Maxdome 50 Shades Of Grey




UPDATED: A practical Guide kommen sie Distributing Your film Internationally: who Else is Out There in the international Digital room Beyond the globalen “Big Guns”?

image credit: tim Green aka atoach

Note: This article was originally published in May, 2020. We space updating it as von March 2021, since sachen continue to evolve hinweisen lightning speed in the digital sector. Every March 2021 updates möchte be in red.

Du schaust: Maxdome 50 shades of grey

The ongoing pflicht of TFC’s Digital distribution Guide is to list every platform one could possibly or fairly be on. That a very ambitious list, but notfall necessarily exhaustive because there room thousands des tiny or notfall completely reliable platforms (and, conversely, networks with non-linear versions von their broadcasts ~ above VOD) the we have chosen not to include, however striving as much as possible zu list the most credible or an essential platforms whereby one’s film could probably be.

But which platforms space actually good targets zum arthouse film, especially the kinds von indie content that TFC normalerweise handles, the pay enough money to potentially make sense in in international hybride distribution strategy? und how execute we look at at die platforms and film sales an general an light of the “new normal” that we’re every in?

For this, we might think of no better personen to ask than our dear friend und colleague Wendy Bernfeld, Founder und Managing Director von Rights Stuff and co-author des our 2nd case research book in 2014 marketing Your film Outside ns U.S. (free on amazonas Kindle and Apple iBooks). Wendy specializes an Library and Original inhalt acquisition/distribution, international strategy / deal advice, for traditional media (film, TV, pay TV), digital media (Internet/IPTV, VOD, mobile, OTT/devices), and web/cross-platform/transmedia programming, and also active ~ above various film festival / advisory boards, such as IDFA, Binger film Institute, Seize the Night, outdoor FilmFest, und others, including TFC! Follow herstellung on Twitter:
wbernfeld. Deshalb without additional ado, here ist Wendy’s update:

I’m not a distributor or sales agent, acquisition IP, however rather, a digital sector consultant. Most von the time ns a buyer/biz dev exec zum platforms, often prior to they launch, or afterwards wie they role out into neu regions, genres, und biz models. The rest des the time ns on her side von the table, help rightsholders/producers/sales agents/festivals transaction beyond ns usual suspects.

Since my last TFC blog on die topic, ns platform-buying sector has actually continued zu grow and by jetzt explode—particularly in SVOD and AVOD, together with a much more recent upsurge in TVOD variations and innovations driven über COVID-19 (Premium VOD, virtual cinema, and festivals, both online and hybrid)u.

Explosion in the VOD ar Pre Covid-19

This explosion came from miscellaneous sources:

the competitive appetites des mainstream “Big Guns,” i.e. Netflix, amazon and now, die newer usa entrants, such together HBOMax, AppleTV+, Disney+/Hulu, Peacock, Viacom/CBS bei SVOD, und, TubiTV, in AVOD (most of which will also roll out internationally in 2020-21);Overseas demand from the scores of EMEA/International ar regional und multiregional VODs (via telecom, cable, OTT, TV networks, cinemas und consumer electronic devices types) who strive kommen sie be‘head on’ competitors;and a wealth of complementary VODs, drilling down right into a specific theme, genre, or niche target audience, which are lower-priced and positioning themselves together “stackable” add-ons weil das the household.

The beauty, beauty is, beyond the globalen Big Guns, most des the VODs still license titles non-exclusively, so one kann sell across multiple windows and regions, through TVOD, SVOD, und AVOD, well balanced with traditional.

Although some of the earlier indie film and doc services sadly dropped away because the last blog, more oase stabilized, morphed, and matured.

Some arthouse SVOD web page (, UniversCine und FilmIn Spain zum example) schutz been around zum more than a decade. Other neu entrants oase found a foothold, although are still in early job (e.g. Cinetree).Some were currently credibly funding or co-funding Originals (Movistar+, FilmIn, Viaplay, Stan, Curiosity Stream).Others one of two people went deeper into niches, or expanded kommen sie wider regions, (e.g. American sites adding international regions, or angry versa), and/or added much more genres of buying, and/or added other unternehmen models—hybrids an TVOD, SVOD, and AVOD). Examples des these encompass Rakuten, Mubi, UniversCine/Uncut, All4/WalterPresents, SundanceNow/Shudder, and

Already, before the advent von COVID-19, the ‘Holy Grail’ von a Netflix or amazonas deal was increasingly challenging zum most indies, since, in general:

more focus was on communication Originals, and/or collection (rather than feature films or docs);and zum features, an ext focus was on stars/recognition quite than niche films.Non-USA films became a enlarge priority, as die platforms increase EMEA and international localization und had zu deal through regulatory/political inhalt requirements (e.g. Airtime and funding).

Thus, the had currently been critical weil das indies zu go beyond the Big firearms to seen who else was out there abroad, buying and sometimes funding.

Since covid19

It is no surprise that audiences bei lockdown globally oase caused a dramatic surge an VOD/TV viewing. With manufacturing halted, and festivals and cinemas close up door or morphing online, the platforms and networks have been promptly running v their inventories. As bei upside, domestically and abroad, more communication are jetzt more open to wider types des buying than before, including an enhanced appetite zum festival, indie films, und docs.

“Big Guns”

Even the largest und mainstream players are turning jetzt to pick curated library und classics – zum example, in recent mainly Netflix license is granted packages von French/other auteur classics from MK2 France.

Assume zum the moment you are in the lucky position to have interest in your film from a global Netflix or amazonas Prime type, indigenous which the highest-priced deals kann result. However, in addition to it comes restrictive exclusivity and various other window holdbacks. Heavier angestellter marketing ist required to help viewers uncover your film und hear your message (assuming that is important to you, quite than nur the huge license fees).

As before, keep in mind ns domestic transaction offerings space one preis tag, however do freundin agree to automatically tack top top “ROW” (rest des world) to ns domestic transaction offer? absolutely easier und where ns deal ist non-exclusive, so an much easier call—but if exclusivity ist required, jetzt more than ever it zu sein key, if your film is in hot demand, kommen sie consider international possibilities/valuation from these competitors und complementary sites abroad, across different regions, many platforms, and successive windows.

That strategy, if sie choose to follow it, ist WAY much more work, as there are a dizzying array von opportunities zu explore. However, if freundin are willing zu take die time und effort – whether directly, or via your agents or a combination (hybrid) des digital und traditional reps—to go beyond die usual suspects, freundin achieve a new pipeline weil das the much longer term. At the very least, ns intel from ns patchwork des offers allows zum better negotiation von the ROW deal requested zurück home.

Netflix has quietly und significantly launched a straight version von its SVOD leistungen to SVOD subscribers in France. If this exciting trial (sort of like in ‘everything old zu sein new again’ experiment) goes well, Netflix may well increase this linear programming approach zu other regions. There zu sein awareness particularly in some nations that consumers might be struggling with too many choices and would prefer to ‘lean back’ top top a much more curated programming experience that consists of scheduled direct viewing, etc…and top top a associated note, some various other SVODs, such as Docubay in India, have so launched a straight option zum their viewers/subscribers. Let’s watch this space!

Netflix so announced recently an January that it möchte focus top top premiering one neu feature film per week (as opposed kommen sie earlier, wherein there was more of in emphasis on series originals).

As von late February 2021, amazon just suddenly shut off ‘short form content’ und ‘documentaries’ from ns self-upload früh Video direct program, causing good concern in the sector as to ns fate des indie docs that space ‘unsolicited.’ We room looking into whether this deshalb applies to distributors, aggregators, and other sources, as well.

TVOD sector: and newer festival streaming, PVOD, virtual cinema

The covid19 era has, on die plus side, mobilized the industry zu break away from timeless assumptions and has promptly sparked development (particularly in historic philosophies to film distribution) weil das new releases.

Innovations: return beyond ns scope des this blog to einzelheiten this, I’ll note my KUDOS zu the film industry bei the face des these an overwhelming times, for the current resurgence an TVOD und related developments borne out von COVID-19:

Festival Streaming: Festivals/markets that were cancelled are moving commercially and creatively online (e.g. Neu Zealand International film Fest)Premium TVOD: an lieu of cinema exhibition, some movies are walk straight zu platforms (e.g. Never Rarely occasionally Always, etc.) although HBO Max and various other U.S.-based platforms are skipping theatrical und going straight kommen sie VOD releases—a sick point weil das some indie filmmakers an the U.S.—one should note that for HBO Europe, this is not expected to be the case until later in 2021 because HBO Max is not accessible yet in Europe. The erste region in 2021 that HBO max will beginning internationally bei will it is in Latin America. HBO Europe will still continue as it is until later this year.Virtual Cinema: an lieu of Theatrical, release Currents/events online und sharing profits with Cinemas (e.g. ModernFilm UK, KinowMarquee USA,) und other technologies like Drive-ins! (Vilnius airport!)

All require open, nimble and flexible thinking, balancing traditional und digital sector audiences and stakeholders, windows, revenues, und marketing—all punkt lightning speed.

There ist no doubt in my mind that some von these will continue, hinweisen least in modified form, post COVID-19…although we all acknowledge there ist no gesamt substitute for the cinema experience and in-person contact.

Traditional TVOD: weil das current und library titles, typically nonexclusive, and on rev share, the windows and strategies remain mostly unchanged indigenous our previously blogs:

DON’T STOP at ONE deal – i.e. If doing in iTunes or similar TVOD deal, try to so go zu as many von the rest out there that sie can,Including TVODs from cinema-related chains (e.g. PatheThuis NL), telecoms/cable (e.g. Vodafone/Ziggo, Orange) PayTV und Free TV (e.g. Sky, RTL, All4, UniversCine, etc.),across numerous regions, and mainstream and niche/theme sites deswegen the profits (and marketing buzz) cumulates.SVOD/AVOD Internationally

The PayTV/SVOD sector is ausblüten where most von the revenues for filmmakers arise. Weil das library deals, usually die sweet spot zum SVOD is for films 2-5 years old, und AVOD is usually older.

Although there are an theory over 3000 VOD platforms bei the eu alone (not also considering die rest des the world), hinweisen Rights Stuff, we have tendency to focus on a curated fraction, e.g. Those 50-100 that room reputable, und yet also commercial, paying proper flat patent fees (the usual zum SVOD/AVOD und ‘multimodel’ sites).

Of course, there room some exceptions where flat fees/MG’s are much less customary or required due zu platform size/scale (such as for the larger vereinigte staaten sites like Hulu, Amazon,, However, as a basic rule in EMEA/international, one needs something an ext than a rev share an smaller SVODs and AVOD.

Platform instances (a non-exhaustive list for Indie Films und Docs)

Below is a snapshot list of some examples von platforms (whether mainstream, or thematic: i.e. Niche/genre specific) past USA. These schutz recently bought und are offen to buying quality indie films, art house, or docs from usa indies, usually v some festival or other high acclaim – there is no necessarily having local europäische union releases, language versions, or big stars (although ns latter help elevate die appetite und deal size).

CAVEATS: This list ist NOT exhaustive, but an illustrative photo at this time. Over there are numerous more, not listed below, consisting of mainstream or an extremely local language sites, or those in various niches notfall usually des immediate interest kommen sie TFC filmmakers.

To aid bring the down zu earth, I’ve supplied as one criteria: they schutz done a deal with a niche indie/doc movie housing from the USA in the recent past.

Also keep in mind:

Platforms tastes, needs, und appetites (and vain positioning) are constantly changing.So, on ns plus side, even if a title ist rejected now, one can circle back 6 months danach (if the rejection reason was more that die platform was overstocked bei a group or wanne budget timing).But obviously do not circle rückseitig if they rejected the film because they didn’t favor it/not suitable weil das them.Your film benefits most overseas if that travels well culturally, has strong acclaim, or is particularly topical and/or various other marketable appeal.Language ist very verwandt, angemessen but walk not schutz to it is in a barrier:English OV films generally travel easiest first to other English regions/sites (Canada, UK, IE, AU, NZ, south Africa);then following easiest, is subtitling-friendly regions (like Nordic, Benelux) also as the pure cinephile arthouse and documentary website (where audiences are accustomed zu subtitles);In other regions such as Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and Brazil, dubbing requirements have to be factored in. That said, if you schutz a few potentially interested platforms in one region/language, it is easier to assess value des dubbing costs—no need zu do in advance.Politically: usa films are, frankly, notfall at die top von some eu platform priorities punkt the augenblicke – dafür be realistic in your expectations.For example, eu platforms now have inhalt country von origin quotas (official und unofficial) zu balance, ranging from 20-50% in practice.This way after a platform has zuerst bought that MPAA studio major output transaction (if applicable), and then bought from its own eu or neighborhood minimajor und indie distributors, und then bought its own direct local indie filmmakers, then und only then kann sein they schutz room weil das ad hoc cherrypicked vereinigte staaten von amerika indie sector films.

Caveats aside: let’s look weist some platforms that have, despite the above, bought vereinigte staaten von amerika indies selectively an recent past. The thematics (niches) room usually noted first, together sales to mainstreamers are less regular (but part are ausblüten listed).

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curated nett houseMultiregion • SVOD, some TVOD | broadened most recently to India und ever-innovating, such just like its MubiGo cinema cross-marketing initiatives and its “Day and Date” or other theatrical partnerships v UK indie nett cinemas. Expanded beyond merely day-and-date kommen sie include “virtual cinema” offerings. Mubi has also expanded their library, und expanded zu more regions as well.
arthousedate und date TVOD | Expanded beyond mere day-and-date to include “virtual cinema” offerings.
AMC’s Sundance Now
indie seriesSVOD | has expanded beyond North America to ns UK and Ireland
horrorUK, USA, some other europäische union • SVOD | has actually moved also into Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand. Later bei 2020 that started funding Originals.
docsUK | Nick Fraser (ex bbq Storyville). Although ausblüten live online hasn’t been actively buying or capital lately, unfortunately. We’ll watch this space as the morphs through different reorganization/investment stages.
BritishUSA, UK • SVOD | content that features British und English colonies, part exceptions. AcornTV has increased beyond ns U.S. Und UK to deshalb include Canada, Latin America, Spain, Australia, neu Zealand, die Nordics, the Netherlands and South Africa. They also have been resources some Originals again. Lock are placing themselves against die competitors in the Brit/Anglo space—such together BritBOX (BBC, ITV, Channel4) und are buying from wider sources und regions to differentiate themselves.
More Mainstream
occasional indie titlesmultimodel | All4 / Film4 / Channel4
Walter Presents
episodicSVOD, AVOD | Walter Presents zu sein mainly concentrated on episodic from outside UK, notfall films or docs. Channel 4’s Walter Presents collection SVOD/AVOD has expanded regions past UK, Ireland, ns U.S., and Australia kommen sie Belgium, Italy and New Zealand, together well.
NowTV von Sky
mainstreamPAY/SVOD/TVOD | BSkyB/Sky/SkyNow. Rare, unless there zu sein a location connection/rep/acclaim/release
mainstreamSVOD | jetzt launched in the UK
Australia/New ZealandNiche
docsSVOD, AVOD • AU, NZ, Southest Asia | in 2020, iwonder also funded in Original during die pandemic that might be a one-off or may be followed über more, yet it is still in interesting development for creators wie buyers anfang to obtain involved an funding…we’ll clock this space.
SBS welt Movies Network
world cinemaAVOD and TV • Australia | AVOD arm of SBS TV / VOD. SBS welt Movies is now only AVOD und TV, notfall SVOD anymore. They still focus on films from external Australia (world cinema and foreign language cinema).
More Mainstream
mainstreamSVOD • Australia | Channel 9’s SVOD. Stan SVOD in Australia has greatly increased both its number of subscribers and its compete position, und continues to fonds Originals. Bei early 2021, Stan announced a partnership with Walter gift for in expanded drama slate.
mainstreamSVOD • neu Zealand | merger with competitor Lightbox. Neu Zealand’s Neon and Lightbox services schutz merged into one SVOD, blieb called Neon, run von parent Sky new Zealand. Neon zu sein not zu be perplexed with die Neon (Neon Rated) distributor in the U.S.
mainstreamSVOD • neu Zealand | merger with competitor Neon. Neu Zealand’s Neon und Lightbox services schutz merged into one SVOD, referred to as Neon, run von parent Sky neu Zealand.
SVOD/TVOD • the Netherlands
PVOD/Virtual Cinema/SVOD/TVOD • Benelux | Uncut and Universciné oase merged their SVOD offerings and rebranded right into a new hybrid Benelux (Belgium, Luxembourg, die Netherlands) leistungen called “Sooner,” i beg your pardon is so in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. They so have to be active in select virtual cinema offerings.
PVOD/Virtual Cinema/SVOD/TVOD • Belgium | Uncut and Universciné have merged into a new hybrid SVOD dienstleistungen called “Sooner” (see Uncut, above, and Sooner, below).
SVOD | Uncut und Universciné schutz merged into this new hybrid SVOD service an Belgium, Luxembourg, ns Netherlands, Germany, Austria, und Switzerland (see UniversCiné und Uncut, above).
LGBTQSVOD •The Netherlands | (separate indigenous OUTtv in Canada). OutTV bei the Netherlands (not kommen sie be puzzled with OUTtv an Canada) has actually expanded to wider regions (Benelux, Sweden, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Israel, Spain, and Central/Eastern Europe.) ns platform owners von OutTV an The Netherlands have deshalb bought Cinemien, die local nett house Benelux distributor, und will it is in consolidating offerings in platforms und content licensing in future. Clock this space.
More Mainstream
TVOD/SVOD • Belgium
RTLs4 / Videoland
multimodelTVOD/SVOD/AVOD und TV • the Netherlands | deshalb funding (local) Originals
Movies & Series
SVOD/TVOD • ns Netherlands | indigenous Vodafone/Ziggo
Film1 (SPI International)
PAY/SVOD • the Netherlands | now part of Central eastern Europe/UK-related SPI international sites Filmbox and Filmbox Arthouse
Pathé Thius
TVOD • ns Netherlands | safety spinoff Pathé feuer cinemas an the Netherlands. Pathe Thuis in The Netherlands funded its zuerst original. Bei interesting development from ‘mere’ buyer to jetzt funder.
Dutch public broadcastingSVOD • die Netherlands | just occasional non-Dutch buying
SVOD, some TVOD | Spain/Mexico/Portugal. Deshalb now resources select Originals.
Planet Horror
horrorSVOD | durch AMC
More Mainstream
Movistar (Telefonica)
PAY/SVOD | Spain / Latin America
Rakuten (formerly
multimodel | Spain, Beneflux, various other EU. Rakuten increased its focus beyond SVOD, TVOD, zu increased AVOD/OTT offerings (e.g., durch connected TVs), and has funded a couple of Originals bei more mainstream category (previously, it had actually been ‘merely’ a buyer).
TVOD/SVOD / TracePlay
SVOD | Afro.urban theme, millennials, so in UK, Africa/global diaspora
La Cinetek
docsSVOD | TENK docs SVOD is bei France, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxembourg, und (most recently) Quebec bei Canada.
More Mainstream
AVOD | France, Germany, us (now part of Viacom). Pluto AVOD (part des Viacom group) expanded kommen sie more regions, beyond Germany, U.S. And France to also include Latin America, Spain, Canada, the UK, and Brazil. It ist expected to launch bei Italy later bei 2021.
Orange, OCS
multimodel | mainstream multimodel but deshalb selective higher-end arthouse and indies
SVOD | CanalPlay SVOD has been discontinued, but they ausblüten offer CanalSERIES, which, in addition to France, has deshalb since expanded kommen sie Poland.
docsSVOD/AVOD | via Discovery Network. DPLAY SVOD has expanded to more regions, and so its new service feuer variation SVOD, Discovery+, in the UK.
More Mainstream
Viaplay / Viafree
TVOD/SVOD/AVOD and PAY/FREE | typically mainstream, and local, however some indie buying native abroad. Viaplay Nordics (SVOD und multimodel) announced a launch bei the U.S. (and also in ns Baltics, later an 2021). This möchte amount kommen sie a high volume von Originals deals und coproductions (digital) with various other players, including collection producers in the U.S. Und Canada.
HBO Europe
PAY/SVOD | main Eastern Europe, Nordics, Spain, Portugal. HBO Europe remains for the time being, together it is not yet ns full-on HBO maximal that ns U.S. Zu sein offering. As provided above, HBO Max’s zuerst international launch will be bei Latin America, and then various other regions bei the eu will monitor later in 2021.
SVOD/TVOD and broader OTT
SVOD | Austria. Removed this from ns active interest offering list for U.S. Indies, together their programming modell has recently narrowed/intensified to films specific to the shirt region rather than from wider sources abroad. Lock are very active and good top quality but notfall buying (much) in terms von U.S. Indies these days.
More Mainstream
Joyn / Joyn Plus
SVOD/TVOD and broader OTT | Germany. Maxdome zu sein merging into it. Joyn+ SVOD has started funding German Originals, not just ‘buying.’
Central east Europe / Middle east / RussiaNiche
Filmbox / Filmbox Arthouse
PAY/SVOD | main Eastern Europe, UK. Filmbox direkte has now evolved as des Feb. 2021 zu Filmbox+, instead of FilmBox Extra and expanding their dienstleistungen offerings an content (film, docs, etc.) und tech sports (apps, channel). Filmbox ArtHouse continues, together do various other thematic channel strands.
More Mainstream
StarzPlay Arabia
SVOD | StarzPlay MENA has expanded kommen sie OTT bei other europäische union regions, part that room direct-to-consumer (e.g., apps und online), and others über telecom/cable carrier partners. In its entirety their pistole reach as of Jan. 2021 is 55 regions.
Mnet Movies
PAY/SVOD | Africa
TVOD | Africa
SVOD | Africa. In 2021, there wollen be progressively African-focused content, und therefore less appetite zum internationally-sourced indie material, return there möchte be some exceptions (e.g., zum African-filmed or coproduced content).
SVOD | Russia
animeSVOD, AVOD | Crunchyroll has added AVOD in addition to SVOD, und is now global.
docsSVOD, Linear | India. As detailed above, DocuBay has added linear channel option beyond mere SVOD.
More Mainstream
Alibaba / Youku
multimodel | China
LGBTQSVOD | (different from OutTV Netherlands). Canada’s OUTtv, beyond North America, is deshalb in southern Africa und New Zealand. It also has started funding Originals.
More Mainstream
SVOD | Canada. Crave has included a French language (Québécois) variation.

OTHER: klasse there are countless other international micro-niche sites you kann sell kommen sie non-exclusively, such together kids, short form episodic/webseries, wildlife, expats/diaspora, lifestyle, gardening, dance, millennials, reality, hobbies, and series, but as they room generally notfall applicable for most TFC filmmakers, i don’t perform them here.

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In 2021, much more micro-niche thematic website continue kommen sie abound, such together children’s content (Hopster, v multiple rivals around die world), wildlife committed sites (Love Nature), expats/diaspora (Afroland, ZeeTV), nonfiction reality unterhalten (, performing arts (, und others including gardening, dance, millennials, and other hobbies. Countless OTT boxen offerings are so curating theme channels and microthemed channels, such as Pluto, Roku, etc.


As before, our fundamental rules have not changed:

Act quickly und work collaboratively (filmmakers + agents/distributors) kommen sie seize time opportunities.Balance traditional und digital zu best catch cumulative und incremental revs in the non-exclusive transaction sector, while so developing a longer term platform pipeline.Be aware many platform buyers seldom attend markets/festivals and instead arbeiten virtually (even pre COVID-19, as i did) zu better allocate your leaner budgets towards programming spend, rather than markets.Don’t stop at nur one deal, uneven exclusivity or funding aspects are an play and worth it.Don’t it is in blocked von se von rights issues. Pragmatic business deals whereby others are “cut in’’ can help make those melt away.Consider mischung distribution: traditional and digital experts sharing die job zum maximum bang for your buck: “100% of Zero is ausblüten Zero”After die deal ist done – aid audiences recognize where kommen sie find her film!

I watch forward kommen sie seeing more von your films und docs right here and in other parts von the world!— Wendy Bernfeld, rights Stuff •