Girl Rising, an independent film shedding light on the impact of improving education for girls around the world, could arrive in your local theater for the movie’s official March 7 rollout.
How? If enough people in you specific community request a viewing of Girl Rising — via online theatrical distribution service Gathr — you’ll earn a screening.
“We’re trying to start a movement, and Gathr’s model puts the engine of that movement into the hands of the people who care most about this issue,” Girl Rising director Richard Robbins told Mashable. “That’s a really powerful idea.”
“We think that, given the limited resources that independent movies like ours have to find an audience, the traditional distribution model is totally outdated,” Robbins said.
The indie flick tells the story of nine young girls “born in unforgiving circumstances” from India, Peru, Haiti, Ethiopia and Cambodia. Among the celebrities lending their voices to Girl Rising are Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Salma Hayek, Selena Gomez and Alicia Keys.
CNN Films will also distribute Girl Rising, which previewed at the Sundance Film Festival.
Quick Q&A With ‘Girl Rising’ Director Richard Robbins
Note: Interview was conducted in January via email
Mashable: Why should other filmmakers approach film distribution like you are doing?
Throwing your hard earned dollars after the kind of broad based advertising that traditional movies pursue is lunacy. You know who your audience is — you know how to reach them. There is no way the people who figure out how to market Batman know how to get people to see your movie. So why would you put them in charge? Of course it’s more work for the film makers, but you’ve come this far, why give up now?
At every step of the way, we have tried to cast aside the rules and the models that don’t make sense for what we are trying to do. We’re trying to create real change in the world. This film is our tool. But we think it’s nuts to work with outmoded models of filmmaking, of advocacy, or of distribution. It’s 2013, so why would we distribute a film based on a model designed in 1991?
Mashable: Do you have any initial stats to share regarding Gathr and the film?
We have just launched with Gathr, and already we’ve had hundreds of people sign up to captain screenings all across the country. And they have only seen 90 seconds of this film. That’s extraordinary. Right now is crunch time for people to step up and host a Girl Rising screening in their local movie theater. We have a goal of 1,000 screenings the weekend the film premieres on March 7. Given the interest in the film, the remarkable actresses, talented writers, and rich stories, I am confident we can hit if not surpass this target. … You need about fifty people locked in to confirm, or “tip,” a screening. People won’t be charged the ticket fee until the screening is 100 percent confirmed. And even then, a portion of ticket sales go to the 10×10 Fund for Girls’ Education. This supports our nonprofit partners who are on the ground, helping to get girls into school every day around the globe.