(Oregon Department of Transportation)
A Snoqualmie filmmaker is set to release a new film in August on an age-old Northwest subject: Bigfoot.
“In history, [the main character] had a Bigfoot sighting about 10 years ago, ”said writer, director and producer Taylor Guterson. “Since then he’s really dedicated his life to proving Bigfoot’s existence and has given up on everything else; family, career, everything, he is deeply into this quest.
Big foot hunting was shot in the woods of North Bend, and the film takes a new approach to marketing and distribution that aims to support struggling local theaters.
“We use the term ‘hyper localized marketing’,” said S. Leigh Savidge, executive producer of the film, CEO of Xenon Pictures and Oscar nominee for screenplay. Straight out of Compton.
“A typical Sony Pictures release model, for example, would release an independent film in New York or Los Angeles,” he continued. “These days studios are releasing movies into the digital realm, which has really created all kinds of problems for independent theaters. So I wanted a regional approach here. If you are going to open a movie like Big foot hunting, you’d better open it in a state like Washington where you have the most Bigfoot sightings in any state across the country.
Big foot hunting will open at the North Bend Theater, Galaxy Theater in Gig Harbor, Galaxy Theater in Monroe, Lynwood Theater on Bainbridge Island and Admiral Theater in West Seattle.
“Our selling point in theaters is that we’ll provide a better spread than the big studios typically offer, and we won’t release it in a digital sphere for 60 days,” Savidge said. “If anyone wants to see this movie, the only place they’ll see it is in these theaters. I believe in regional theaters.
Usually a theater will keep 30% of the profits, but the executives behind Big foot hunting offer a 50/50 split, with a chance of having even more if the film is doing well.
Local marketing tactics are old-fashioned and popular, favoring posters over billboards. Filmmakers are teaming up with chambers of commerce in screening cities to involve local businesses and restaurants in marketing the film, as people often grab a bite before or after watching a film.
“We have companies that put 5 × 8 foot banners on the side of buildings near major intersections, we have yard signs right next to political signs in designated areas, you need to get permits to do that.” , said Savidge. “The interior component is the signage, the t-shirts and things like that. “
Releasing a film in a rural location and giving the community some ownership makes the film even more special. The idea is to make it an economic win / win for local businesses and filmmakers.
“Bainbridge Island, for example, is using the kickoff of this movie to kick off what they call ‘Support the Lynwoods’,” Guterson said. “Opening night is actually a fundraiser for The Lynwood Theater.”
“We’re going to have a trailer that will play on the ferry from Seattle to Winslow, Bainbridge Island,” Savidge said. “You are not going to be able to escape the existence of this film.”
They plan to slowly launch the film from market to market, targeting only where they think they have the most audiences.
“There are Bigfoot communities; I contacted a guy in Humboldt County and he called back right away. We will target our theaters and we will target our markets rather than opening in New York or LA or Chicago. I think it’s the rural communities that are actually the strongest, ”said Savidge.
Big foot hunting opens:
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