Monday, 20 July 2009
Alternative content is the new buzz word in the film industry - for exhibitors, they are a saving grace that allow otherwise empty cinema screens to be filled with Opera, Theatre or even racing fans. For distributors, they are another piece of competing content taking up valuable screen time that would otherwise be showing their product.
Either way, its a growing market: the amount of alternative content events screened in the UK doubled in 2008 to 67, up from 31 in 2007. Opera experienced the biggest increase, from eight events in 2007 to 39 in 2008. The National Theatre have just joined Covent Garden and the Met in broadcasting their performances, and Helen Mirren in Phedre sold out faster than a Madonna concert.
This trend is on an upward climb and will probably remain that way as cinemas try and reinvent themselves as more than just places to see movies. Multiplexes are banking on 3D - the indies will need alternative content.
Don't be surprised to see cinemas (including this one) broadcasting football World Cup games in 2010.