Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Indiewire logo

Foreign Cinema Loses Ground with Dreamachine

ReelPolitik By Anthony Kaufman | ReelPolitik April 4, 2007 at 8:54AM

Foreign Cinema Loses Ground with Dreamachine
2

I hate to be the naysayer (although I always am), but Matt Dentler's recent post about foreign cinema's resurgence is completely naive, slightly misguided and ignores widespread changes in the global distribution of foreign cinema -- a shift that I explore in this indieWIRE article, "With Creation of Dreamachine, Foreign-Language Films Face Sleepless Nights Ahead," which explores the Celluloid/HanWay merger and what it means for the state of international art film.

Despite the celebrated success of a few very select group of studio-backed foreign indies ("The Lives of Others," "Pan's Labyrinth"), art-cinema is struggling around the world, according to those I spoke to for the article. Even Celluloid's Hengameh Panahi had to confess that the business she has long staked her reputation on -- by fostering the work of filmmakers like Francois Ozon and Takeshi Kitano -- has irrevocably changed.

"I have to give up on my smaller films, which is hard because I love them," Panahi told me. "At the same time, I realize there is no economy for those movies anymore." By taking on films with less commercial potential, she said, "We're helping the market to become more crowded and we're helping the small distributor to be more fragile."

Foreign-language cinema-lovers better bulk up on memory and software for their computers, because that's exactly where these films are heading in the not-so-distant future. Now is that a bad thing? Maybe not. For Panahi, it's the best way to keep the business healthy, and it may open the door to new audiences where art-house screens are rare. The only other option for the bulk of these smaller films, Panahi told me (which doesn't appear in the article) is film festivals. If Matt Dentler wants to program some foreign art films at SXSW, he may be asked to pay up more dough, because it could be the only way these movies recoup until digital distribution takes off.

Follow us

E-Mail Updates



Recent Comments

By Bob Connors: The thing to remember is the video has some actual data but it's conclusions are far fetched and inaccurate. This is a Progressive propaghand…

Who is "Politizane" and What's Next for the Income Inequality Viral Video

Mar 21th, 2015 8:47am

By Ostlee: This makes very sad reading - i feel for the people of Maldives. Everyone should boycott the island as a holiday destination until Nasheed…

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 13th, 2015 5:35pm

By Ahmed Shahid: Release the first democratically elected president. The only president of Maldives who has reached the people of Maldives, heard them and…

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 12th, 2015 9:37am

By Hanne Neve: Please take care of your country and the climate by freeing your real selektet president.

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 11th, 2015 9:09am

By Iqbal: Please release President Nasheed

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 10th, 2015 10:27pm

By Martha Robertson: I strongly urge the immediate release of Nasheed!

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 10th, 2015 9:37pm

By Ned Rollins: Bad business, going to bite you.

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 10th, 2015 3:47pm

By John Painter: The guy isnt a terrorist.

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 10th, 2015 12:00pm

By Sofia Vera: I support Presdient Nasheed and add my name to this letter of support for his release.

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 10th, 2015 11:14am

By Margarett R Mulkey: A civilized society is required of the current government of the Maldives. The world is watching injustice and crimes, and many realized thes…

Documentary Filmmakers and Activists Call for Release of "Island President" Nasheed

Mar 10th, 2015 10:53am