Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Couple interesting notes about independent distribution

Joe Falcon was nice enough to point out this case study about another aggregator I'd never heard of called Quiver. The article is here:

Also, Jason got back to me again about Distribber. There's a podcast about one of their better-selling low budget zombie movies here that I haven't listened to yet, but am planning on it.

He says that Hulu is in a bit of a transition period right now--changing their deals up, so they're actually holding off making new deals there I think.

I really would like to find some other filmmakers with super-low budget movies who have tried Distribber, just to see what we might expect. Haven't found any yet though...

And as a note--you may have noticed me removing numbers in the other posts. The powers-that-be really don't want any metrics shared as far as minutes and whatnot. Getting kind of dickish, but don't wanna bite the hand that feeds, you know?

Especially when it's currently the only hand that's feeding...

As for Terrortory--while it's going down quite a bit in the minutes category, it's falling far slower in the countdown. It's still #16 in Horror, still top 150 overall.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

So...What Now?

No, not that. Not yet.

(Though I HAVE finished writing the wrap-around in case I do it)

I'm still talking the first flick. I think we're still on course to do about REDACTED minutes for November. Sure, it's a big down-tick, but it's NOVEMBER. People are getting into the OTHER holiday spirits...

One thing slightly concerning is Amazon's dashboard states it's all "estimates", and they don't appear to be kidding. Bounty in its first month, according to their dashboard, did 1.1 million but on the actual earnings chart they claim it's actual 957,000 minutes...

They also sent me this regarding a DIFFERENT month than that:

This message is to notify you that we made an adjustment to your estimated revenue for the month of September to be more accurate and align with the actual payment you can expect to receive. The royalty revenue displayed on the Dashboard report is an estimated amount. From time to time, you may notice an adjustment has been made to your estimated revenue, like the one in your account for September. 

As you might expect, that adjustment was not in my favor. Not a HUGE difference, but still less.

At a certain point, sure, you start wondering WHO'S auditing these guys to make sure they're honest...


The question now is, do we pursue a distributor? (I've technically sent one screener out to a company I heard still gives advances, but haven't heard back yet)

Or do we use an aggregator to get the movie out elsewhere? I contacted Jason Brubaker on Distribber. He's always been a pretty upfront, reachable guy. I had talked to him before when he was working on Chill, another distribution service.

I asked him about Netflix, and submitting Terrortory to them now. He said that if it was exploited on Amazon Prime it probably won't get picked up by Netflix.

Now, it's not a big deal to me. I mean, let's say Netflix is going to give us $10K for 6 months or a year...and believe me, it could be less than that. Guess what, we just made that on Amazon in ONE month. So if I'm only going to put Terrortory on one of those, I'd just as soon it be Amazon.

He suggested trying Vudu or Hulu. Vudu costs around $1200 to submit through Distribber and Hulu costs $1000. If the outlets don't accept your movie, Distribber gives you all but $120 back(for processing).

I have NO idea what Vudu pays--doesn't seem to be details on the percentage. I don't like that they set their own prices(you can recommend, but it doesn't necessarily matter).

Hulu pays by the view OR by ads in your movie--if it's per view it's eighteen and a half cents per view...which is actually worse than Amazon unless your movie is under 70 minutes long...

Is it worth it to go through the rigamarole for those two outlets? Let's say I submit to one and they accept...am I ever going to make that $1K-$1200 back?

Questions I'm mulling over now...

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Amazon Video Terrortory Finals

So we got to #6. Pretty incredible.

We're currently at #8, still hanging in the top 10.


We had a talk and decided to leave it up for free until we all decide to make it pay-only. At this point it still looks to be on track for a lot of minutes in November, and the odds that we're gonna make that much money on paid-streams...just not sure.

And to take the chance and make it pay-only, and then have to wait for Amazon's analytics to tell us how it's doing(and they've been up to 5 days behind on minutes, and they're currently 3 weeks behind on Earnings)...it could be dangerous.

What happens if we get very few paid streams, and we drop out of the top 100 super fast? Even if we switch it to free again, it's not likely we'll catch it in time to stop the drop.

And at this point it should all be profit, so why not make what we can? I'm thinking about sending it to a couple of distributors to test those waters. I'm sure they will frown at us exploiting the film on Amazon already, and I'd give a shit if they were paying any kind of reasonable advances nowadays, but...they're not.


On my other movies' front, Hunting Humans continue to out-perform Fear of Clowns 2. I really can't explain it. To be honest, FOC2 is the least-watched of ALL of my movies on Amazon when I was pretty sure it would be the most-watched.

Not sure how to explain it, especially when it's still selling on DVD.

Thursday, October 27, 2016


Uh...man. Just when I think we REALLY can't go any higher...

It's going to be bittersweet if we push Tremors down to move up to #6, because I love that movie. (I totally won't mind pushing Zombie's Halloween out, FYI)

On top of that we've almost broken into the top 50 popular movies, which is way harder to do since you're competing against ALL movies, not just horror(as you can see, over 9,200 movies).

On every front Terrortory has exceeded our expectations.

Big thanks to everybody who has checked it out and left a review!

Monday, October 24, 2016

#8 Plus The Review Game

Wow, just when I think it can't go any higher it moves to #8...exciting! We're at #70 on the popular chart, so moving up slightly on there too.

Anyway, thought we could play a game that I played on FB last week where I show you why reviews don't matter. It's a quiz...but a fun one. I've got some new ones in there just in case you were one of the ones playing along on FB.

These are ACTUAL AMAZON REVIEWS for movies. They are all 1-star reviews for movies that are, by all measure, excellent movies. Yet, someone out there has seen fit to not only rate it a one, but to talk shit about some of the amazing things in them.

The answers will be way down below if you want to see how you did.

1) --"If Zero Stars were possible...
I'm normally a sucker for movies like this, but this one was so bad I didn't even finish. And that really means something."

   --"Not what I expected. ..it was lame"
   --"Very weak writing and flat affectless acting and all the actors wear way too much make-up, looks very silly."

These are reviews for _________________________

2) "My wife wanted this for her Amazon video library. The language is horrible, the plot pathetic and the acting lousy. I don't get the appeal."
This is a review for _________________________

3) "Weak plot. Bad resolution" and "The book was better". I'll give you a hint--think Hitchcock, but your first guess is probably wrong.
This is a review for _________________________

4) "I have always liked ACTOR but my goodness he didn't always pick the best of films during his career. This one is no exception. Don't get me wrong, it has an interesting story line but the effects are so cheesy that it ruins the whole film for me. It had the makings of a great movie but then their effects just kill it."

This is a review for _________________________

5) --"Terrible. These movie makers owe me $4 and 90+ minutes of my life back...i can never recover the wasted times pent hoping this would get better. Did mention that i had wished that the "moviemakers" had decided to hire a qualified audio engineer after they looked at a few filmed scenes? Absolutely unwatchable, unlistenable, useless movie."
   --"Stupid don't waste your time."

These are reviews for _________________________

6) "Lots of foul language, Also quite a bit a sexual hints, promotes sleeping together in high school. And lots of blasphemy (God.d , Jesus/Jesus Christ) all this even within first 5-10
of beginning. Was very disappointed, thought this was an older movie with some values boy was i wrong. went in garbage. Definitely won't buy the rest in this series."

This is a review for _________________________

7) "I am amazed that this film gets so many positive reviews. I love horror films, and I want them to be scary, frightening, etc. I'm not a big fan of the horror comedy genre. There are a few good ones. But, this is not one of them. This is simply a bad comedy, and there are no real jokes here -- just kind of "stupid comedy": the characters constantly simply act stupidly, and that is supposed to be funny. There is nothing clever here. There is no believable character, with the exception of ACTOR. He is the one saving grace, and his professional acting ability shines way above the rest. But the plot, the other actors, the "jokes" are really bad. The special effects are mostly consisting of "melting faces", and were done on the cheap. Good special effects for the time and for a low budget -- but, not very good for scaring the audience. At the time this was made (1985) perhaps it deserved good reviews as a send-up of horror films. But, it really does not stand the test of time, in my opinion."
This is a review for _________________________

8) --"I went in to this expecting to like it, I even paid to rent it through amazon instant movies and I can't get past the first 45 minutes. The acting isn't good, the plot is really lame so far and I just can't even get in to it enough to finish it. I had heard from quite a few people that its a 'great movie of the 80s' so I thought I would try it and definitely am disappointed."
   --"This is a kid's movie. I can't understand that anyone over 14 thinks this is a great movie! Even the main characters are kids."
   --"I'm not one of those who criticizes other films because other people liked them, but I HATED this film. I rarely hate a film. I even liked MAD CITY. But this...this is not cinema! This is filming people and adding bad dialogue! Quite obviously a no-star movie and THE worst I have ever seen. I'm sorry if I offend those die-hard lovers of the film, but that's my opinion."
These are reviews for _________________________

9) "I was a huge fan of the original. This was a disipiontment. Though it has better FX the plot isn't very good unlike the firsts very unique and original plot. This is a very good DVD and I hope other better movies get this kind DVD treatment. If you want a mindless Special Effects film this is for you."
This is a review for _________________________

10) "Terrible flick with horrid plot and bad postproduction synthetic 3D. The CREATURES were well done, but the rest of the movie was very poor."
This is a review for _________________________

11) --"This movie is just not good, it wasn't scary, it was, uh, it was dumb. There were probably two frightening moments in the film, but it was almost more of a weird fantasy film than horror? I don't get why I've heard so many people say how scary this is, like i have a very low fear-threshold for horror films and this one just was annoying to be honest."
This is a review for _________________________

12) --"really boring it's like a big crime investigation. I didn't get startled at all."
      --"This movie deserves zero stars, it's awful. Absolutely not suspenseful, it's completely predictable and B O R I N G. This movie is a waste of your time and money. Snorefest zzzzzzz"
This is a review for _________________________ 

And the reason that filmmakers shouldn't taken reviews too seriously...

1) Tremors
2) Jaws
3)  The Birds
4) The Thing
5) Shaun of the Dead
6) Back to the Future
7) Fright Night
8) The Lost Boys
9) T2
10) Jurassic Park
11) Insidious
12) The Ring

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Terrortory at #9 and Reviews

Terrortory's doing pretty amazing on Amazon--it's hanging at #9 in the top 10 Horror--not sure it'll be able to push past the big-budget fare above it, but here's hoping. It's actually up to #73 on the Popular list of over 9,000 movies.

Also of note, we've busted through not one million minutes but TWO million at this point. It's very encouraging.

The only downside to all of this is that many of the reviews are, let's say, less than kind. On the one hand it's impossible to ignore, though I try. Many of the reviews I ignore offhand. The ones that mention that it looks like we shot on an iphone or a "90's camcorder" are clearly from out-right idiots.

On the off chance they'd like to know, we shot on: Canon 5D Mark 2 with various L Glass(Smiling Jack) and 5D Mark 3 with rented Zeiss lenses(Wraparound), Panasonic GH4 with rented glass and my cheap Rokinon lenses that I love, Canon 70D(Prowler and Drone) and Canon HV30 and HV40(yes, actually using mini-dv tape).

So if they think the picture looks like an iphone or a 90's camcorder then they're just flat out stupid. (or--as I'm coming to think--they watched it on a phone or kindle with a really bad connection...the movie DOES look like crap if you're watching it that way, but pretty much any movie will)

Those who say the movie "makes no sense"...that's so vague I can't really comment. While there may be a few things that aren't spelled out(like who or what exactly Gotz is), most of it's pretty simple.

1) Siren is about a hunter who goes into the Terrortory and is drawn to the Siren's call. As soon as she speaks to him, everything he sees is only in his mind as she draws him closer and closer to her so that she can eat him.

2) Prowler isn't mine, and to be honest Mark and I had a conversation early where I had script reservations. My problem was that it was going to appear, from the way it was shot, that we were hiding the Prowler's identity. That would appear to the audience like it was one of the people in the group doing the killing. So by the end when it turns out to be a stranger the audience will feel ripped off.
But Mark liked it that way, and that's the filmmaker's prerogitive--to do it the way you want to see it. It would have some cool gore and more humor than the other segments.

3) Smiling Jack - The 1st segment I did. It involves a clueless couple that goes out into the woods camping, with the guy planning to propose to his girl. They're being stalked by a pumpkin-headed man, Smiling Jack.

But surprise #1 is that they're not clueless at all. They're there hunting HIM. To either get some great video or actually citizen's arrest this guy who scares kids out in the woods.

They get attacked, but they go after him and eventually discover surprise #2--Smiling Jack is not a man at all. He's a supernatural entity that opens up the skulls of his victims and adds the brains to his empty pumpkin head.

One reviewer mentioned they thought it might have been better if Jack had an actual pumpkin on his head. I guess he didn't understand that THAT would clearly have revealed that Jack wasn't a man at all. (the review also blows the fact that Jack's a creature rather than just a guy with a plastic pumpkin mask)

4) Drone Collector - This was Dan's and is pretty self explanatory. Our only worry, which I think is valid, is that people watching will think that little walking drone at the end is controlling all of the flying drones. That was not our intention--we just wanted to explain the typing sounds heard earlier(which we had to add to sell the fact that the drone collector wasn't dead).

5) The Midnight Clown - Again, pretty self explanatory. Other than an FX snafu involving a decapitation and another FX shot that we just couldn't make happen due to wind and logistics, it went okay. It was the cheapest of the segments to do because it had to be--I was basically completely out of money by this time.

The Wrap - Couple rents a house in the Terrortory. Lot of life-size dolls around the house. Power goes out, and someone outside the house makes his way INSIDE the house. Goes into their son's room, then attacks her husband while she's passed out downstairs. She wakes to find a black trash bag bulging in the corner--goes upstairs and finds the doll where her son should be. Goes downstairs to see what's in the trash bag, but her husband is outside the door, bleeding. He's stabbed, falls to the ground, and the figure outside gets in. She strikes the figure, knocking its mask off and we see it's a deformed thing with one eye who can only say "Gotz". She kills it, but still doesn't know where her son is. At that moment, something taps on the glass window--it's her husband, who's now in the midst of turning into a life-sized doll(which is what the creature Gotz does to people when it stabs them).

Then she wakes--this is sort of a "Final Destination" moment. Whether I ever address why she in particular has this vision, in a sequel or whatever, who knows?

All that said, I'm pretty happy with the final movie. We shot it for WAY cheaper than any film I've ever done. The reviews who swipe at it for being "low budget", well hey, guilty on all counts. Anyone who doesn't like low budget fare isn't going to like the movie. Lucky for them, the Ghostbusters remake is still available for them to check out.

Next post we'll play a little game that we had fun with on Facebook about reviews.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Breaking the top 10 and the top 100 at the same time...

I'm pretty happy to announce we just moved into the top 10 in horror on Amazon Prime. It's been slow going, but we're there. I'd be lying if I didn't say the movies above us are pretty intimidating. Can we move through them? Through Cloverfield? Through Halloween...in October?

Fingers crossed.

But check this out:
We're at #93 on the Popular list, out of over 9,000 movies. This is a feat none of my other movies have managed, and there's more competition now than there used to be. I think the highest Garden of Hedon ever got was 129, and that was when it was #8 on the horror list.

The scary thing is that the Amazon metrics are STILL stuck on last Tuesday. I'm pretty sure that as soon as we see Wednesday it will show that we broke a million minutes in 12 days, which will be amazing. That's 6 days faster than Garden of Hedon, and it puts us on a track toward 3 million.

I sent support an email to see what's up. The warning about metrics being delayed is there, but it's starting to get worrisome. Like, they ARE keeping accurate records, right?

It's just my luck that the month we have a legitimate chance at the bonus, the whole system goes down...

Saturday, October 15, 2016

#12 on the list / Stats Frozen

Yesterday we were #13, today we're #12.

I feel like if the stats were working we'd be higher. But they've been frozen since Tuesday, and it's not Saturday night.

And even if we're moving slightly on the horror list, it's clear that's not up to date either. It says we've gotten 35 reviews, but yesterday we had 72 and today we have 90. Yet the review meter doesn't budge...

Once I see the stats for Wednesday I think I'll have some cool news...

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Terrortory #19 on the Chart...

We're climbing the chart. Broken the top 20 in 12 days. That's pretty exciting, but we still need bigger numbers. We're #67 in the Mystery section and #292 in Popular movies(out of over 9,000 movies).

This past weekend was our biggest numbers yet--we did over 100,000 minutes each day. In money terms that's like $250.00 a day. In people terms that's over 1100 people per day watching the movie. Kinda crazy to think about it that way.

Sundays are, overall, the biggest day for online viewing period--all my movies show that.

The big problem now is that we've got super-stiff competition now on Amazon. I mean, look at those titles we're competing with. The Others? The Woman In Black? The Mist?

And Terrortory cost less than one day of craft service on any of those movies...

So if you're thinking about putting your movie on Amazon, think about how to distinguish your flick from all of these bigger budget movies standing in the way of your flick and a viewer.

I'll tell you--way #1 is your poster. Make sure your title is big and readable, and your picture eye-catching. I've seen some super shitty posters that look like they were made by a photoshop beginner, and I know it's tempting to try to do it yourself.

But don't. If you're not a graphic designer then find one who will do it for you. In case you never saw my little article I did about one-sheets, check here:

Monday, October 10, 2016

Terrortory Makes An Impact

First off, check that out. Today Terrortory showed up on IMDB's movie meter at 4,705. That's insanely high for an indie film. Hell, I think that's higher than any other of my movies have gone other than Fear of Clowns(which peaked at 192 back when it was released).

So that's cool. People are watching the flick, or hearing about it, and heading to imdb. A good sign.

As for Amazon, the first time it showed up on the list it was 115. It moved up quickly from there, and as of Sunday was at #31 out of almost 1100.
That's a pretty fast move. Much faster than any other film I've put on Amazon.

The big question is going to be can it go higher than Garden of Hedon went(#8) and stay there for a while? The competition is fiercer than it was when GOH debuted, for starters, and we need some real staying power to have a shot at 2 million minutes in one month.

That's sort of the arbitrary number I think we need to hit to have a shot at the Amazon bonus. I could be wrong. Could be 3 million. I just don't know, and Amazon doesn't give you any hint.

They did release this notice about August's stars, which released 50 of the 100 movies that got the bonus.

Honestly, as tired as I am of the whole grind of making no-budget movies, I'd be lying if I didn't say that now that the weather's turning cool I'm feeling the pull to shoot something.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Rough Couple Weeks Part 2

It's the epic conclusion to the two-part series!

Minus the epic part of it. But first--pictures!

 The rare-to-see Australian Brett. This animal is rarely sighted during the day, and for good reasons--it's very tempermental.
 My buddy Dom, who I've known for years and years.
 Fellow filmmakers Jason Delgado and Jeremy Todd Morehead, whose Easter Sunday comes out soon! Check it out when it does--I'm looking forward to it.
 It's Fredpool. Get it? Freddy Krueger and Deadpool? I thought it was kind of clever, but what do I know?
My brother from another mother. No, seriously, we both came out of different vaginas on literally the same day, same year. (Well, the different vaginas is still hearsay, for all I know)


I headed up to the convention after noon. Wasn't taking that much stuff, so didn't have to get there too early. The load in, as always, was a pain in the ass. The loading ramp is this 45 degree down ramp, and in this case it was still wet from the rain...

I won't bore you the way the attendance bored me on Friday night. It was slow. Handed out flyers and talked to people, but not that many to talk to.

And we(the dealers and whatnot), as always, were confused by why they close off the room between the celebrities and dealers. The room looks so big and spacious without the wall, but once they close that wall you have two very small rooms that aren't particularly inviting.

Couple dealers I know went to complain, but to be honest the convention runner isn't too interested in hearing from us. Don't get me wrong--he's a fairly nice guy in general who really knows how to run the NJ Monstermania, but he's never really been able to get a grip on the MD one, and doesn't seem interested in figuring out how to fix it.

Whatever. I still go because it's so close and it's a chance to hang out with friends I don't see that often.

Friday night I came home instead of hanging out--had to make sure the Amazon launch worked out, and sure enough at midnight the link suddenly appeared to add to the watchlist. It was on!

That took quite a load off of me. If it didn't show up, I was gonna be in some trouble explaining, you know?

We went up early--me and my buddy Zig--got there around 9am. The place got pretty crowded, we handed out tons of flyers. Met a lot of people, wandered around and saw the sights.

The days really go by fast. Never enough time to talk to everybody.

My lead actor from "Garden of Hedon", Richard Cutting, actually came down from Connecticut and hung out for a while. I showed him his segment from Terrortory, plus a segment he was on set for. Told some stories.

Then we went downstairs to the bar. Vodka drinks in hand. Hung out the rest of the night there, talking to people like filmmaker Brad Twigg and some actor friends of his, as well as actress Judy Furlow from Fear of Clowns and her husband.

I sort of wish I'd gone to a couple of the panels, but when the choice is chat & drink or sit and listen to people talk...it's easy.

My buddy Dom and Brett--who are usually the last guys standing with me at 3am when all the wussies have gone to sleep--went to bed EARLY. Couldn't believe it! Now I know we're all getting old...

It was back to dead again on Sunday. Gave away fewer fliers, but took actual pictures of people, which I always forget to do. And Dom introduced me to the Greatest American Hero, so all is forgiven.

We packed up early and got out of there. Ate a 5 Guys dinner, and that was it.

I was honestly too tired to celebrate the relief of having it all over. The news of the premiere was spreading to a lot of web sites, and I wanted to start taking a look at the numbers...

But Amazon's metrics were collapsing--frozen--so I didn't get to see much at first. When Terrortory debuted on the chart it was 113. The next day it's here--we broke into the top 100 much faster than any other movie I've put up.

Fingers crossed we can break into the top 50, then the top 20, and even--dare I hope? The top 10...

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Terrortory Music

I promise I'll get back to the rough week story, but I have to take a moment to talk about the music of Terrortory.

I've been kind of quiet about it because I wanted it to be a little bit of surprise of the style in the movie. I was originally going to go for what I normally love--orchestral. For me it's always been the mark of a serious movie, and I've loved it as far back as I can remember.

But things came up, and the film took longer to finish than I thought, and my usual composer Chad Seiter was working on the ReCore game for Microsoft that had him flying to London to conduct sessions with the Philharmonic Orchestra...

We scrambled for a replacement. A buddy of mine said he knew of a guy in the UK named Terence Jones, so I contacted him. He did a test scene for us and he was very good.

Here's where you can hear the score for Terrortory and buy the soundtrack:

The only thing was, he didn't think he'd have time to score the whole thing in the time we had. That led me to go with the backup plan I'd had in my head for a while...

I've been a synth fan forever...I mean, I'm an actual child of the 80's. I grew up on that stuff. So I'd been a member of a synth FB group for a while and I put out a call to a few of those guys and said "Hey, anybody interested in doing music for segments of my movie?"

I figured if each segment was done in the old-school synth style--which has been making a comeback since Drive/The Guest/It Follows, and more recently Stranger Things--then it could be cool.

First guy to come back was a dude named Daniel Deluxe. He didn't have a lot of time, because he was getting ready to go on tour. He's pretty well known. You can hear some of his stuff, including his very cool Corruptor album here:

I gave him Smiling Jack, which is probably my favorite segment of the bunch, and he went to work. Hit it out of the park, man. It was great. A few tweaks, and we were good to go.

Got a couple of other people who tried segments but either weren't experienced enough yet to do it up to what I was looking for, or like in one case, quit after a day because they didn't realize just how much work it was.

Another guy got back to me. His name was Ben Moseley, and his musician moniker was "Bishop of Battle". I mean...it was kismet, right? (for those who don't know, that's the name of the villain in one of the segments of the 80's horror anthology Nightmares, which I watched the crap out of as a kid)

I gave him Siren. We went back and forth to get it where I was happy, but man was he talented. The Siren piece is haunting, and reminiscent of things like the Vangelis Blade Runner score.

You can hear some of his other stuff(including a cool Oingo Boingo cover) here:


But it didn't end there...

I had nobody for Prowler, so I asked Ben if he'd be up for doing that one also. He watched it and said "Sure". He wanted to do it a little differently since it has a lot of humor in it. He referenced the funny "Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill"segment from Creepshow as the sort of thing he'd be trying to do.

The person doing Drone quit--too much work. So I'm scrambling, and I ask Ben..."I know you're not done with Prowler, and we're like 3 weeks out from the premiere...any chance you'll be able to do Drone also?"

And like a boss, he said "Send it to me and let me see." I did, he took it on, and he hit all of them out of the park. Saved my ass, I can tell you that.

Somewhere in there I also got all of Terence's orchestral score to the wrap-around, and it was excellent. I barely asked for any changes. It builds slowly and by the end really brings on the horror.

The final piece was the end credit music. I wanted it to be a fun, 80's pop style music. My temp music I laid in was "Ain't Nothing Gonna Break My Stride". That sort of thing.

I spent days listening to songs on soundcloud from synth groups. I made a list of my top 8 and sent it to Zig. We decided which four were the best, and I emailed each of the groups to see if they were interested.

Well, happily for me, one named Foret De Vin got back and said they'd consider it. They read the contract and said, "Let's do it." Here's the song over the end credits--so 80's it's awesome! They're from Sweden, and Europe seems to be having a major 80's revival...makes me want to move there.

Get on their Facebook here:

If you like these guy's music, buy some of it--help support these talented guys, because they're amazing and willing to help out us indie filmmakers.
(and if you're not familiar with soundcloud and bandcamp, there are usually links to the musicians FB/Twitter/etc on the right side of their soundcloud page, so give them a Like!)

Monday, October 3, 2016

Blumhouse Features An Exclusive Clip of Terrortory...and why that's so cool for me

First off, the link to the article is here, so go check it out!


Story time! I'll try not to get too purple with my prose.

Years ago I finished Fear of Clowns 1. I had no inkling to do a second, especially with how disappointed I was with the finished movie. With the exception of the last half hour, it really wasn't the movie I'd set out to make.

But I made a cool teaser, and had a talented graphic designer I'd met online named Erik Ashley do a cool poster. I was looking for a distributor, but hadn't sent out any copies yet.

I woke up one day to find I had a message on my phone from someone who said they were with Lionsgate, and wanted to speak to me about acquiring FOC. I thought--One of my friends is a real asshole, messing with me like that.

But the number was in California, so I called it. I was shocked to find out it was actually Lionsgate. The person I spoke to tells me, "We've seen the poster and the trailer, and we love them. We can't believe nobody's used that title for a movie yet, either."

They tell me--send us a screener, but it probably won't matter--we want the movie. The only rub was, they didn't want to buy it directly from me. They wanted a producer's rep.

(that may sound weird to you, but the bottom line is that many young filmmakers don't understand deliverables and dealing with contracts, so the movie company doesn't want to have to hold your hand through it--if you get a producer's rep, THEY will hold your hand and save the movie company time)

Lionsgate told me, get any rep you want. But here's a list of some of the ones we deal with a lot.

I did my research, talked to some other filmmakers who had used some of the reps, and found one that seemed good. We talked, and they were very cool. But they wanted to stress--there was no deal on the table yet. They would talk first with Lionsgate, but there was no guarantee it would land there.

I told them--and put it in writing in THEIR contract--there are only two companies I am signing this movie to:  Lionsgate or Anchor Bay. At this time, those were the places for horror. They were the ones putting out all the best horror. (you gotta remember, this was like 2002 or so)

Anyway, Lionsgate came through right away and the rest is history.

The reason I tell you this story is because Blumhouse is now IT. They are, far and away, creating the best horror movies. Insidious, The Purge flicks, Sinister. Under-appreciate flicks like Creep, Oculus, The Visit and more. These guys appreciate horror, and they take risks. They bankroll a lot of small horror movies to see what works and doesn't work.

Then last year they started the Blumhouse web site, which is the biggest time-suck in history, and I mean that in the nicest way possible. There's a TON of great articles, day after day, that will ensure you don't get all your actual work done.

They've hired some great writers and talent, from my buddy Rob Galluzzo to another guy I've known online for years, Ryan Turek, to others I haven't met but have read many times like Rebekah McKendry, William Bibbiani, John Squires and more.

So to be featured on their web site is a huge honor for me. I think Blumhouse is the present and future of horror, and the good news is that they're not just in it for the money--they all have a sincere love of horror, and that's why they're succeeding.

There you have it! Maybe next time I'll tell you how I met Rob G--it involves a hotel room, an early screener of Feast, and Adam Green. (not joking)

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Whew! Rough Couple Weeks! PART 1

Just got back from the Monstermania Weekend promoting Terrortory's release. That's me and the Greatest American Hero, William Katt.

But let's REWIND...

It's September 23rd. I've submitted to be published the actual Terrortory movie...I've set it so that it won't be live until October 1st, but I want it to be published so it will show up in Amazon's database for people to add to their watchlist.

Amazon REJECTS the title late on the 24th. They say "Misleading Synopsis". They don't give any other help, which is just another exhibit for how mediocre-to-bad their Video Direct Support is.

So I send them this email:

I just got an error on Terrortory that reads as this: 
"Synopsis - Misleading Content:
We are unable to publish your title as the synopsis provided contains content which
is misleading and/or an inaccurate representation of the video content. Please
update the synopsis and resubmit your title. For more information, see our Content
Policy Guidelines. "

Nothing in my synopsis is misleading. This is the synopsis:
EXCLUSIVELY PREMIERING on AMAZON PRIME until October 31st! In the vein of Creepshow
and Tales From The Crypt comes this anthology horror featuring six tales set in the
nightmare land called the TERRORTORY! 

The movie is exclusively premiering on Amazon Prime until October 31st, at which
point we will make it a pay-only title. The movie is in the vein of Creepshow and
Tales From The Crypt, and it has 6 stories in it.

So what's the misleading part of this?

But I don't have time to wait for their reply. I have to get this approved. So I modify the synopsis slightly and resubmit. Another day and another rejection. I'm starting to sweat, because if this isn't approved by the 28th, it may not show up in time to be live on October 1st...

The new rejection clarifies that my synopsis implies that Amazon endorses my movie. I disagree--it simply states the fact that it's exclusively available on Amazon. It's true. We're not playing it anywhere else. The fact that Amazon's being anal about it is just stupid.

Whatever. I delete that sentence and resubmit.

It gets approved after a couple of days, but it doesn't go live until midnight strikes the first minute of October 1st.

But before that we have the premiere. REWIND AGAIN

The weather was terrible. Pouring rain, which led to massive traffic. I knew this would mean no cool pictures of the crowds of people under the marquee--they'd all be huddled inside to avoide the crappy weather.

 I needed to get to the theater early so I could test the blu ray and make sure it was cool. We had the limo show up, and headed out.

I started getting a lot of texts and emails from people who were gonna come, but said the weather was too shitty or the traffic was bad, etc. I don't blame them--it was disappointing, but I can't say I wouldn't have done the same thing in their place.

I get to the theater and nobody's arrived yet. I rush in and get the blu ray to the projectionist guy. He puts it in and the disc is fast forwarding with some weird shit. I just assume he's doing that. But he opens the window and he's like "Is that how it's supposed to look?"

I'm like, "No." He messes with it and gets it working. Sounds good too--the Dolby mix plays nicely.

Fast foward--we get a decent crowd. Not as many as would have come if the weather had been nice, but definitely a healthy bunch--I'm guessing around 250. They laugh in most of the places I'd hoped. There was a couple of places where I thought there'd be a laugh but there wasn't one.

Most people seemed pretty happy with the movie. We got differing opinions on which ones were best, but the leaders seemed to be Siren and DC, with Smiling Jack coming next.

Funny aside--my kid was only supposed to watch the part he's in, but he bullied his mother into letting him watch all of it, much to my parents disapproval. They were all up in the private balcony overlooking the theater.

Afterparty was fun, had some drinks, shot the shit with people I don't see that often.

But in the back of my mind I was heading to the next challenge--the very next morning I was heading to Monstermania to spread the news of Terrortory on Amazon...


Monday, September 19, 2016

Terrortory Amazon Prime Premiere Approaching, Plus Updates

Almost ready to submit the whole thing to Amazon, so it gets listed. You can set the day it premieres on Amazon, though it's not guaranteed. I guess there's an off-chance your movie will show up early, and they don't want to be held liable if that happens.

So I'm a LITTLE afraid that what if I submit it and Amazon accidentally puts it up before the local premiere? That would be awkward.

Yet, to guarantee it shows up by October 1st, I have to submit it earlier than the Premiere.


On the stats front, some weird stuff going on. Can't really explain it.

GOH and Bounty are going WAY down now, even though they're still both top 100 titles. GOH is down to like 1000 minutes a day, while Bounty is around 4000-6000. I guess it's to be expected since they both went over a million minutes--the viewership has to be finite, I suppose.

But I put both Hunting Humans and Fear of Clowns 2 up, and neither is doing big business like the other titles. Hunting Humans has only done about 33,000 minutes in four weeks, which is pretty small.

Maybe it's just not that recognizable a movie.

However, Fear of Clowns 2, I put up at the beginning of September. Did the same advertising as the others. It's the sequel to a Lionsgate film, and it has a huge interest base(scary clowns!)...but it's really been slow going.

It's changing a bit now, making me wish I'd submitted at the end of August. This week it broke the top 200 horror flicks on Amazon, and this past weekend started doing over 7000 minutes per day.

Not gonna be a million-minute-in-one-month title, unless it does it in October.

As far as the Amazon Star program, we still heard nothing on GOH. I'll admit I'm pretty disappointed. We did amazing numbers, and somehow missed it? Or are we penalized because of that "Terms of Service" violation that they wouldn't give us specifics on?

Waiting to hear on Bounty...because if we get it on Bounty, then it's definitely us being penalized, since it had slightly less views in the month than GOH did the previous month.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Kinonation Update Plus Why Amazon Prime Makes Me Happy

So I think I'm about to let the whole kinonation thing go away.

See, now that's it's on Amazon Prime, what do I care? If they could get us on Hulu or Netflix then okay, it would be good. But so far, after nearly 9 months they've gotten us here:

Vimeo On Demand. Could have gotten us there myself, so no big deal.
M-GO. Not even sure what this is. So I looked it up. It's Fandango Now, some sort of streaming thing from them. Only problem is, I search for Bounty and there are no results for my flick. Here, see for yourself.
MagicInternet2. Ditto. No idea. It's not in the list of outlets I checked, and I can't find anything via a search engine.

And for me the bigger problem is this: There doesn't seem to be any accounting or stats page to show me if I'm getting any sales. I guess--since I haven't heard--that we haven't had any.

Leads me to just think I should pull the plug on the whole thing. I've sent them an inquiry about stats, so we'll see what they say.


I'll tell you why Amazon Prime makes me happy.

I see these other filmmakers, and you know what they're doing when their movie is done? They're making press kits. They're sending out screeners(plus checks for submission fees) to film festivals, and maybe sending out screeners(more cost!) to distributors in the hope that a distributor will say, "Sure, we'll distribute you."

And it's SO MUCH work and SO MUCH money to do all that shit. I know, I did it for my first two films.

But I can get my film out to hundreds of thousands of people right away AND get paid for it...within 3 months of them first airing...

It's almost too good to be true.

Anyway, THIS is why I'm premiering Terrortory on Amazon. Hell, the movie's not even completely done yet, and we're 31 days away from premiering it to the world. (well, 29 days if you count the actual local premiere)


Monday, August 29, 2016

The News Is Spreading

So here's our official poster for Terrortory. We let Dread Central premiere it--they've always helped us out on spreading the news, just like HorrorTalk, so it's nice to give them exclusives when you can.

They put out this yesterday:

I spent the weekend making a quick ticket selling site--did it in Notepad, so it's super basic, and for some reason doesn't load well on phones. Shocking.

But you can buy through Paypal, or use any credit card through SquareUp.

On the Amazon front, don't freak out if you see the IMG REMOVED on all my other posts. It appears they don't want a lot of this information out there--there's even a ND in the contract, so I took all of them down. I'll still pass on as much info as I can, but no more screen shots.

We passed 2.5 million minutes yesterday.

Oddly, Hunting Humans is doing twice as much streaming in the UK as the U.S., which no other movie of mine did. It's a little weird. I mean, the UK makes up maybe 10% of my other streaming totals...

Only thing I can think is that we DID get a UK dvd release. It looked like this:

Maybe it's got a big following over there. I should look into doing a signing or something, maybe I've got a cult following in the land of Jack the Ripper.

Maybe not.

Anyway, lot to do before the premiere.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Bounty Joins The Million Club

Super excited that we now have two individual movies with a million minutes each. Will Hunting Humans follow suit? Only time will tell!

I'm pretty certain Terrortory will do it--a brand new, never before seen movie should get a lot of views.

So hey, keep this page bookmarked so you can check out everything. As Horrortalk remarked, Fear of Clowns 2 will be on there by September 1st!


Wednesday, August 17, 2016


So the news is out today--we're going to premiere Terrortory on Amazon Prime for free from October 1st-October 31st.

I mentioned doing something like this the second Amazon Prime became a viable option for distribution. After looking into it I decided, hey, let's be all in.

See, the thing is, we're at a point where a distributor will give you maybe a $5K or a $10K(if you're VERY lucky) advance plus some back-end that'll end up probably being nothing. They'll expense you to death so the advance is all you'll ever see.

And the thing is, you're liable to make that on Amazon within a year if your movie is popular at all. I mean, GOH has made about $3K in a month in a half. And that's a movie that's been out for over five years.

World premiering a movie? Especially if I can get the word out there, and I will be doing a lot of work on that end to do so. Step one is, have a new trailer that people will share to get the word out. Here's that:

After it's available for free for a month we can either continue to offer it for free, or move it to the pay-to-stream option. Because once it's popular, it will show up in more lists and therefore have more eyes taking a look at it.

I have noticed that even though most of my movies are free on Amazon Prime right now, we've actually gotten a few more sales than normal. I had heard of this phenomenon, but never witnessed it before.

And none of this stops us from actually getting a distributor. There's always a clause in the contracts that says you haven't "exploited" your title at all, and as long as I explain to them what we've done and get that clause taken out, it's not a problem.

Will it make them more hesitant because we've put it out for a month, or more eager when they see the kind of numbers we pulled during that time? Either way, I'm fine with it.

It really is a pretty exciting time for filmmakers. Wish Netflix would do something like this, and we could say goodbye to distributors entirely...

We plan on having a local premiere, which I'm trying to put together now. It's a pain in the ass, but one of the big joys in making a movie is seeing it up on the big screen, and hanging out with cast/crew again.

More news coming, so keep an eye out! We're talking about whether to do a physical release(dvd and/or blu ray)...I do love my media, but that would mean I'd have to do interviews and whatnot to make a Making Of, and that's a LOT of work...

We'll see.

Saturday, August 13, 2016


Big news! We just hit TWO MILLION minutes streamed. It's counting Bounty and GOH in that, and it took us about 43 days to do it.

It's not all rosey--the numbers are definitely starting to stabilize. GOH has fallen quite a bit since they stuck us in mature(averaging now about 8K minutes a day).

Bounty's still getting between 25K and 40K a day, but I just started getting Tom to start promoting it.

And "Hunting Humans" is now available. We'll see how that does.

Right now, check this out:
Both GOH and Bounty are in the top 30 in horror, right next to each other. They're also right next to each other in mystery, in the top 100.

Got some BIG news coming up shortly, so check back on Monday or Tuesday...

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Update Plus Handy Link To Shot List Template

Bounty's up to #13 in the Doc category. It's hovering around #29 in Horror and it's up to #91 in the top 100 Mystery/Thriller.

The dashboard stats have been really behind lately. There's even a warning saying they're behind and to check back later. But I think I'll have some big news shortly.

Anyway, if you're a filmmaker this is a pretty cool FREE template for making shot lists. I'll probably use it on my next flick, if there's a next flick. :)


Saturday, August 6, 2016

The Rankings

I've been keeping all of this data in order to figure out how things work. To see what's working and what's not. Here's some of the stat rankings:

GARDEN OF HEDON(Highest ranks)
7-28-2016 #8 in Horror, #42 in Mystery and #129 in Popular(out of 9,300 movies)

That was our high day, and also--not coincidentally--when they put us under the Mature category.

It's hard to fight--not like we're paying THEM to show our movies, and their terms of service do say they reserve the right to make those sorts of judgement calls. Some other horror filmmakers I've talked to have also had their stuff pushed there, so it's not like they're singling me out.

BOUNTY(Highest ranks)
8-6-2016 #30 in Horror, #97 in Mystery, #17 in Documentary, #328 in Popular

This one's still rising, so fingers crossed in pushes into the top 20 in horror. Would also be amazing to break into the top 100 in Popular, something GOH never got the chance to do.

Friday, August 5, 2016

The Amazon Doings

Been busy trying to find a composer for Terrortory, now that my composer had to drop out due to his other obligations. Have talked to seven other people, all of whom are too busy to work this into their schedule.

It's getting to the point I'm just going to hum the score.

Anyway, getting put on the Adult and Mature list has KILLED our numbers. We went from over 120,000 minutes a day to under 15K in the span of two days.

Went back and forth with Amazon, and they won't back off or give me details. At first they said there was adult content in our video. I then informed them that's bullshit, that there's no sex and under 20 seconds of nudity.

Then they waffled and sorta implied it's our key art. They won't say what it is, only that they reserve the right to put mature videos in that category.

On the other side, Bounty continues to rise. And look, we're now #21 in Documentary.

Makes me smile. I hope that's how everybody's watching it, like it's real.

Anyway, Bounty's #32 in horror and #104 in mystery.

GOH is still #11 in horror(#8 was our highest ranking) and #57 in mystery, which is odd but I guess the lists update slower than the data.

Here's hoping Bounty will make it to the top 10 like GOH...

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Update - We're #8! We're #8!

Not as catchy as We're #1, but there's no way that's gonna happen. If we break top 5 I will be ecstatic.

We're getting hit with some bad reviews now, but it's totally expected. I don't even take them personally--you gotta understand the mindset of the viewer. Look at those other movies up there...they all cost over a million dollars, many of them over 20 million...and then they decide to check out our little under $50K opus...

So it's no big deal to me.

Maybe you're wondering...what about your other movie, Bounty? Well, it's moving up too. It's broken into the top 100 horror movies(#87). I also did a cool little trick to entice the viewers.

You can add a background image that the peruser can see bits of behind the other icons. And then when they click off, it still shows for a split second. Like, this is how it looks normally:

You can only barely see the stuff in the background. But here's what it looks like in motion:


I'm not violating any terms because I made sure I painted out the nips and the crotch, and then darkened the crotch so you can't tell I've made her into a mannequin.

Anyway, will be curious to see these reviews since I think Bounty's been more warmly received by the younger generation than the older ones. (I had an older in-law tell my father in-law after watching Bounty that next time he'd just write a check for a couple of tickets so he didn't have to come to my next movie--that's how bad he didn't like it. )

Makes me laugh.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

One Million Minute Club

We hit it at the 19 day mark.

We also got banned in Japan. I'm a little worried it's going to impact our stats, not because of Japan, but because all of a sudden we've disappeared from Amazon's online lists. Like, if you search my name or "Garden of Hedon" you'll see the Blu Ray.

It will say there's two movies under Amazon Prime, but if you click there you'll only see Bounty.

I sent them an email asking what's the deal. Hopefully they'll straighten it out because now that we're top 10, I'm dreaming we can be top 5...

We're at 133 on the Popular list. If we break top 100 there that's pretty big.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

#9 With A Bullet

We were at #14 for a day or two, and then I saw this:
We're up to #48 in mystery, #149 in popular movies and we're on page one of Amazon Prime Horror movies.

It's all a little overwhelming at the moment.

Am comparing it to Bounty now that we've let that out of the bag to see how they stack up. Bounty is beginning to rise--it's at #167 in Horror right now, and the numbers are rising.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Stuck at #19

Again, worse problems to have. We've made it up to 72 in mystery. #242 in popular.

The dashboard updates slowly, always a couple of days behind. But I am happy to tell you that we've passed the half a million minute mark. I'd like to join Chance's Million Minute Club, so fingers crossed...

Bounty's gone live and is moving up slowly. It's actually up to #265 in horror. I haven't checked the popular list--probably isn't on it yet.

Hopefully the spreading of the news will help it out.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Stuck at #21--there are worse problems to have...

Still at #21 on the Horror list, so I checked the mystery list which is actually even bigger than horror. Didn't expect much, but look at that! We're #86 out of over 1300 movies.

But, uh, look at the numbers today.

Almost 450,000. And what I thought DOES appear to be true; the more popular your movie, the more popular your movie gets. How long that stays, who knows? Enjoying it for now.


Big surprise here for you. I actually put ANOTHER of my movies on Amazon Prime at the same time as GOH and ran a sort of blind test to see the difference between a movie I pushed versus one I didn't.

So feel free to click here and add "Bounty" to your watch list.

Surprisingly Bounty hasn't gotten zero views. I'm not sure how people have found it, but it's at nearly 20,000 minutes viewed. Far off from GOH, but still not as low as I would have expected.

Now, it doesn't have the boobs on the poster like GOH, so I don't expect those numbers. But I think it's a pretty entertaining movie(he said humbly) and seems to be a favorite among a lot of my younger "fans". Younger being under 30. 

Man I'm old.

Anyway, more later!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Garden of Hedon Update - #21 and hopefully climbing...

Look at that--it seems only fitting that I'm now on the same screen with Chance Shirley's Hide and Creep, since he's the one that got me to commit to putting GOH up there.

We're now 305 on the Popular Movies List, out of about 9900 movies.

And more importantly...brace yourself...

Can you see that? Over a quarter MILLION minutes streamed now. In only about 2 weeks time.

I'm pretty stoked about this.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Garden of Hedon: #22 on the Amazon Prime Horror Movie List!

Not gonna lie. Pretty excited. I wasn't sure we were going to break top 100, much less top 25.

We're #374 on the Popular list(now with 9,111 movies total), and on page 3 of Amazon's actual web site under horror movies. It's all data, data, data to feed into my spreadsheet...

It's early, but so far the experiment certainly seems to be a success. Big thanks to Chance Shirley for pointing out that the $.15 per hour could actually add up to something more than $5.

We're currently at 134,000 or so minutes.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Saturday Update

The numbers are starting to really increase. We jumped up to #68 on the list, where we were #98 the previous day. We're also on page 10 of Amazon's horror list on their web site, up from page 20.

So, so far so good.


Here's why it's getting exciting:

118,000 minutes

Friday, July 15, 2016

Stats Problem

You may wonder why I haven't posted anything today. Well, stats have frozen for the past two days on the dashboard.

I emailed Amazon who told me this:
We recently discovered a technical error that is delaying reporting on your Amazon Video Direct dashboard. We’re working on correcting the error, and it will not affect your payments. I apologize for the inconvenience this has caused.

 So, will be interesting when it comes back on. Because we've moved into the top 100(#92 to be exact) on Amazon Prime's movie list.

Top 50, here we come(hopefully).

But I talked to my buddy who said he's totally cool putting his name and movie here. So you can go check it out--he's Chance Shirley and the flick is Hide And Creep. It's easy to find, it's always in the top 20 movies on Amazon Prime horror now!

You can follow him on Twitter at this handle: @crewless

Go give him a view, and he'll probably keep us updated on his flick's progress! 

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Thursday Stats

Yeah, now we're getting somewhere.

When I first checked in the afternoon it said 19,000 or so. But you gotta see that it's not like we did 12K views in one day--a lot of this is through the revising of previous days. To see what I mean, here's the 19K chart and the 9K chart put together.

As you can see, some of those numbers have been added to quite substantially.

Our ranking on the Xbox One Amazon app was at 310 yesterday at first check, now we're at 190. Promising. Just have to keep going up.

We were on Amazon's Horror movies at page 35 yesterday. Today we're at 21. So moving up there too.

I have tried something interesting to get people to check out the movie, and I'm not sure whether it's working or not. It involves this web page I put together in about five minutes:

If it seems like something that helped I'll throw what I did out here at some point. (no, it wasn't just me creating a ghetto page in notepad)

Google let me know that this web site mentioned Garden of Hedon:

That might help our UK numbers. Not exactly sure if something like that exists for the US--I know there are Netflix lists like this, so it would make sense for someone to do it. Just not aware of it yet if it's a thing.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Wednesday Stats Get Interesting


9000 Minutes

As you can see, the stats get put up at a weird rate, and as I said, aren't final for a couple of days.

A few things to note--technically these are yesterday's stats. Wait until you see today's actual stats. Something weird's going on--not sure what it is--but I like it.

And GOH doesn't seem to be moving up any list--it's still 310 AND 311. Yes, for some reason, it's showing up as a double on the list. It's not the only movie, so apparently there's some glitch in the system right now.

Also--remember when I put GOH up, there were 880 horror flicks on there? Now there's 904. That number's only going to increase. So more than ever, remember how important I said your one-sheet was in that web post way back? It's never been MORE important.

In case you never read it, here it is:

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Next Day Stats


6400 minutes

Well, as you can see, the numbers don't just go down--guess they got adjusted, but I like up much better than down.

We are hovering at the same place in the order list on Amazon. Not good. Really need it to move up. I know a couple of web sites have started mentioning that we're out there now, so hopefully word will continue to spread.

And no, we still haven't paid for the captioning it cost to get us up on Amazon yet. Fingers crossed...soon...

Monday, July 11, 2016

The Amazon Prime Experiment Continues


4100 minutes

So here's the first couple of days after the movie went up. It's been interesting to watch its movement on the Amazon list, because it's pretty clear that if you can get your movie into the top 30 or so that you will be doing okay.

The highest we've gotten so far is 309. Granted, it jumped from 860 to that, so it's a nice jump but still nowhere near high enough.

As you can see you're allowed to do UK, Japan and Germany also.

They run a pretty good analytics, just don't count the number as rock solid until a few days have passed. For some reason I've seen the number go slightly down a couple of times, so maybe there are adjustments I'm not aware of.

The neat thing for me is this--I actually had another of my movies go live on Amazon Prime but I told nobody about it yet. I wanted to see the difference between a movie I pimped versus one I didn't.

Interesting enough, the movie nobody knows about still was viewed about 10 times. Not sure how they found it, but still...it's data to be considered.

More updates soon.

My internet friend, btw--his movie is now over a MILLION minutes watched. He's been in the top 20 movies for a week now, so it's clear that THAT'S where you wanna be.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Garden of Hedon On Amazon Prime

After going back and forth with Amazon for a while I got the captions file approved, and hit Publish after correcting all the information associated with the flick. Amazon said it would show up in their system within a couple of weeks.

Two days.

It appeared late last night as published, so I went ahead and looked, and yep, there it is.

Now, I don't anticipate a ton of money from Amazon on this. Like I mentioned, we get paid only fifteen cents per hour streamed, so basically about $.29 every time someone watches the whole movie. I'm not sure how fast-forwarding works, but I'm guessing they don't credit you for that.

But, I have an online-friend who put his movie up and has kept us abreast of his totals. Week one he'd made around $50. Not even enough to pay for the captions required to put it up on Amazon Prime.

Then some crazy shit happened. After a couple of weeks he hit half a MILLION minutes viewed. That's around $1200.

Sure, it's not quit-your-job money, but it's pretty good, especially for under a month. And the thing is, the more your movie gets streamed, the higher up the search results you are, which leads to MORE streaming.

The biggest hurdle is people finding your movie, because--at my current count--there are 884 horror movies on Amazon Prime. When my flick went live it was 861 out of 884.

It doesn't seem to be updating much but I'll check tomorrow since we started spreading the news today.

Thing is, though, this could be a game changer. Let's say you can make $7K-$12K a year streaming it through Amazon. You could conceivably bypass a distributor who's only going to give you--if you're lucky--a $10K advance on a back-end you'll never see.

You could actually host your worldwide premiere on Amazon Prime. When you submit the Publish thing you can set a date a few weeks in the future so it's not published right away. Then you pimp the hell out of the premiere date, make an event of it, and get a lot of people streaming it.

I imagine if it's the first place you could see the movie then you might be able to get some heat there.

My immediate worries are that Amazon will decide this is too expensive a venture for them. They're going to be paying out a lot of money that they weren't paying out before, all in the quest to compete with Netflix. They're going to have to worry about fraud--people involved in the movie streaming it over and over again just to make a few extra bucks.

What would be pretty great is if Netflix decided to try it themselves. Man, would distributors be shitting themselves if we filmmakers could do a complete end-around on them.

On the bad end, Amazon needs to fix their goddamn Xbox app. First off, their search engine won't show more than 1000 titles in the search. So when you start scrolling across the roughly 8000 movies they have online, it will stop at 1000 and go no further.

Also if you want to search for a title you click Y for search. Then it says "Click here to search". Bitch, I already clicked Y to search, why am I clicking another button?

Trying to binge watch a series is tougher than Netflix. When an episode's over you have to manually go to the next episode to play it. And if you finish a season, you have to go add the next season to your watchlist since they keep their seasons separate.

They've had enough time to steal the Netflix model, so let's get on that, huh?

I'll update this blog to let you know how it's going.

If you want to add it to your watchlist just go here and click on the button!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Amazon Video Direct Part 2

So they finally got us a dashboard. It shows all of my movies, and some chart but it claims my movies aren't "published".

Not sure what that means. If I go search for my movies on Amazon, they're still there to stream.

I do some digging. I send an email when I can't find any answers.

And Amazon responds:
For migrated videos from CreateSpace, these videos will remain live on Amazon, even if you don't have Closed Caption files.

If you wish to submit changes for already existing content to be updated on Amazon by clicking "Publish," your video's will need to meet our Technical Specification requirements that can be found here:


So my movies will stay as is unless I want any changes. And by changes, I assume that means if I want to now upload hi-def movies(which they never accepted before from us indie people). The downside is that I'll have to get subtitles created for each movie, which will be like $90-$120 depending on which movie.

And technically before I got that answer I was uploading the Bounty Subtitles--figured I'd publish it and see what happens. So I upload my subtitles and Amazon asks this--what's your movie? 23.976 drop frame, 23.976 non-drop frame, 24fps, 25fps, 29.97 drop frame or 29.97 non-drop frame.

I'm thinking--are you serious? I have no idea. I sent my movies in as dvds years ago(or uploaded an ISO). Why can't AMAZON look at the file and figure it out.

I take a guess and click Publish. Get a bullshit error:
Video assets: An error occurred while processing the captions/timed text file. This file won't successfully complete the encoding workflows. Please submit a new file

 Thanks for all that detail on what the error was. Technically it's an SRT file(which Amazon says is fine) and it was created by one of the companies Amazon recommends(though I got it done long before this).

So I go through and change it to different fps and keep trying to publish. I get the same error above. Pretty frustrating, so I gave up.

But if they accept it I can then get it on Amazon Prime if I feel like it. Won't be crap for money, but a lot of people haven't seen it who I think would want to see it.