Tuesday, March 25, 2014

How did they get those things into distribution?

Plan Nine From Outer Space must have been a tremendous inspiration to filmmakers. When those words appear on screen, Distributors Corporation of America Release, and then you saw what followed, people must have thought you could get pretty much anything into theaters. Ed Wood's widow has said that he never made any money from his movies, but he did get them all into distribution except for the one the lab kept because he couldn't pay the bill.

I've also seen people who never had any thought of ever making a movie watch Plan 9 and say that, if they had made it, they would probably be proud of it. They say that as they laugh at it, noting the danger of filmmaking---that you could be blind to how incredibly bad your movie is.

But you also had people like Doris Wishman. She made sex movies which she kept insisting weren't sex movies. I hear that she even directed some porno films, but she would leave the room when they were filming the sex scenes. She either never figured out how to record live sound or she never bothered doing it, and she also didn't bother post-synching her films properly, so she would film all the dialog scenes so we would never see the actors as they were actually speaking.

Yet Wishman did pretty well. She had worked for a distribution company before she started making her own movies, so she knew who to go to to get the things released.

I told a film student I knew to go to work in video distribution for that reason. Making the movie is fairly easy now. He needed to focus his attention on distribution if he wanted to get anywhere.

Like everyone else, he ignored my sensible advice.

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