theatre, but the survey results do not indicate what proportion of the people
who viewed the film in e-cinema came to see the other film in the theatre.
In terms of results, the comparison between the number of tickets sold for The Absent One
and the number of VOD transactions for The Keeper of lost causes, from a shared
promotional campaign
30
, shows, to no surprise, that e-cinema is still far from having set in:
the sum spent on purchasing space for 1 spectator is 7 times higher today for e-cinema than
for theatres.
30
or even higher for The Keeper of lost causes, because the promotional television campaign, for legal reasons,
only covered the VOD release.
46
The Absent One
The Keeper of lost
causes
France theatre
release, 8 April 2015
France e-cinema
release, 27 March 2015
Relative number of spectators31
per € invested in purchase of
space
1
0.14
With the development of this new distribution channel, the gap between the cost of
acquiring a theatre spectator and an e-cinema spectator is likely to decrease.
The distributor share per spectators is, however, higher for e-cinema. The distributor share
per Euro invested in purchase of space is, consequently, not as low in relative terms: 5 times
lower for e-cinema in comparison to theatre exhibition. Here again, this relative gap is likely
to decrease.
We can compare the audience breakdown in theatres and in e-cinema for the two films
32
.
The proximity between the two maps is striking, in particular on a nationwide scale. On a
small scale, the audience essentially breaks down in the same way across the whole country,
for both types of release, with a polarisation effect for the theatre release. Interpreting this
phenomenon is not simple, in particular due to the exclusive nature of each release. One
cannot conclude that substitution occurred, because in both cases, the film was only
available through one distribution channel.
A larger scale reflects a greater dispersion: VOD spectators are much more dispersed than
spectators in theatres, which further corroborates the idea that digital distribution enables
potential spectators to access a film. The maps of the Paris region show that many
spectators would only have been able to see the film in theatres by travelling long distances.
The comparison between these two maps therefore suggests that e-cinema may be of
interest to audiences dispersed across the entire country, who are less "urban".
31
brought to base 1, for the number of spectators in theatres per € invested.
32
The size of the dots is not on the same scale, as the number of iTunes transactions and the number of
theatre admissions are not of the same amplitude.
47
Figure 29: Geography of iTunes transactions
in France for The Keeper of lost causes
Figure 30: Geography of theatre admissions
in France for The Absent One
Figure 291: Geography of iTunes transactions
in the Paris regions in week 1 for The Keeper of lost causes
Figure 32: Geography of theatre admissions
in the Paris regions in week 1 for The Absent One
It is interesting to compare the audience breakdowns over time. The figure below shows a
significant difference in the slope between theatres and e-cinema, which is more than ten
times lower for e-cinema. The e-cinema exploitation period is less restricted - by theatre
saturation. Let us note that there is no reason why this outcome should be specific to e-
cinema: it is no doubt valid in general for digital exploitation. Less abrupt audience time
structures - with a more gentle slope and a longer duration - are more suited to films which
are more difficult to access.
48
Figure 34: dynamic compared to audience over time
33
33
The scales are not the same for The Absent One and The Keeper of lost causes
49
8. The IFFR Live Festival
A festival offers one-off visibility to films which are shown there, which can sometimes go
beyond the actual venue. For films which are not yet commercially distributed on a large
scale, VOD distribution at the time the festival is scheduled may increase their audience, and
may enable potential spectators to see them.
The involvement of the Rotterdam Festival IFFR Live (IFRR) in the Preparatory Action can be
examined from this angle. It consisted in showing five of the festival's films both in 40
theatres in 10 European countries and in VOD in these same countries, and to enable web
users to chat to the film teams. It therefore consisted in using the means provided by the
Internet to give Festival access to a greater audience.
The results of this experiment cannot be compared to others, because it involved both films
that were ambitious in artistic terms but with a naturally limited audience, and films which
did not have the means to promote a commercial release.
Film
Countries
participating
Admissions
VOD transactions
Atlantic
8
1,580
319
Erbarme dich
7
1,869
285
Melody
7
909
1,027
Speed Walking
9
1,232
135
The Sky Above Us
7
405
408
50
9. General conclusion
The purpose of this report was not to declare these experiments as successes or failures. In a
context where the cinema industry's economics and practices are undergoing profound
transformation, the purpose of these experiments is to better understand the changes
taking place, and especially to better anticipate the factors which determine
complementarity between different distribution channels.
The quantitative results of these experiments remain modest. This was necessarily the case
in their construction, because the films chosen, with the exception of films released in e-
cinema, were films which were experiencing difficulties in terms of exposure and circulation.
Insofar as the idea was to offer extra visibility to films which were lacking it, it is natural that
they would have low audience levels, all the more so as they lacked a hefty promotional
budget.
Nevertheless, several lessons can be drawn from these experiments.
The first, which is indisputable, is the considerable expansion of the films' potential
audience. Whether this is seen in the increase in the potential audience pool, in the
comparisons between theatre audiences and digital transactions or in the maps which
highlight the audience geography, one can only observe that simultaneous VOD and theatre
releases mitigate the aberration of a large proportion of a country having limited access to a
film. Day&Date releases are a factor in reducing the real cinematographic divide.
Further conclusions can be drawn on the types of films. Although it is evident that not all
films have the same potential, the structure of the audience for the films considered in the
experiments highlights a difference in local density of potential, which may make an
alternative form of distribution more advantageous. Some films have high potential on a
national, or even European scale, but insufficient local potential for in-theatre showings.
Combined theatre and VOD releases enable these films to reach a large, yet disparate
audience.
Film revenues, in numbers of electronic transactions, are not inconsiderable in comparison
to the numbers of theatre admissions and may, in some cases, reach very significant levels.
51
Furthermore, the countries involved in several experiments show an increase in the
transactions/admissions ratio, which seems to show that there is an effect where the
audience is educated about this type of distribution and/or distributors learn how to
promote it.
The issue of spectators transferring from the theatre to VOD is important for maintaining
economic balance in the industry. The geographical reports on iTunes transactions and their
comparison with the geography of theatre admissions does not provide any significant
information on potential cannibalisation.
Finally, the experiments show, through the major differences that there may be in the films'
revenues, that each film is unique, both in terms of the audience it may reach and its
reception in a given country. The increasing number of distribution channels is a response to
this diversity in film profiles, where the choice of a distribution channel may optimise its
audience and improve its overall finances. Theatre, D&D or direct-to-VOD (or e-cinema)
releases therefore present options depending on the films' profile.
52
10. Annexes
Film Forms
AFTER THE NIGHT aka ATE VER A LUZ by Basil da Cunha
ATLANTIC by Jan Willen van Ewjik
BASTARDS aka LES SALAUDS by Claire Denis
EAT YOUR BONES aka MANGE TES MORTS by Jean-Charles Hue
ERBARME DICH MATTHAUS PASSION STORIES by Ramon Gieling
FOR THOSE IN PERIL by Paul Wright
GOODBYE TO LANGUAGE aka ADIEU AU LANGAGE by Jean-Luc Godard
IO SONO LI aka LA PETITE VENISE by Andrea Segre
JIMMY P aka JIMMY P. PSYCHOTHERAPIE D’UN INDIEN DES PLAINES by Arnaud Desplechin
LIKE AN OPEN SKY aka A CIEL OUVERT by Mariana Otero
LOVE BATTLES aka MES SEANCES DE LUTTE by Jacques Doillon
MADEMOISELLE C. by Fabien Constant
MAGNIFICA PRESENZA by Ferzan Ozpetek
MASTER OF THE UNIVERSE by Marc Bauder
MELODY by Bernard Bellefroid
MISERICORDE aka DEPARTMENT Q : THE KEEPER OF LOST CAUSES by Mikkel Norgaard
SPEED WALKING by Niels Arden Oplev
THE SKY ABOVE US by Marinus Groothof
THE SPIRIT OF 45 aka L’ESPRIT DE 45 by Ken Loach
UNDER THE RAINBOW aka AU BOUT DU CONTE by Agnès Jaoui
VIRAMUNDO de Pierre-Yves Borgeaud
WHITE SHADOW by Noaz Deshe
53
ATE VER A LUZ (After the Night) by Basil da Cunha
Après la nuit (France)
After the Night (Belgique et Royaume-Uni)
Hasta Ver la Luz (Espagne)
Directed by Basil da Cunha (1st feature)
With Pedro Ferreira, Joao Veiga, Nelson da Cruz Duarte Rodrigues
Nationality: Switzerland/Portugal Year: 2013
Producers: BOX Productions, HEAD - Geneva
Genre : Drama
Festivals : La Quinzaine des Réalisateurs 2013, Festival de Rotterdam 2014
Synopsis: Straight out of jail, Sombra returns to his life as a drug dealer in the creole slum of Lisbon. In between
the money he has lent and can't get back, the money he owes, a fanciful iguana, an invasive little girl and a
ringleader who begins to mistrust him, he starts to think that he might have been better off in the clink...
Distributed by: Numéro Zéro (Belgium), Capricci Films Espana (Spain) Capricci Films (France) and Capricci UK
(United Kingdom).
International Sales: Urban Distribution International
Film spotted in the catalogue of Urban Distribution International by Capricci and European partners, interested
in a multi-territory and multi-platform release via The Tide Experiment.
3 day-and-date releases , 1 VOD preview release
4 territories
Belgium, Spain, France and United Kingdom
5 languages
English , Castilian, Catalan, Flemish and French
17 VOD platforms
Multiterritorial: iTunes (4 local stores), Google (3 local stores),
Belgium: Unvisciné, DVDPost, Plush, Voo, Belgacom
France: La Vod d'Orange, FilmoTV, Distrify
Spain: Filmin
United Kingdom: Curzon Home Cinema
20 screens (1st week of exploitation)
54
Marketing
Joint positioning
o Target audience: 25-45 age-group, well-informed, connected film fans
o Release dates: release periods grouped within 3 weeks
<--- 3-week cycle --->
Até ver a luz
Release date
S15
S16
S17
S18
S19
S20
S21
S22
France*
09/04/2014 (VOD)
23/04/2014
(theatre)
VOD
Theatre
Spain
16/04/2014
Belgium
23/04/2014
United Kingdom
25/04/2014
* in France, Après la nuit was released on VOD 2 weeks (9 April) before the theatrical release (23 April)
and its VOD preview exploitation ceased the day before theatrical release.
o Pooled tools a shared visual identity
Common poster and trailer;
Organization and live on-line streaming on Dailymotion of a debate between the director,
Basil da Cunha, and Joël Farges, author-director-producer, member of L’ARP (material
subsequently reused for promotion on social media);
Promotion on social media centralized and coordinated, on a shared Facebook page
(geolocalization) ;
Pooled Internet advertising campaign: videoseeding (placing of trailer on targeted sites with
advertising message (call to action) and advertising campaign on Facebook;
Relationships with influential European bloggers (newsletters);
Local promotion campaigns (and cross-border tools):
Local promotion campaigns systematically highlighted the multiplatform release:
Mention of the two platforms on all promotional supports;
Purchase of advertising space on different media, whether or not they traditionally target one
or other mode of exploitation (posters, press inserts, Internet banners, etc.);
Highlighting in the local press of the exceptional release scheme. A partnership with the
magazine So Film also made it possible to promote the film, particularly by making it available
to readers on the Internet (solution already proposed to the distributors of For Those in Peril).
The director, Basil da Cunha, made himself readily available, being present at previews and evening debates
(Paris, London, Barcelona), and granting interviews to the local press (RFI, Le Mouv’, France Inter, El Pais, BTV,
etc.) and local VOD platforms (FilmoTV interview by Laurent Delmas).
55
ATLANTIC. by Jan-Willem van Ewijk
Directed by Jan-Willem van Ewijk (second feature film)
With Thekla Reuten, Fettah Lamara, Jan-Willem van Ewijk
Production country: The Netherlands - Production year : 2014
Producers : Augustus Film, Propellor Film, Man’s Film Production, Endorphine Production
Budget Production : 1.710.000 euros
Genre : drama
Festivals : Toronto International Film Festival, Busan International Film Festival, Dubai International
Film Festival, International Film Festival Rotterdam, Istanbul Film Festival, Seattle International Film
Festival.
Synopsis : Fettah’s desire for freedom in Europe is greater than his love for his homeland and
family. The young fisherman sets off on an exhausting, perilous journey across the terrain he
knows best: the ocean. And not by boat, but on his surfboard. Breathtaking poetic and exciting.
Distributed by: ABC- Cinemien (The Netherlands).
International Sales : Fortissimo Films
8 sorties day-and-date
8 territoires
The Netherlands, Poland, United Kingdom, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Italy, Bosnia-Herzegovina
7 langues
Dutch, Polish, English, Serbian, Slovenian, Spanish, Italian
2 plateformes VOD
Multiterritoire : Distrify
Spain: Filmin
31 salles
56
Marketing strategy
A special website was developed : www. Iffr.com/live
In the early stages of the project this website was used to inform interested cinemas and other professionals.
Close to and during the events the website was used to promote IFFR Live to the audience, to stream films
via VOD and function as a second screen during the introductions and Q&A’s.
In addition to this dedicated website participating cinemas received a media kit to promote the events in
their cinemas to their audience.
Media Kit
A media kit was developed to promote IFFR LIVE through the participating European cinemas. The media kit
contained amongst other things: 6 Facebook and 6 Twitter headers (1 general, and 5 for each specific film)
and an IFFR Live introduction film.
Twitter
The media kit also included an extensive schedule of tweets for different target audiences using #livecinema.
IFFR Live was promoted as event and as individual screenings. The tweets included specially made trailers,
stills and after movies (see below).
The tweet schedule was structured as follows:
Before the festival
During IFFR Live
After the screening
Spread the word (film lovers)
Premiere Announcements
Premiere Announcements
Spread the word (press & influencers)
Engagement Boosts
Engagement Boosts
Boost Ticket Sales (Tiger Friends of the IFFR)
Aftermovies
Aftermovies
Premiere Announcements
Next premiere announcements
Next premiere announcements
retweets (ad hoc)
retweets (ad hoc)
Live Reporting and Quotes
Live Reporting and Quotes
Different messages were prepared for different groups of Twitter users: IFFR, cinemas and VOD platforms,
KPN and so called influencers: such as cast and crew of the film.
Twitter was not only the tool for the interactive Q&A, but also an active media partner that helped to
promote IFFR Live on a large scale within Europe.
After movies
An ‘After Movie’ was made after each IFFR Live event. This after move gave an impression of the IFFR Live
event. The after movies were distributed though Twitter (see above) and YouTube.
Analogue Promotion in and by cinemas
Film posters of the films with special stickers were sent to the cinemas. The stickers mentioned: ‘IFFR Live.
Special screening + live Twitter Q&A with film maker and cast. #livecinema @IFFR www.IFFR.com/Live.
Participating cinemas were invited to make their own marketing plan and apply for reimbursement of related
costs.
VOD promotion in the cinemas
57
After each cinema screening, a special promotion code was shown on the screens. Audiences were
encouraged to tell their friends about the experience they had and share the promotion code.
Promotion on Filmin
Filmin dedicated a post on its blog to IFFR Live in general and to each specific event.
Impact social media
IFFR Live website was visited from 640 cities in 61 countries.
Over a period of 5 days, 2.496 film fans were responsible for 4.162 views, using their mobile phone,
tablet or computer.
#livecinema was trending topic in The Netherlands 3 times and has reached an estimated amount of
4 million impressions
Nearly 67.000 people we reached on Facebook
Audience numbers
Audience in cinemas
VOD numbers
Number
of
platforms
Platforms
Total views
Poland, UK, Serbia, Italy,
Slovenia, Bosnia and
Herzegina
1
Distrify
43
Spain
1
Filmin
276
Total
319
Number of
cinemas
(TOTAL)
Audience
numbers
(TOTAL)
Netherlands
14
1066
Poland
5
115
UK
4
54
Slovenia
1
130
Spain
1
16
Italy
2
24
Serbia
3
134
Bosnia-
Herzegovina
1
41
Total
31
1580
58
BASTARDS by Claire Denis
Director: Claire Denis
With Vincent Lindon, Chiara Mastroianni, Julie Bataille, Lola Créton, Michel Subor
Nationality: France Year: 2013
Producers: Alcatraz Film, Wild Bunch
Genre: Drama
Festivals: Festival de Cannes 2013: nominated in Un Certain Regard, Prague French Film Festival, Fabiofest film
festival (Slovakia)
Synopsis: A man commits suicide, leaving his affairs in chaos and wife in a state of distress. She contacts her
brother (Vincent Lindon), who gives up his job as a merchant sea captain to investigate what happened. But the
truth may be something that no one ever wants revealed. Acclaimed French filmmaker Claire Denis (White
Material, Beau Travail) returns with arguably her most mysterious work since 2004’s L’intrus.
EDAD Distributors: Artcam (Czech Republic), Curzon Film World (UK + Eire), ASFK (Slovakia), Golem (Spain)
International sales: Wild Bunch
Key arguments why we chose bastard for EDAD:
- Claire Denis is one of the most acclaimed European directors
- The cast had the potential to appeal to a foreign, arthouse audience
- 4 European distributors were willing to release the film day-and-date
5 day-and-date releases
Theatrical: 28 November 2013 in Czech Republic, 14 February 2014 in the UK and Eire, 21
March 2014 in Spain and Slovakia
VOD: strictly day-and-date with the theatrical release in all territories
5 territories
Czech Republic, UK, Eire, Spain, Slovakia
9 VOD platforms
Czech Republic + Slovakia - SVOD: Voyo.cz (48 hours only) / TVOD: Aerovod.cz
UK + Eire - Premium VOD: Curzon Home Cinema / Filmflex / BFI Player / GFT Player (Glasgow
Film Theatre) / Current VOD: iTunes
Spain - Filmin, Imagenio
EDAD
59
Release schedule
Marketing Plan
Title: The film was released under three different titles according to the local specs of each territory :
Parchanti spí dobře in Czech Republic and Slovakia, Bastards in the UK and Eire, Los Canallas in Spain.
In all five territories, the film was meant to appeal to an arthouse cinema audience, males and females
aged 40 to 60 with an urban profile. The French community along with fans of Claire Denis were also
targeted.
The marketing campaign emphasized as much as possible that the film was released day-and-date in
theatres and on demand.
Press advertising focused on general newspapers (Periodico de Cataluna in Spain, The Observer and The
Guardian in the UK), cultural magazines (Time Out in the UK, A2 in Czech Republic) and film magazines
(La Guia del Ocio and Cine 200 in Spain).
Online advertising was key to make people aware of the day-and-date release. All four distributors used
Facebook and Twitter promoted posts. Web banners and/or trailers were displayed on Cinepur.cz
(Czech Republic), The Guardian website (UK), Preview Network (Spain).
Special events were organised to raise awareness around the film : Claire Denis came to the UK for a
Q&A following the UK premiere of the film and was in Madrid to promote the film on the 19 March
2014. In Czech Republic, the film pre-premiered at the Prague French Film Festival with a reception and
the release was followed by a Claire Denis retrospective at the National Film Archive. In Slovakia the
release took place during the Febiofest Film Festival as one of the first D&D release of a foreign film in
the territory.
The UK, Eire and Czech Republic also ran competitions around the film online and on the radio.
Posters, flyers, postcards were created and displayed.
28 Nov 13
Czech Republic
D&D release
14 Feb 14
UK + Eire
D&D release
21 Mar 14
Spain + Slovakia
D&D release
60
TIDE
EAT YOUR BONES by Jean-Charles Hue
Directed by Jean-Charles Hue
Nationality : Italy/Germany Year : 2013
Producers : Asmara Film, Chromosom Film
Production Budget: 1 103 434 Euros
Genre : fiction
Festivals : Directors’ Fortnight (2014), Prix Jean Vigo (2014)
Synopsis : 18-year-old Jason Dorkel belongs to the community of travelers. He is about to celebrate his
Christian baptism while Fred, his half-brother, returns after several years in prison.
Distributors : Artcam (Czech Republic and Slovakia), Contact Film (The Netherlands), Gutek Films (Poland),
Numéro Zero (Belgium), Capricci Cine (Spain), Capricci UK (UK).
Sales Agent : Capricci Films
7 day-and-date releases
7 European territories
Belgium, Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, The Netherlands and United Kingdom
7 languages
Czech, English, French, Dutch, Polish, Slovak and Spanish
23 VOD platforms
Multi-territory : iTunes (7 local stores), Google Play (3 local stores), Sony (2 local stores).
Netherlands: KPN, UPC
Spain: Filmin, Wuaki TV
United Kingdom: Curzon Home Cinema, Amazon
Poland: Onet
Belgium: Universciné, DVDPost, Plush, Voo
Czech Republic : Alza.cz, Voyo.cz, aerovod.cz
61
Marketing
Joint positioning
Target audiences:
Primary target: Men and women between 25 and 50 years-old, highly educated, urban, relatively-frequent
cinemagoers, the so-called “Movie selectives”. More for theatrical. Men between 25 and 50 years-old with
eclectic tastes for cinema, the so-called hyper-connected movie addicts. More for VOD.
Secondary target: Political and social engaged communities with diversity; Eventually gypsies / Roman
communities for event-driven actions (not for theatrical or VOD figures)
Release dates:
<--- 4-week cycle --->
White Shadow
Release dates
W13
W14
W15
W16
W17
Slovakia
26/03/2015
The Netherlands
2/04/2015
Czech Rep
2/04/2015
Poland
10/04/2015
Spain
17/04/2015
(theaters) &
23/04/2015 (VOD)
Theaters
VOD
Belgium
22/04/2015
United-Kingdom
25/04/2015
Comparisons:
Animal Kingdom (2010) by David Michôd
The Lord’s ride (2010) by Jean-Charkes Hue
Pooled and pan-European promotional tools:
A genuine consensus on the positioning of the film made it possible to:
design of new poster, new trailer edit, press-dossier and website translated for all
territories (http://eatyourbonesfilm.com/). Two different posters were chosen by
all the territories
create a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/eatyourbones) in order to
launch the geo-localized trailers and boost them for each territory. As the film had
a different title on each territory the page was just used as a launch platform. We
collaborated with each territory to boost the title in their own networks
manage digital video campaign through Emerse to promote the trailers in YouTube
and linked to specialized sites and in simple Emerse YouTube TrueView
launch an event-driven element: the director visited UK and we shot an exclusive
video about his experience and contact with the audience. This video was used
across the other countries as well.
62
ERBARME DICH- MATTHËAUS PASSION STORIES
by Ramón Gieling
Directed by : Ramón Gieling
Production country : The Netherlands Production year : 2015
Producers : KeyDocs
Genre : documentary
Festivals : International Film Festival Rotterdam, Visions du Réel, Jeonju International Film Festival,
Synopsis : Impressive, labyrinthine narrative by Gieling (Johan Cruijff : en un momento dado on
Bach’s Matthew Passion and the exceptional relationship that experts (including theatre director
Peter Sellars and conductor Pieter Jan Leusink) and enthusiasts have with this work. In the
meantime, a homeless choir rehearses the piece.
Distributed by : ABC- Cinemien (The Netherlands)
International Sales: Doc&Film International
Marketing strategy
See Marketing strategy Atlantic.
7 sorties day-and-date
7 territoires
The Netherlands, Poland, United Kingdom, Serbia, Spain, Italy, Bosnia-Herzegovina
6 langues
Dutch, Polish, English, Serbian, Spanish, Italian.
2 plateformes VOD
Multiterritoire : Distrify
Spain: Filmin
29 salles
63
Audience numbers
Audience in cinemas
VOD numbers
Number of
platforms
Platforms
Total views
Poland, UK, Serbia, Italy,
Bosnia and Herzegina
1
Distrify
2
Spain
1
Filmin
283
Total
285
Number of
cinemas
(TOTAL)
Audience
numbers
(TOTAL)
Netherlands
14
1476
Poland
6
144
UK
2
21
Italy
2
30
Spain
1
16
Serbia
3
153
Bosnia-
Herzegovina
1
29
Total
29
1869
64
SPEED BUNCH
GOODBYE TO LANGUAGE 3D
By Jean-Luc Godard
Directed by Jean-Luc Godard
Nationality: France/Suisse Production year : 2014
Producers: Brahim Chioua, Vincent Maraval, Alain Sarde
Production Budget: 2M€
Genre: Drame
Festivals: Jury Prize of the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, Best Picture of the 2014 National Society Critics
Awards
Synopsis:
The idea is simple: A married woman and a single man meet. They love, they argue, fists fly. A dog
strays between town and country. The seasons pass. The man and woman meet again. The dog finds
itself between them. The other is in one, the one is in the other and they are three. The former
husband shatters everything. A second film begins: the same as the first, and yet not. From the
human race we pass to metaphor. This ends in barking and a baby's cries.
Distributors: BiM Distribuzione (Italy); Wild Bunch Germany (Germany); Vertigo (Spain); Numéro
Zéro (Belgium)
Sales agent: Wild Bunch
Key arguments in the selection of this title for the Speed Bunch project:
- Jean-Luc Godard is a famous European director;
3 day-and-date releases & 1 festival premiere followed by a direct-to-VOD release
Day-and-date release in Spain, Italy & Belgium
Festival & direct-to-VOD release in Germany (AROUND THE WORLD IN 14 FILMS Festival in Berlin)
4 territories
Belgium, Germany, Italy and Spain
5 languages
Dutch, French, German, Italian and Spanish
18 VOD platforms
Multiterritorial: iTunes (4 local stores)
Italy: GooglePlay, Chili, Timvision, Mymovies, Infinity, Premium Play e Anicaondemand
Spain: Filmin, Wuaki, Nubeox, Yomvi, Ono, Movistar
Belgium: UniversCiné
42 cinemas
65
- Jean-Luc Godard is one of the first European directors who have really shown a deep
willingness to test new distribution models, as shown before with the release strategy of Film
Socialism which was premiered on VOD simultaneously to its official screening in
Competition at Un Certain Regard of the Festival de Cannes 2010, during two days before its
theatrical release;
- Goodbye to Language was selected at the Festival de Cannes 2014 and received the Jury
Prize, confirming Godard’s international reputation.
Marketing
Common release date: choice of a common release date taking into account respective line-ups and
markets of each distributor and following one rule: release the film in all territories and on all medias
concerned within the shortest possible time-frame
Release dates:
Pooled and pan-European promotional tools:
A genuine consensus on the positioning of the film made it possible to:
Share visual identity: use of the same designer to draw up a joint graphics charter (common
poster, trailer, etc.). However, freedom for each distributor to adapt to his own market and
the expectations of his local audience.
Social media campaign: Facebook, Twitter, Youtube
Distributors’ social media pages: these pages already have their fan bases so it’s more
efficient than create a new specific one for the film and start from 0 like.
iTunes facebook pages: the international main page has more than 29 million likes with
the possibility to target only the French or German fans. The Italian page has more than
500.000 fans.
VOD platform’s social media pages: promotion by the VOD platforms such as MYmovies
or Filmin
Web campaign: targeted by territory with banners mentioning the VOD release and also the
theatrical release for the countries concerned.
Get a single and strong promotion strategy on iTunes VOD platform:
Promotion on home pages of local stores (sliders+bricks)
Promotion on iTunes Facebook pages
Spanish & Italian
VOD releases
Belgium day-
and-date
release
French &
German VOD
releases
Spanish
theatrical
release
Italian
theatrical
release
Nov 20
Nov 27
Dec 3
Dec 10
Dec 11
66
Focus on the partnership with MYmovies, the Italian VOD platform (with more than 700.000 daily
page views): Starting from November 10th, Goodbye to Language was launched on many placements
of MyMovies website, which reserved to the movie a wide coverage. MyMovies.it hold a live event
with a big web coverage on the first day of the VOD release (December 11th): a live streaming in a
virtual theatre for 300 viewers. They re-launched each news on their social media pages (Facebook:
more than 300.000 fans. Twitter: 18.500 followers).
67
FOR THOSE IN PERIL by Paul Wright
For Those in Peril (France and Netherlands)
Il superstite (Italy)
Za tych, co na morzu (Poland)
Por Aqueles em Perigo (Portugal)
Directed by Paul Wright (1st feature film)
With George Mackay, Kate Dickie, Nichola Burley
Nationality: UK Year: 2013
Producers: Warp X, Film 4, BFI, Creative Scotland
Genre: drama
Festivals : Semaine de la Critique (Cannes 2013), Edinburgh International Film Festival 2013, Stockholm
International Film Festival, Dinard Festival of British Cinema, BAFTA
Synopsis: Aaron, a young misfit living in a remote Scottish fishing community, is the lone survivor of a strange
fishing accident that claimed the lives of five men including his older brother. Spurred on by sea-going folklore
and local superstition, the village blames Aaron for this tragedy, making him an outcast amongst his own
people. Steadfastly refusing to believe that his brother has died, he sets out to recover him and the rest of men.
Distributed by: Alambique (Portugal), Amstel Films (Netherlands), Distrib Films (France), Nomad Films (Italy)
and Tongariro Releasing (Poland).
International sales: Protagonist Pictures
Film suggested to TIDE by Protagonist Pictures following the 2013 Cannes Festival.
4 day-and-date releases, 1 VOD preview release
5 territories
France, Italy; Netherlands, Poland and Portugal
5 languages
French, Italian, Dutch, Polish and Portuguese.
27 VOD platforms
Multiterritorial: iTunes (5 local stores) and Distrify
France: FilmoTV, La Vod d'Orange
Italy: OwnAir, MyMovies
Netherlands: Videoland, MovieMaxOnline, Mejane, Mubi
Poland: Vod.pl, Kinoplex, Vectra
Portugal: MEO, Vodafone, Screenburn, Vodafone, Optimus, Cabovisao
40 screens (1st week)
68
Marketing
Joint positioning
o Target audience: film fans (Art House)
o Release dates: initially the European releases were grouped in early 2014, but the release
timetables (of distributors and their local competitors) obliged the Portuguese and Italian
distributors to postpone their releases of For Those in Peril.
<--- 15-week cycle --->
For Those in Peril
Release dates
S3
S4
S7
S10
S17
S18
Netherlands
16/01/2014
France*
22/01/2014 (VOD)
12/02/2014 (salle)
VoD
Theatre
Poland
24/01/2014
Italy
06/03/2014
Portugal
24/04/2014
* in France, For Those in Peril was released on VOD 3 weeks (22 January) before the theatrical release
(12 February) and its VOD preview exploitation ceased the day before theatrical release.
o Comparisons:
Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012) by Benh Zeitlin
The Hunt (2012) by Thomas Vinterberg
o Pooled and pan-European promotional tools:
A genuine consensus on the positioning of the film made it possible to:
Fully develop a common visual identity and aim at pan-European awareness: common
poster, trailer, Internet banners and Web site. All the more so in that other distributors
outside the scope of TIDE used the same identity (Non-Stop Entertainment in Sweden and
Soda Pictures in the UK) and helped to maintain live awareness (see below);
Encourage cross-cutting promotion. Thus the shared Web site informed audiences about
different release sites (links to VOD platforms and theatres);
Launch new joint promotion actions: videoseeding (placing of trailer on targeted sites with
advertising message (call to action), actions targeting specialized cinema bloggers (SEO) and
launch of a dedicated operation (with live streaming on Youtube and Dailymotion) of an
interview of Paul Wright, director of For Those in Peril, and the lead actor, Georges MacKay,
moderated by a BBC journalist. This event was used for promotion on social media and
through bloggers.
Local promotion campaigns (and cross-border tools):
The distributors worked to implement cross-cutting strategies:
o In contacts with the press. However the local media did not really cover the event despite the
exceptional character of the releases and the proposal made by the distributors, at the instigation
of TIDE, to involve them in the release by making the film available on line on their sites (following
the model proposed by The Guardian). The local media in fact showed little interest in this
initiative.
69
IO SONO LI by Andrea Segre
Director: Andrea Segre
With: Tao Zhao, Rade Serbedzija
Nationality: Italy Year: 2011
Producers: Jole Film, Aeternam Films
Genre: Drama
Festivals: Venice Film Festival, London Film Festival, 8 ½ - Festa do Cinema Italiano (Lisbon), Panazorean (Faial),
Brussels Film Festival, Festival du Film Européen de Virton, Mooov festival (Turnhout), etc.
Synopsis: Andrea Segre’s intimate drama tells the story of Shun Li, a Chinese immigrant forced to move from
Rome in order to work in a bar on a small island in the Veneto lagoon. Though lonely at first, she meets Bepi, a
Slavic fisherman, nicknamed the Poet, who befriends her. However, the locals are not so happy about this. Tao
Zhao and Rade Serbedzija are impressive as the oddly matched pairing in this evocative drama.
EDAD Distributors: Curzon Film World (UK + Eire), Cinemien (Belgium + The Netherlands), Associação Il
Sorpasso (Portugal)
International sales: Adriana Chiesa
Key arguments why we chose Io Sono Li for EDAD:
- a European film par excellence given its subject matter
- Andrea Segre already involved in expanding the audience for art-house films, having co-founded the
distribution network ZaLab
- 3 European distributors were willing to release the film day-and-date
5 day-and-date releases
Theatrical: 21 June 2013 in the UK and Eire, 17 July 2013 in Belgium, 18 July 2013 in the Netherlands and
30 September 2013 in Portugal
VOD: strictly day-and-date with the theatrical release in the UK and Eire, maximum 2 weeks after the
theatrical release in Belgium, the Netherlands and Portugal
5 territories
UK, Eire, Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal
8 VOD platforms
UK, Eire - Day-and-date: Curzon Home Cinema/ Current: iTunes, Blinkbox, Volta
Belgium, the Netherlands: Belgacom, Cinemalink.tv, Chello
Portugal: Mubi
EDAD
70
Release schedule
Marketing Plan
In all five territories, the film was meant to appeal to the Italian community, but also to a wider
audience made of males and females aged 25 to 55, yet limited to a niche, “art-house” crowd.
Our press campaign emphasized as much as possible that the film was released day and date in
theatres and on demand. It was more focused on general newspapers and magazines in the UK and
Eire (15x5 in The Observer and The Guardian, ½ page in Time Out…) whereas Belgium and the
Netherlands concentrated on more specific film press (VPRO Gids, Filmagenda, De Filmkrant). In the
Netherlands, the film was also advertised on local TV through the AT5 film magazine.
Internet and social networks were used as a core media to promote the film in all five territories.
Online banners and super-headers were displayed on newspapers websites such as theguardian.co.uk
or Ilgiornale.nl. Facebook promoted posts and email newsletters also helped us to raise awareness of
the film being released day and date.
Special, interactive marketing: Curzon Cinemas ran a competition that went live on their
curzoncinemas.com/win page. A partnership was established with London cinema Cine Lumiere who
also ran a competition via their newsletter (50K suscribers) a week prior to the release. Both the UK
and Portugal organised a special screening followed by a Q&A (“Questions & Answers”) with the
director Andrea Segre within the framework of their partnership with Cine Lumiere for Curzon Film
World, and at the Cinemateca Portuguesa, Museu do Cinema for Il Sorpasso.
All five territories shared their experience and sought advice from each other via regular phone calls
and emails as well as in meetings in Berlin and Cannes.
21 June 13
UK + Eire
D&D release
17 Jul 13
Belgium
nearly-D&D release
18 Jul 13
Netherlands
nearly-D&D release
19 Sept 13
Portugal
nearly-D&D release
71
JIMMY P. by Arnaud Desplechin
Director: Arnaud Desplechin
With Benicio Del Toro, Mathieu Amalric,
Nationality: France Year: 2013
Producers: Why Not Productions
Genre: Drama
Festivals: Official Selection, Competition - Festival de Cannes 2013
Synopsis: At the end of World War II, Jimmy Picard, a Native American Blackfoot who fought in France, is
admitted to Topeka Military Hospital in Kansas - an institution specializing in mental illness. Jimmy suffers from
numerous symptoms: dizzy spells, temporary blindness, hearing loss... and withdrawal. In the absence of any
physiological causes, he is diagnosed as schizophrenic. Nevertheless, the hospital management decides to seek
the opinion of Georges Devereux, a French anthropologist, psychoanalyst and specialist in Native American
culture. JIMMY P. (Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian) tells the story of the encounter and developing friendship
between two men who would never normally have met, and who appear to have nothing in common. Together,
they embark on an exploration of Jimmy’s memories and dreams, an experiment they conduct like a couple of
detectives, and with an ever-growing complicity.
Distributors: BiM Distribuzione (Italy), Vertigo (Spain) and Wild Bunch Germany (Germany)
International sales: Wild Bunch
Key arguments in the selection of this title for the Speed Bunch project:
- Arnaud Desplechin is a well-known European director
- JIMMY P benefited from good visibility during the 2013 Cannes Film Festival where it was part of the official
selection.
- Well-known international cast: Benicio del Toro, Mathieu Amalric
2 day-and-date releases and 1 direct-to-VOD release
Theatre: March 20, 2014 in Italy and March 21 in Spain
VOD: March 20 in Italy and March 21 in Spain and Germany
3 territories
Germany, Spain, Italy
3 languages
German, Spanish, Italian
16 VOD platforms
Multiterritorial: iTunes (3 local stores)
Italy: MyMovies, GooglePlay, Infinity, PremiumPlay, Chili, Cubovision
Spain: Yomvi(Canal+), Wuaki, Filmin, Imagenio, Ono, Nubeox
Germany: Maxdome
13 cinemas
SPEED BUNCH
72
Marketing
Common release date: choice of a common release date taking into account applicable regulations, the
respective line-ups and markets of each distributor and following one rule: release the film on all territories
and all medias concerned within the shortest possible time-frame.
Shared visual identity: use of the same designer to draw up a joint graphics charter. However, freedom for
each distributor to adapt to his own market and the expectations of his local audience.
Promotion on VOD platforms:
o Multiterritorial platform: iTunes
Promotion on home pages of local stores (sliders+bricks)
Promotion on iTunes Facebook pages
o Local platforms: highlighting on their home pages, promotion in their newsletters
Promotion on social media of distributors' VOD platforms
Web campaign: targeted by territory with banners mentioning the VOD release and also the theatrical release
for the countries concerned.
Press coverage with articles in national newspapers. Same difficulty as was encountered during the first release
of THE SPIRIT OF ’45 concerning coverage of the experimental aspect of day-and-date releases. Few articles in
fact mentioned this information.
Focus on the partnership with MYmovies, the Italian VOD platform: creation of an official site, cover of the
newsletter, post-roll trailer 14 days before the release (140.000 hits), highlighting on the home page, banners,
Facebook and Twitter posts and also an exceptional VOD preview on release day. On this occasion, MYMOVIES
pre-bought 300 VOD transactions and offered them to the first 300 applicants (sold out several days before
release).
20 March
Day-and-date theatre/VOD release
ITALY
21 March
Day-and-date theatre/VOD release
SPAIN
Direct-to-VOD release
GERMANY
73
A CIEL OUVERT by Mariana Otero
Like An Open Sky (International)
A Cielo Abierto (Spain)
Под открито небе (Bulgaria)
Directed by Mariana Otero
Country: France Production year: 2013
Producers: Archipel 33, Les Films du Fleuve
Production Budget: 666,339 euros
Genre: Documentary
Festivals: Gindou Film Festival, Zurich Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival
Synopsis: On the franco-belgian border, there’s a unique place that takes in children with mental and social
problems. Day after day, the adults try to understand the enigma that each one of them represents and
without ever imposing anything on them, invent the solutions that will help them to live in peace, case by case.
Through their stories ‘Like An Open Sky’ reveals their singular vision of the world to us.
Distributed by: Filmin & Cameo (Spain), Art Fest & NetCinema (Bulgaria)
Sales Agent: Doc & Film International
1. Marketing
Global positioning
2 day & date releases
2 territories
Spain, Bulgaria
2 languages
Spanish, Bulgarian
4 VOD platforms
Spain: Filmin, iTunes , Ara TV
Bulgaria: NetCinema
7 prints (1st week)
74
o Targeted audience: mental health professionals and families who suffer from this kind of psychological
disorder
Release dates :
A ciel ouvert
Premiere
Theatrical release
VOD release
DVD release
Spain
16/10/2014 (Barcelona)
17/10/2014 (Madrid)
24/10/2014
24/10/2014
03/12/2014
Bulgaria
23/01/2014
23/01/2014
23/01/2014
-
o Similar titles:
Etre et avoir / To Be and To Have (2002) by Nicolas Philibert
Entre nos mains / Into Our Own Hands (2010) by Mariana Otero
o Transnational Marketing & Promotion:
At a first glance, ‘Like An Open Sky’ seemed to be the hardest film to market out of the three that
compose the Streams Day & Date project. First of all because of its subject: the Lacanian approach of
autism. Then because of its genre; indeed documentaries are not very popular among audiences at the
theatre. To top it off, even though the director Mariana Otero won many awards for her previous
films, she is not widely known on an international scale.
Given the nature of the documentary, we reached out to the Ecole de la Cause Freudienne, an
association of psychoanalysts that was already involved in the production and distribution of the film
in France. This association has many branches worldwide and so they helped us to get in touch with a
lot of professionals interested in the subject of the film.
o The director also played an important part in the promotion of the film since she attended the two
premieres organised in Barcelona and Madrid, and participated in a Q&A session.
o We used the same promotional assets (trailer, poster…) for the theatrical, VOD and DVD releases.
2. Exploitation results
Theatrical
NUMBER OF
THEATERS
(1st WEEK)
NUMBER OF
THEATERS
(TOTAL)
NUMBER OF
ADMISSIONS
(1st week)
NUMBER OF
ADMISSIONS
(4th week)
NUMBER OF
ADMISSIONS
(8th week)
NUMBER OF
ADMISSIONS
(TOTAL)
GROSS
BOX-OFFICE
Spain
4
4
132
0
0
207
€1,413
Bulgaria
3
3
105
0
0
105
€366
Total
7
8
237
0
0
312
€1,779
VOD
NUMBER OF
PLATFORMS
PLATFORMS
VIEWS
(Weeks 1-4)
VIEWS
(Weeks 4-8)
VIEWS (TOTAL)
GROSS RECEIPTS
Spain
3
Filmin, Ara TV,
Itunes
93
20
121
+ 37 itunes
€295.24
iTunes receipts excluded
Bulgaria
1
NetCinema.bg
38
4
42
€42
Total
131
24
163
€337.24
DVD
UNITS SOLD
GROSS RECEIPTS
Spain
562
€2,689.69
75
MES SEANCES DE LUTTE by Jacques Doillon
Mis Escenas de Lucha (Spain)
Mes Séances de Lutte (Belgium)
Под открито небе (Bulgaria)
Directed by Jacques Doillon
With Sara Forestier, James Thierrée
Country: France Production year: 2012
Genre: Drama
Festivals: Berlin International Film Festival, CPHPIX, Taipei Film Festival, Paris Cinéma, São Paulo International
Film Festival
Synopsis: A bucolic summer landscape in the French countryside. A nameless couple meet. The woman has
returned to her village following the death of her father, who never loved her. Here she meets a man a sort
of Pan who spends his days farming and writing. Every encounter culminates in the need for them to confront
each other physically. The man and woman embark on a playful exploration, each making use of their own
weapons. The verbal sparring intensifies with shoving, punching and wrestling, escalating to the point where
their frequent fighting sessions become real love battles…
Distributed by: Filmin & Cameo (Spain), Art Fest & NetCinema (Bulgaria), Universcine Belgium (Belgium)
Sales agent: Doc & Film International
3 day & date releases
3 territories
Spain, Bulgaria, Belgium
3 languages
Spanish, Bulgarian, French
6 VOD platforms
Spain: Filmin, iTunes , Ara TV
Bulgaria: NetCinema
Belgium: Universcine Belgium, iTunes, Belgacom
11 prints (1st week)
76
Marketing
Global positioning
o Targeted audience: