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The number one problem for every indie or guerilla filmmaker out there is: “Where the heck do I find a distributor for my low budget film so people can see it?” In other words, “will I make enough money to pay off all those damn credit cards I ran up to make my film?” Yup, the age old question of what to do with that film after you’ve finished shooting and editing it.
And you thought making a film was the hard part?
Well, like a lot of you, I’ve asked myself those same questions a number of times and have even taken the dreaded path of self distribution. Over the course of following that path, I ran into a very cool little website, Caachi.com, that offers an interesting take on digital or online film distribution. You may be surprised by what I discovered.
Caachi (www.caachi.com) is a fairly new entrant into the world of online guerilla or indie film distribution, and they go about their service in a pretty interesting way. First up, they do what a lot of other sites do and offer a low budget or indie film (short, feature or music video) in DVD quality online for a small fee (set by the filmmakers themselves). They also give users the ability to download a DVD quality version of purchased films to their hard drive, where you can then burn onto your own DVDs at your leisure. Next us, Caachi takes a fairly small cut of the viewing/downloading fees. Caachi gives their independent / guerila / low budget filmmakers 75% of the proceeds, which for filmmakers is fantastic. Indie filmmakers are finally able to get a reasonable return on any sale. And last, Caachi has set up a system where any website can become an affiliate distributor of any (or all) of the Caachi film catalog.
That, my friends, is what makes Caachi interesting for the low budget or guerilla filmmaker. You now have access to any web page, blog or social network on the entire internet to advertise and sell your film. Even better, the Caachi “vidget” (video widget) allows a web owner to show off a film’s poster image, a brief description or even its trailer, all with a very simple and easy to paste piece of code.
Will placing a film on Caachi alone make an indie filmmaker rich beyond the dreams of Michael Eisner? Um, sadly, no. What it will do, however, is give guerilla and low budget filmmakers a fantastic marketing and sales tool to use in their eternal search to have their low budget film shown before the masses. It gives them a great little marketing piece to encourage webmasters to run their trailer or film info by offering them a 20% commission on any sales made off of their site. This will encourage reviewers, fans and even internet-saavy mothers to put your trailer on their websites.
My only negative remarks come from the look of the Caachi website itself. It looks very much like a stock OSCommerce template site and really isn’t as slick as it should be. For an idea as cool as it is, and in an industry as cool as film, I really expected to see something a lot coolor and more user friendly. My advice to the powers-that-be at Caachi is to get yourself a site redesign and fast! I’d also like to see some sort of a scrolling vidget, similar to the Amazon Carousel Widget, allowing webmasters to list multiple films as part of a single piece of code.
For those indie, guerilla or low budget filmmakers out there with a film to sell and no clue how to get distribution, check out www.Caachi.com for a nifty option to add to your sales and marketing utility belt. Price your film with sales in mind ($9.99 for an indie short film you download is a bit crazy…but $4.99 for a feature might be the sweet spot for you) and with a little inventive self-promotion you might find yourself actually able to pay off those credit cards you used to finance your film. All thanks to the fine folks at Caachi.
Well, that’s it for me for now. I’m going to go and watch a couple of films over on Caachi (Mind Flesh looks interesting…and it has boobies in it!). Until next time, Keep Shooting!
- Mat Nastos, Film Sensei
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