My friend Leo pointed me towards One Too Many Mornings, a really truly indie that’s playing at Sundance this year. As it turns out, I know the director (Michael Mohan) through his work at the filmmakers’ lab.
The movie looks great in its lo-fi simplicity, but what interests me even more is how the filmmakers are approaching distribution.
In the wake of The Nines, I’ve written several times about how getting a movie made is substantially easier than getting a movie seen. The mythical Sundance experience — fierce bidding wars to land the next indie smash — are over. Most films don’t sell, and the few that do struggle to reach even a tiny audience.
Some filmmakers like Todd Sklar have opted to self-distribute, essentially taking the indie band approach and touring theaters around the country. That’s great if you enjoy being in a van.
The Mornings team is doing what I would try: skipping theatrical altogether. The day after the premiere, you can download their film or get the DVD. You can even buy a piece of the set, or buy the filmmakers lunch.
They’re not going to make a lot of money, but my hunch is they will be able to get a lot more people to see their movie this way. That should be the main goal of any indie.