Promoting unbiased movies is a fraught enterprise amid the chaos of the annual movie pageant circuit, however final yr Legion M debuted an ace in its again pocket — lots of of app customers on smartphones, weighing on what titles have been almost definitely to succeed.
That’s how Film Scout was born, the app that lets a mixture of public and trade customers on the bottom at occasions like Sundance charge titles they’ve screened. In flip, its fan-owned dad or mum firm Legion M makes use of the insights to spend money on acquisition titles and associate with filmmakers on future initiatives.
“It’s been fascinating as a result of for the final two years, we glance again at the information we’ve got from hundreds of individuals taking part in and voting on the platform, the predictions are fairly correct to huge viewers style,” stated Legion M Co-CEO Paul Scanlan.
His fellow Co-CEO Jeff Annison added that “our scores throughout Sundance are an excellent indicator of what the Rotten Tomatoes scores of those movies will finally shall be, although these don’t come for a month or a yr later.”
Having launched final yr formally with a yr prior in beta, Film Scout asks its customers two necessary questions.
“The primary is, ‘How excited are you to see this film?’ That’s the half everybody can play. Basing these selections on the identical belongings you’d need scrolling via Netflix — description, solid, photos,” stated Scanlan. “The second is trying at, ‘What do you are expecting all people else goes to wish to see?”
The latter query presents one thing of a Rorschach check to pageant goers, stated Annison.
“The actually fascinating suggestions reveals what we name the ‘traps’ — motion pictures all people thinks individuals wish to see it, however no one needs to observe. After which additionally hidden gems, that some are occupied with however suppose nobody else needs to consider.”
A “no-brainer” on their app this yr, in accordance with the pair stated, was “CODA,” the Sian Heder-directed Sundance darling which rated excessive on Film Scout and finally offered for an eye-popping $25 million to Apple Studios. The lads have been guarded on the movies they’re nonetheless pursuing from this yr’s choice, however have used their enterprise mannequin to achieve previous years.
Legion M has a group of 130,000 customers with possession from 25,000 “fan house owners,” backing they’ve used to associate in productions together with pageant titles “Save Yourselves!” and Anne Hathaway and Jason Sudeikis’ “Colossal.” They’ve additionally partnered on options like RLJE’s anti-superhero epic “Archenemy” with Joe Manganiello and Nicolas Cage’s “Mandy.”
The leaders hope to broaden aggressively into movie and tv originals and in addition develop alternate income streams. They pointed to the latest shopper product integration for the Manganiello movie, making a run of boutique whiskey primarily based off of a plot level within the movie. Annison stated it took one social media submit from Legion M for the retailer to promote out.
“We’ve seen how efficient this may be, actually giving our shareholders a voice within the initiatives we get entangled with. We harness the knowledge of our group to make higher selections,” stated Scanlan.