Talk to any short filmmaker and while they love the internet for getting their work seen by audiences and industry, they usually fell in love with movies via the cinema. Shorts used to run in front of feature length work at theaters they note, why can’t we bring that back?
Well, Indiewire reports that new outfit Neon is thinking the same way, starting a short film division. Starting today they will showcase Peter Huang’s festival hit 5 Films About Technology in front of screenings of (S/W Alum!) Nacho Vigolondo’s Anne Hathaway-starring feature, Colossal.
Neon is a new distributor from indie-veterans Tim League (Alamo Drafthouse) and Tom Quinn (Radius TWC). For more information, Eric Kohn wrote a great piece last month about the startup, and the opportunity they see in pushing bold, youth-oriented filmmaking to audiences.
Screening shorts in front of features is still common practice at film festivals and for kid-focused animation studios like Pixar, but has not made a comeback in US theaters as a whole. It has for some years been used as a differentiating element for individual theaters and chains, especially high-end drink and food-service cinemas in major metropolises, but these efforts are infrequent. What’s noteworthy then about this push is its potential reach—rather than being the initiative of a theater chain, even one as lauded as Alamo Drafthouse, it is from the distributor itself. Colossal is a limited opening, debuting in only 4 theaters, but, if early returns and word of mouth is strong, we expect that to increase significantly over the coming weeks.
For those of you weaned on the instant gratification of internet releases for your shorts watching though, never fear. Thanks to web distribution from Condé Nast, we’ll be showcasing Peter’s short on this site next Wednesday!