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Ray Pride

By Ray Pride

Paul Allen's revamped Vulcan: Sharing the Hard Candy

In the Seattle P-I, Winda Beneditti takes stock of “philanthropist, arts enthusiast and all-around rich guy” Paul Allen‘s revamped Vulcan Productions, starting with production of Hard Candy, which they consider “a wicked little gem.” Of Allen’s Seattle-based independent film company, Beneditti writes, “it’s the first Vulcan [film] finished under the company’s new production model—one focused on making feature films on lean budgets and with [an] egalitarian revenue-sharing plan. Michael Caldwell, director of motion-pcture production, thinks the company’s new approach will allow it to make films that are “genuinely original and financially responsible.”redriding45l.jpg “We want to put great stories onscreen and we want to do it in a way that emphasizes tackling the basics of film—great scripts, great directing, great acting,” says Richard Hutton, Vulcan’s vice president of media development.” Vulcan, born Clear Blue Sky Productions, had produced six films for $5-$15 million each, she reports. Far From Heaven, while critically acclaimed and a recipient of four Oscar noms, was she reports Caldwell saying, “financially it was a break-even type film.” “Hutton says they were inspired by the low-budget/revenue-sharing model created by [InDigEnt]. Through this production company, filmmakers agree to work with downright anemic budgets and under specific technical limitations and, in exchange, they’re given total creative freedom. Meanwhile, the entire crew shares in the revenues generated from the first dollar grossed… Hutton says Vulcan Productions decided to do something similar — that is, make films with budgets under $1 million and then split the revenues generated with the people who helped make the films from the get-go.” [More at the link.]

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