With an opening roster of films including THE HOLY LAND OF TYROL, THE CALLING, FACE TO FACE, and EXPIRATION, Film Festival Flix is poised to change the way independent films are delivered to theatrical audiences. Launched in 2011 at the Toronto International Film Festival by Mouse Trap Films President Benjamin Oberman, Film Festival Flix is attempting to give independent filmmakers the chance to get something from their film festival run that has been missing for a number of years, a distribution deal.
With events that go above and beyond a typical screening series, Film Festival Flix delivers a true red carpet experience for filmmakers in cities all across the country. While these screenings are limited engagements that won’t necessarily net you the press from the big papers that a true four-wall experience would bring, and it certainly won’t help films and filmmakers that are vying for Oscar contention, Film Festival Flix is getting independent films in front of audiences, and getting the word out about films that wouldn’t necessarily have the budgets to do a coast to coast run.
Oberman says, “MouseTrap Films was started to find the film festival gems that regularly fall through the cracks. The FILM FESTIVAL FLIX platform was created as a solution to the traditional challenge of marketing and branding a great film that lacks star power or other elements associated with a traditional campaign. We present great films and the film festival experience, monthly in your community, and make the films available to independent film enthusiasts on multiple platforms.”
With an ambitious out-of-the-gate 25 city tour, Film Festival Flix certainly has their work cut out for them. But with an ever-expanding lineup of feature films, and a short film contest as well, Film Festival Flix has the opportunity to succeed where other curators have failed. Partnering with theater chains like Laemmle and various independent venues around the country, it looks like Film Festival Flix has an exciting, albeit expensive adventure before them. One of the things that sets a company like Mouse Trap Films apart from others that try to screen indie films is that they are a funded company, not just an individual or two whose passion for film may exceed their wallet size. Mouse Trap Films and their Film Festival Flix platform seem to have a solid footing financially to make good on their promises to filmmakers.
It’s uncertain whether or not filmmakers will accept a distribution deal from this relative newcomer, but it ties together everything that filmmakers say they want: A true theatrical run, and DVD/VOD options, as well as someone else taking the burden of the marketing of their film off their shoulders. For theater goers Film Festival Flix can bring an experience to their area that might ignite their interest in engaging indie films, and help them support their larger local film festivals down the road. What Oberman and company are offering is advertising not just for the films they are screening, but for all indie films and filmmakers.