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Booking Regulations 04 May 2007 14:57 #15061

  • Luca
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I'm located in Oregon and I'm looking to open a theater. I'm wondering how to find out about booking regulations. I've heard two competing theaters can't book the same film if they are in close proximity of each other. How can I find out how this is laid out? Also, is there a good online resource for booking contact information for studios and distribution companies?
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Re: Booking Regulations 11 May 2007 17:20 #15062

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Luca:
I'm located in Oregon and I'm looking to open a theater. I'm wondering how to find out about booking regulations. I've heard two competing theaters can't book the same film if they are in close proximity of each other. How can I find out how this is laid out? Also, is there a good online resource for booking contact information for studios and distribution companies?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I'd like to find any source material for these guidelines, too.



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Re: Booking Regulations 11 May 2007 21:41 #15063

  • Cinemateer
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I've searched high and low for what "close proximity" means and nobody seems to have an easy answer. It appears it depends on the population density. If a town has, say, 10,000 people within 5 miles, only one theater. If there are 100,000 people within 5 miles, many theaters would be supported. The rule of thumb I've heard and used is 10,000 people per screen within a 10 mile radius. Maybe someone else has a different rule of thumb?

And we have to contact each studio individually. This whole process is very arbitrary and archaic. It would be amazing if someone would create and update a list of studio contact information online.
"In a place like this, the magic is all around you. The trick is to see it." -Martin Landau
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Re: Booking Regulations 15 May 2007 12:41 #15064

  • Mike
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contact info is at your fingertips. Just call a few of them. Order a year of Film Journal or Box Office Mag. Purchase the IME guidebook. All names and numbers are there. Then make your calls. They'll talk to you. http://www.bigscreenbiz.com/directory/DirList.cfm?TID=1&STID=6 And you can try these too.

It's an odd industry. Stuff is not on the surface. But for 75.00 you can have all the phone and e mails you need.

Michael Hurley
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Michael Hurley
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Re: Booking Regulations 15 May 2007 19:57 #15065

  • Luca
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Thanks Michael. What's the IME guidebook, and where can I find it?
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Re: Booking Regulations 17 May 2007 16:07 #15066

  • cft
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Opening weekend of Spiderman 3, every theatre here had it INCLUDING both drive-ins located 15 mi proximity from 2 multi-plexes.
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Re: Booking Regulations 18 May 2007 06:01 #15067

  • SamCat
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As I understand it it depends upon the money you give back to the distributor and how much extra $$$$ you create to the distributor from being there.

Let's look at some scenarios.

Distributor A
Has a 35mm print, for a City of one million people, the distributor decides to spend $3000 per print on advertising in the city and it costs the distributor say $2000 to make and transport each print.
So each print costs the distributor $5000 with no profit or book work.

The distributor expects to take in say $150,000 for the city which gives the distributor say $60,000 Gross(40%). Which works out to be $1000 per print Gross profit.

If the distributor feels that you will take less than his break even for the movie then as a business decision he may be forced through a financial decision to not offer you a print.

Let's say the distributor feels that you will only Gross $6000 for the season , then he will lose money supplying you the print so he will likely refuse your request for the print.As from the $6000 he only receives $2400 from your Gross (40%).

If there are two cinemas in the same town then and he feels that he will make more money by offering only one location the print then he will likely do that.
For instance he may feel that the movie in that town will only Gross $10,000 with one cinema and $12,000 is he plays the print in two locations. Then an extra $2000 Gross for more print costs wouldn't be worth it for them. Then it will be a financial decision to just have it in one location as the market is not big enough for two locations to make money for the distributor.

If you can prove that you will make more money to the distributor and by playing the print you will Gross more money to the distributor than just one location then you may have a chance of obtaining the print.

Anyway most of the time it is all a competition of figures and making extra money for the distributor.

In one of our locations we are about 10 minutes drive in a town of about 130,000 people. The town is spaced out and most people who live on our locations side of town weren't going to the movies. We moved in in a less populated area from our competition and immediately improved the Gross figures for the area enough to beat our competitors figures and make them work hard to keep their market share and to promote more people going to the movies. As a result the Gross of the area has probably doubled and not halved.
The distributors are happy as it gives more money in their pocket, improves the Gross figures of their movie, enables their advertising $$$ to go further and promotes more people going to the movies.
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Re: Booking Regulations 20 May 2007 13:41 #15068

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SamCat, that is an excellent explanation- thank you. That does make sense... BUT how does one determine if they will be able to get prints BEFORE opening a theater? How can the number of prints you will be able to receive be predicted? It's a huge waste of money to open a theater, or even start a business plan for one, if you will not be able to get prints due to competition in close proximity. Do you think a person can get that information by contacting each distributor individually?
"In a place like this, the magic is all around you. The trick is to see it." -Martin Landau
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