Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

Another indie movie praises the torrentsphere


We Are The Strange” is, as the title would imply, a deeply weird animated story featuring puppets, 8-bit video game graphics and a whole lotta oddness. The movie recently showed up on numerous torrent sites, but instead of going ape and demanding the Internet be shut down, the film’s creator, M dot Strange, praised pirates for getting his film distributed via a message he posted on Youtube. The filmmakers behind “The Man from Earth” also recently thanked the torrentsphere when their movie went from obscurity to minor download hit.

I think these isolated incidents are pointing towards something bigger. Most movies don’t ever make their money back, aren’t played at festivals, and can’t find their audience. The Internet is changing that, and P2P networks are a great way to distribute content that wouldn’t otherwise be seen. Just look at Infest Wisely, the no-budget Canadian film from Jim Munroe and friends that ended up playing at two different festivals BECAUSE it was released on the internet and via bittorrent. Films are rapidly spinning out of Hollywood’s stranglehold on distribution, and not a moment too soon.

Warren Frey is a journalist, freelance writer, podcaster, video producer, and all-around media consultant currently based in Vancouver, Canada. His written work has appeared in such publications as Metro Vancouver, the Westender, Mac | Life and the Japan Times.

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