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By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

New Genius baby: Weinsteinco's vid arm embraces Tartan

Indie vid distribution is one bigger family as another mini-distrib aligns itself with the Genius label and Tartan Video USA moves its US home-ent distribution of 60 library titles and future releases to the Weinsteinco-affiliated concern that recently shuttered the distribution activities of Wellspring. tartanlogo283075.gifAs Tartan PRs, they’re “continuing the momentum established by its landmark agreement with The Weinstein Company in December 2005,” as described by Genius Products CEO Trevor Drinkwater and Tartan Video USA President Tony Borg. Tartan’s library, they say, “generated approximately $6 million of net revenue in 2005 and is expected to grow to $9 million in 2006.” The titles include upcoming releases of The Death of Mr. Lazarescu and Lady Vengeance. Dropping names and jargon, Drinkwater is quoted: “The Tartan Video library is a remarkable line-up of films that have been recognized around the world as not only entertaining and inspiring, but thought-provoking as well. The titles represent another example of the ever-increasing quality of content distributed by Genius through the expanded infrastructure we created to handle major titles from The Weinstein Company. With our newly implemented Vendor Managed Inventory system, we anticipate even greater success for Tartan’s library.” [The loser in this deal is Tartan’s former distrib, TLA Releasing; the release’s “Safe Harbor” statement is below.]


Safe Harbor Statement
Except for historical matters contained herein, the matters discussed in this press release are forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements reflect assumptions and involve risks and uncertainties that may affect Genius Products’ business, forecasts, projections and prospects, and cause actual results to differ materially from those in these forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements relating to the Genius Products’ newly implemented Vendor Managed Inventory system, the anticipated timing and financial performance of the Tartan library including CELLO, THE HIDDEN BLADE, OLDBOY, A TALE OF TWO CITIES, MAREBITO, THE DEATH OF MR. LAZARESCU, LADY VENGEANCE, DERAILED, HOODWINKED, MRS. HENDERSON PRESENTS, WOLF CREEK, THE MATADOR, DOOGAL, THE LIBERTINE and any other statements relating to such new release that are not historical statements of fact. Actual results could vary for many reasons, including but not limited to, the unpredictability of audience demand, the effect of technological change and the availability of alternative forms of entertainment. Other such risks and uncertainties include the matters described in Genius Products’ filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Genius Products assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances occurring after the date of this press release.

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“Ten years ago at Telluride, I said on a panel that theatrical distribution was dying. It seemed obvious to me. I was surprised how many in the audience violently objected: ‘People will always want to go to the movies!’ That’s true, but it’s also true that theatrical cinema as we once knew it has died. Theatrical cinema is now Event Cinema, just as theatrical plays and musical performances are Events. No one just goes to a movie. It’s a planned occasion. Four types of Event Cinema remain.
1. Spectacle (IMAX-style blockbusters)
2. Family (cartoon like features)
3. Horror (teen-driven), and
4. Film Club (formerly arthouse but now anything serious).

There are isolated pockets like black cinema, romcom, girl’s-night-out, seniors, teen gross-outs, but it’s primarily those four. Everything else is TV. Now I have to go back to episode five of ‘Looming Tower.'”
~ Paul Schrader

“Because of my relative candor on Twitter regarding why I quit my day job, my DMs have overflowed with similar stories from colleagues around the globe. These peeks behind the curtains of film festivals, venues, distributors and funding bodies weren’t pretty. Certain dismal patterns recurred (and resonated): Boards who don’t engage with or even understand their organization’s artistic mission and are insensitive to the diverse neighborhood in which their organization’s venue is located; incompetent founders and/or presidents who create only obstacles, never solutions; unduly empowered, Trumpian bean counters who chip away at the taste and experiences that make organizations’ cultural offerings special; expensive PR teams that don’t bring to the table a bare-minimum familiarity with the rich subcultural art form they’re half-heartedly peddling as “product”; nonprofit arts organizations for whom art now ranks as a distant-second goal behind profit.”
~ Eric Allen Hatch