Industry Eyes On-Line Film Financing
Entertainment Law & Finance – November 1997The clear message of a recent seminar on the viability of raising capital for film projects over the Internet was that, while the World Wide Web may theoretically be a great way to reach investors, it’s too early to call it a solid option. The meeting was co-sponsored by Webcinema, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the Internet as a way to “finance, create, produce, distribute and market independent films,” and the New York County Lawyers Association and the idea of providing initial public offerings (IPO’S) or private placements over the Internet can not be dismissed out of hand.
|It’s Showtime! with Alan Simpson – Film Financing on the Net|
Com Link – November 12th 1997The overall impression given by the panelists was, “Don’t bother!” It was an interesting series of presentations but did little to answer any questions on raising financing on the Internet. New York creates it’s huge wealth from tried and tested financial transactions. The Lawyers get their equally large incomes from these institutions. Therefore neither New York, nor the New York legal profession wants to hear about innovative ways for a movie producer in South Dakota to raise large amounts of money, over the Internet. But Jonathan Sarno and Steven Masur tried, and made a packed audience think. It was a very well attended conference, with probably around 150 lawyers, producers and movie wannabes present. The number of producers looking for $1 -$5,000,000 was quite surprising, showing a very energetic production base, again emerging in New York. The Web’s an Old Trick to Dobermann Director
Wired – July 30, 1997Long before Godzilla or Kevin Costner had production updates of their films on their Web sites, French director Jan Kounen began packing his home on the Web with information about his obscure films, from short debuts to the mid-length cult film Vibroboy, which is still playing in Paris after two years. “At first he said it was just an American thing” says Webcinema’s Jonathan Sarno, explaining how he dragged a reluctant Kounen onto the Internet. The two had met at a film festival, and Sarno called his French friend every day until he found an Internet provider. “It took about a year to get Jan to set up an email account, then he created the first French film site. Bravo.”…. Webcinema Continues to Bring the Web and Film Community Together
@NY Newsletter – May 5, 1997THE BALMY AIR, the murky waters of the Hudson, the aromatic fish smells of the docks, the stars in the sky, the great salsa band – what could make a night out on the town better?! Kudos to Jonathan Sarno and his Webcinema group in conjunction with Troma Films, for putting on a nice party at the Frying Pan docked off the Chelsea Piers on May 3. Despite slightly inclement weather, about 300 people showed up. There was a special appearance from Sergeant Kabuki, NYPD, who I got to speak with about his charitable works. Donned in theatrical make up and costume, Sgt. Kabuki told me how he has spent the last 25 years helping others do independent films, as well as keeping our streets safe! Other happy revelers included Chan Suh of Agency.com, Martin Kane and Bill Carmody. We even were privy to an impromptu display of fireworks, compliments of some other event down river!…. Silicon Alley Revels with NY Film World
Wired – May 5, 1997In the rescued hull of a barnacle-encrusted boat, Silicon Alley digerati and New York independent film producers came together Saturday to schmooze and revel at the first annual Filmmakers and Webmasters Spring Ball. The ball, said organizer Jonathan Sarno of Webcinema, was intended to bridge the yawning gap between indie film and Web start-ups, over beers in the captain’s galley. “[The Web and film communities] just don’t know each other,” Sarno said. “We need to create a kind of third community where they can come together.” …. New York’s New-Media Haven For Independent Filmmakers
New York Times – February 10, 1997When the wholesale fishmongers and fruit distributors clear out of the dark neighborhood on the far west side of Chelsea every evening, they’ve traditionally been replaced by practitioners of the world’s oldest profession. But these days the evening workers in the neighborhood are more likely to be practitioners of the world’s youngest profession, new-media filmmaking…. VDO Sponsors Webcinema Independent Film Site
Metropolis Media – July 25th, 1997″The VDO Indies site creates a whole new way for the independent film community to show its work and to connect with distributors and investors,” said Jonathan Sarno, an independent New York filmmaker and founder of Webcinema, a nonprofit corporation fostering independent film production. “It broadens the independent filmmaker’s market and has the potential of significantly changing the way movies get financed and distributed.”… Sony to Showcase Digital Filmmaking in New York
indieWIRE 1 August 8, 1996Sony will be showcasing its digital filmmaking technology during a meeting of New York City’s Webciinema on Monday. Dan Nicholson, National Training Manager for Sony will present a demo of Sony Digital Proconsumer Cameras and will discuss the technology. Sony will be creating a section on their website where selected independent filmmakers can post their experience using the Sony Digital Cameras. They will also be loaning their digital cameras to filmmakers and providing Sony Digital tape to create digital films….