The theatrical campaign for 51 Birch Street will kick off on Oct 4th with a free preview screening for IFP members and their guests at NYC's Pioneer Theater. I'll be there for a Q&A, and I'm sure there'll be some kind of informal gathering afterwards at Two Boots across the street. It's a word-of-mouth thingy, so those of you with BIG MOUTHS are particularly welcome. To reserve tickets, go to the IFP website.
The P.R. machine, such as it is (me, Lori, a p/t assistant, an intern, and Truly Indie's Melissa Raddatz), is gearing up. Tomorrow, I'll be interviewed for the AARP Bulletin, which goes out to 29 million AARP members. Next week, I talk to Long Island's Newsday and with Karina Longworth's new Netscape veture. And, oh, by the way, 51 Birch Street will be featured that Sunday in the New York Times Arts & Leisure section. It helps that the film has an eventful storyline and has been received well, but that's pretty decent placement for a film with virtually no marketing budget.
Because of that, we're focusing a huge amount of our energy on online marketing. We're trying to get our trailer placed everywhere, and working hard to get word out to bloggers everywhere, particularly those based in NY and LA. We have NY press screenings on Oct 4th and 12th, and you BIG-MOUTHED bloggers out there can email Melissa for an rsvp. If you can't make it, we'll send a dvd screener if you swear to God or Allah or Whoever you'll write about it.
Had a fun moment tonight. The good folks at Spout.com held a sneak peek of 51 Birch in Grand Rapids and hooked things up so I could do a Q&A afterwards by phone from my apartment. It was an odd experience to make a joke and think you hear a tiny little echo of laughter. It was only after I heard the applause at the end that it really sunk in there had to be at least a hundred people in the theater. I'll be doing an online forum with Spoutsters for the next few days, mostly exchanging tips and advice on how to do online marketing for a "small" film like 51 Birch. Feel free to join in.
There's more to write about but my brain is absolute mush. Not that I went to one, but nobody in film school tells you how hard it is to hawk your film and somehow distinguish it from all the others out there in the marketplace. Harder than making the film, in many ways. Ah, the glamour...