By mattdentler | Matt Dentler's Blog August 14, 2009 at 9:12AM
Forget DVD or TV, how about USB? Canadian documentary favorite Ron Mann has launched a very unique and totally cool distribution strategy for his new film, Know Your Mushrooms. He's released a copy of the film on USB sticks that resemble the titular plant. Behold:
I think it's genius, and it doesn't prevent Ron from making the film available on a DVD or broadcast television. This is just another form of "home video," like making something available on DVD and iTunes and Netflix streaming, all at the same time. The CBC spoke with him about the plan:
Last fall, British company PNY offered a 2GB flash drive for sale in Europe pre-loaded with the 1984 hit Ghostbusters. However, that drive contained digital rights management software in an attempt to prevent viewers from copying or sharing the film.
In Mann's initiative, billed as a North American first, he encourages people to upload Know Your Mushrooms from the 4GB, mushroom-shaped drives and distribute it to others.
The director's initial order of 500 drives — which he's offered for sale at $59.99 as part of a special edition set to hit stores Sept. 1 — has nearly sold out. A second run of mushroom flash drives is in the works, while a more traditional DVD release is also scheduled for this fall.
"We did this as a fun project. It wasn't as a commercial venture," he said. "As it turns out, it's hugely popular and we're now thinking of doing a number of films like this."