Glasgow Film Theatre and Edinburgh’s Filmhouse have joined forces with shareable video-on-demand inventors Distrify to offer online streamings of curated films.
In what’s been described as a pioneering move, the two Scottish independent cinemas will be the first venues in the UK to work together to make available a specially selected online film programme.
Each cinema will host a new online viewing platform on their website – the GFT Player and the Filmhouse Player.
The project has been devised so that these two popular cinemas can reach beyond their walls and engage with audiences in other areas, with those who cannot visit in person and with people who have an interest in curated cinema with a Scottish, UK and international focus.
Films will be available to stream 24/7 and can be watched on computers, tablets and mobiles anywhere in the UK or Ireland. Streaming prices will start at £3.49.
Allison Gardner, head of cinemas at GFT, said: “Our reasons for pioneering the curated programme online model are two-fold.
“There are an ever-growing number of films available to us and with our screens already working very hard, we needed to find a way to ensure that great films were not missing out on the exposure we can give them.
“Secondly, not everyone has access to cinemas like GFT and Filmhouse, or indeed time to go to the cinema when it suits them.’
Rod White, head of Filmhouse, added: “The Player gives us the opportunity to provide an extra screen – open all hours – showing films that we would not otherwise have the room to screen, or audiences simply couldn’t make it along to, or may have missed on the big screen.”
A slate of films will be offered online from November, carefully chosen by experienced GFT and Filmhouse programmers, to complement their cinema screenings.
The Players will feature new releases (available to stream alongside their screenings in the cinema) such as music documentary Sound it Out and Japanese comedy-drama Rent-a-Cat, favourite films that audiences may have missed on the big screen, and exclusive additional content.
Having teamed up with video-on-demand providers Distrify, a unique feature of the Distrify Player is that anyone can embed it on their website or on their Facebook page or Twitter feed, thereby extending the reach of each cinema’s brand and broadening their audiences. An affiliate’s share of 10% is available to anyone who shares the film in this way.
Andy Green, COO of Distrify, said: “Audiences are finding films they want online and we want to offer cinema tickets as well as VOD, the idea is that a choice increases sales of both.
“Adding the curatorial voice of GFT and Filmhouse creates trust for an audience and adds an extra revenue stream for the cinemas.”