A fun day in the park with my family…
“Strings” Short Film (Directed By Rik Cordero) (by Three21Media)
Jared Evan - “It’s Over” (Directed By Rik Cordero)
Action Bronson x Party Supplies - “Steve Wynn” (Directed By Rik Cordero)
The Kickdrums feat. Rockie Fresh & DZ Deathrays - “Want My Blood” (Directed By Rik Cordero) (by Three21Media)
“THE DIRECTOR’S HUB” EP9 - Weather / Dir. Artemus Jenkins (by Three21Media)
Just wanted to give a personal thank you to everyone who attended Friday’s screening of “Starla” at the NYIT Auditorium. It was an incredible turnout and I was truly humbled by the response to the movie. Thank you for supporting independent filmmaking and the hard work of all the special individuals who were involved in the process.
With that said, I’d like to share “Starla” with you for free on Channel Three/21, my YouTube partner page. This method of distribution was brought up during the Q&A panel which initiated an interesting discussion about the logic of holding on to your indie film with the hopes of major film festival selections or distribution deals. I don’t remember exactly what I said but I’m pretty sure I was rambling, hopefully I can clarify it now.
The Festival Temptation
After our initial cast and crew screening of “Starla”, I was excited. It seemed very straightforward that I could attempt to screen it in as many festivals as possible and get the film distributed worldwide. We had some positive feedback from reputable programmers but ultimately “Starla” didn’t get selected to any of them (although Nancy won a well-deserved online Indie Fest Award for Best Leading Actress). I chalked it up to the economy and the shrinking wallets of the festivals who must rely on screening fees and sponsors to keep the lights on. Long standing relationships with programmers and agencies, a high concept genre picture, and celebrity talent are things we didn’t have. “Starla” is a slow burn, micro budget drama about the death of a child. Not the most marketable film for anyone in charge of the ROI of a festival. I can dig it.
BVEW + Three/21 Screening Event
Like many other filmmakers I decided to stop waiting and chose to screen the film with my own resources. That meant utilizing key relationships with like minded individuals such as Alex Cirillo and Dani Faith Leonard at Big Vision Empty Wallet. I presented my vision of not only holding a screening event but to also make it a communal filmmaker friendly experience. I explained my reasons for wanting to premiere it online and they were 100 percent supportive of it.
“Starla” and YouTube
As we began to promote the event I started to ask myself how I defined success as an indie feature filmmaker. This meant separating myself from my commercial work and focusing on what I really wanted: viewers. The spirit of indie filmmaking has almost always been about not having enough money to be what you really want to be. But after making “Starla” I realized I made the exact film I set out to make. Obviously I didn’t set out to make money with a film like this. I didn’t shoot beyond my means and I’m still friends with everyone who worked on it. At the Q&A someone asked me if I could do anything differently what would it be? And I said absolutely nothing. It was made at the right time with the right people who gave it their all. So that meant that if I could break even and not piss anyone off, there’s a good chance I could probably get another feature off the ground. So what does YouTube have to do with all of this? Well since 2007 Channel Three/21 has been a part of YouTube’s Partner Program which allows us to activate targeted advertising on selected videos. This doesn’t mean that every video can generate decent revenue but the more views you can get, the more successful you can be. At the click of a button I now have the ability to reach millions of people around the world at any given moment. The slight tradeoff is having a 1-3 minute commercial play before and after the film but to me that’s worth it. Although there’s nothing like the feeling of screening your feature in a dark theater for the first time, the ability to reach millions of theatergoers with a micro budget indie is near impossible. I was tempted to say “with a few exceptions” but that would mean regressing back to “The Festival Temptation”.
Now anyone can watch “Starla” at their own convenience. You can view it in glorious 1080p resolution on your Apple or Google TV, on your tablet or laptop, and even your smart phone. I know “Starla” is an emotionally heavy film and not exactly the sort of thing you replay over and over again. All I ask is that you share it with one person in your life who will watch this movie and become inspired or moved by it. Maybe they’re an aspiring filmmaker, have dealt with the loss of a loved one, are into running or physical activity as therapy, or are simply indie film fans. Please share it with them and ask them to share it with one person in their lives. I couldn’t have made this without you guys and I can’t wait to share the next one with all of you. Peace!
Statik Selektah & Termanology - 1982 “Up Every Night” (Directed By Rik Cordero)
Rik Cordero Talks Working With Jay-Z & Getting Involved In Directing
Stalley - “Everything New” (Directed by Rik Cordero)
“Stranded: The Closing of Peninsula Hospital Center” Documentary (by Three21Media)
Start Again - D-Pryde (by DprydeMusic)