Altavod, a New Distribution Platform for Indie Filmmakers, Launches

Altavod, a new platform pledging to help indie filmmakers more easily distribute and profit from their movies, launched Wednesday. The company’s founders say that it will allow moviemakers to cut out third parties who they usually turn to in order to find distribution platforms. With Altavod, they can upload films themselves and keep more than 90% of revenues. Movies are available to rent and own.

The service is the brainchild of Robert Schwartzman, the director of “The Argument” and “Dreamland,” and the co-founder of Utopia Distribution. Cole Harper, who works at Utopia overseeing product and strategy, helped launch Altavod and will serve as its head of growth.

In an interview, Schwartzman said he was inspired to create the service after conversations with fellow filmmakers who were frustrated by their inability to monetize their work.

“There are a lot of people who are building a new world of how to reach audiences in the film industry right now,” said Schwartzman. “We want to help filmmakers have more autonomy, so they can be hands-on in how their movies are distributed and sold.”

Altavod had a beta launch last spring. Its collaborators include Shout Factory, ICM Partners, Roadside Attractions, Dogwoof, Passion River, Aspiration Entertainment, Giant Pictures, Cold Iron/The Film Arcade, Freestyle Digital Media, Raptor Films, Utopia, Vuulr, and Vidiots. Greenwich Entertainment recently joined the service with their latest theatrical documentaries “Creem: America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine” and “Gordon Lightfoot: If You Could Read My Mind.”

Altavod says it will provide more transparency when it comes to back-end data and analytics around consumer engagement than other services. In addition to allowing filmmakers to get a larger cut of sales and rental money, Altavod says it is helping them get a greater share of profits by cutting out the middleman. Traditionally, filmmakers have turned to third-party services that place their films with various platforms and keep 30% to 40% of the revenues.

“The beauty of our system is there’s no barrier to entry or door you need to knock down to reach us,” said Harper.

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