Banner
Home Forums Movie Theaters The Sidewalk Most/least favorite movie studios
Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2

TOPIC: Most/least favorite movie studios

Most/least favorite movie studios 11 Jun 2004 09:32 #20387

  • puzzlegut
  • puzzlegut's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 448
  • Karma: 0
I was wondering if anyone has any favorite and least favorite movie studios that they deal with. I know there are a few studios that we prefer to deal with, where as there a couple others that we try to avoid. Did anyone have any major problems with a studio that makes you avoid talking to them if possible?
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 12 Jun 2004 12:16 #20388

  • BurneyFalls
  • BurneyFalls's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 1341
  • Karma: 0
Paramount is my favorite to deal with. Sony, Buena Vista, New Line, MGM, Fox, and Universal are all very friendly and helpful. DreamWorks is wonderful. The small independents will also do what they can for me.

My least favorite: The major not mentioned above.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 12 Jun 2004 15:45 #20389

  • rodeojack
  • rodeojack's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 1242
  • Thank you received: 3
  • Karma: 0
I can't find mine on her list, either!


One of the studios... at the very, very end of "Burney's" list has a tendency to be challenging, too...

Fox & Paramount are my favorites. The other studios (not mentioned above) have been generally great to work with, but those two have stepped up to the mark for us during some tough years. In our minds, they tend to get the most deference when they ask for a "favor"... it's more likely to be a two-way street.

[This message has been edited by rodeojack (edited June 12, 2004).]
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 13 Jun 2004 15:18 #20390

  • BECKWITH1
  • BECKWITH1's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 769
  • Karma: 0
Our least favorite is also mysteriously missing from Burney's list. However, I would like to send kudos to Sony who has gone farther for us than anyone else. BV used to be my favorite and we always ran their stuff in preference to others but we don't feel that way anymore. We've been denied too many prints that we wanted.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 13 Jun 2004 16:22 #20391

  • muviebuf
  • muviebuf's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 686
  • Thank you received: 1
  • Karma: 0
Historically I have found that the distributors that are foreign owned (Sony, Fox and Universal) are the easiest to deal with while those that are American owned (Warners, Disney and Paramount) are more difficult to deal with. I will admit that Paramount has been more reasonable the last few years - especially since they have been in a slump - but this placement on my list derives from the late 80's and early 90's (before they were purchased by Viacom).

Basically I refuse to do business with either Miramax or New Line because of the way they have treated me.


Come on people. What is with this "the one whose name cannot be spoken" nonsense? That is the problem with our business. No one has the guts to tell the distributors off when they have been screwed.

[This message has been edited by muviebuf (edited June 13, 2004).]

[This message has been edited by muviebuf (edited June 13, 2004).]
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 13 Jun 2004 21:26 #20392

  • puzzlegut
  • puzzlegut's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 448
  • Karma: 0
Is there any reason why people are not naming the studios that they dislike?
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 13 Jun 2004 22:08 #20393

  • coryray
  • coryray's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Fresh Boarder
  • Posts: 15
  • Karma: 0
That's almost a self-effident answer Puzzle. The nature of this board is such that digging only a few levels deep, one can learn who each of we posters really are. Though you can't say that any one distributor holds a lock on film exhibition, they certainly do of their own product. And when there's only 7 to 10 Majors, one can't afford to tick off their rep, now can they.

We can all build the finest of film houses, providing the best presentation possible, but it's the distrib's we're beholden to. They provide our means of support. Our ability to put food on the table depends on them providing the product to light the screen. Without 'em, we may as well gut the house and create a warehouse in the space.

The biz is always a crapshoot. No one can guarantee a blockbuster, not today. Consistency does not exist. The maker of last months Big Picture may not have another for years. And we're all just along for the ride.

That's why, in most major markets, megaplexes work and second-run and dollar houses have become a thing of the past. They play 'em 'til they're dead, and unfortunately, that's in about six weeks nowadays.

It'd be stupendous to see a Roadshow presentation once again. I'd bet most here remember pictures playing in the downtown houses for a year or more. I think the last two films I saw like that were 2001 and Mad...Mad World.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 13 Jun 2004 22:55 #20394

  • outaframe
  • outaframe's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 672
  • Karma: 0
CORY nails the facts!... They have our lifesblood in their hands, and you either dance to their tune, or starve... 'Course it's always been that way, but even MORE so now that theaters are just a brief stop along the way to Video, and then on to Cable... Soon as they can eliminate the one small step we provide, you can rest assured they will!...
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 13 Jun 2004 23:56 #20395

  • muviebuf
  • muviebuf's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 686
  • Thank you received: 1
  • Karma: 0
As long as an exhibitor thinks that he or she can't live without a given distributor (or two), then mentally the studios will have the upper hand with that person.

What really should be acknowledged is that this business is a 'defacto' partnership (or marriage). In every partnership (or marriage) there is give and take on both sides. When the give-and-take balance is lost then it becomes time to re-evaluate whether to continue the relationship. Sadly today most exhibitors live in fear of missing even one big picture.

I have always admired Garth Dubinsky and his stand against Sony Pictures back in 1987 (when Sony was then owned by Coca-Cola). Dubinsky at that time was head of Lowes/Cineplex-Odeon chain. Most of the LCE theatres in the major markets (including many large single screens) were to open "The Last Emporer" for Christmas 1987. At the last second Sony bumped Emporer back to February 1988 (for the academy awards) leaving many LCE theatres without a major picture to play for that Christmas (most other releases had already been contracted for by competing theatres and that was back in the days of product splitting before ultra wide releases). So what did Dubinsky do? Well besides refusing to play further Sony pics, he ordered that all of the LCE theatres in the entire nation would also stop serving Coke. The dispute was settled with both sides realizing that it is a joint relationship.




[This message has been edited by muviebuf (edited June 14, 2004).]
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 14 Jun 2004 01:57 #20396

  • outaframe
  • outaframe's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 672
  • Karma: 0
Yes, we could probably make do without any product from one or two studios for a short time, but eventually the pendulum swings in such a way that those very studios will have the only worthwhile product available, while the sources we had been using since then, have a lineup of dogs... You cannot afford to burn any bridges, just to demonstrate that you are going to "show them!"... Most of the posters here are small independents, and lack the clout (and screen count) of Dubinski, so we have to TRY and live in peace with ALL the distributors... Over the long pull, MOST of the distributors have instituted unfair and abusive policies at one time or another, and then relaxed them after the whole industry slacked off buying from them, but that one exhibitor or even a small circuit can change their tactics by boycotting their pictures amounts to cutting off your nose to spite your face!... We have to try to maintain good relations will ALL the studios, and not recognizing that we are under their thumb is sticking your head in the sand... NATO is SUPPOSED to be looking after our interests, but they too tend to be more concerned with the Big Boys, so the little guy is left to row his own canoe... Money talks, but fairness, justice, right, good intentions, etc. AND a dollar will buy you a cup of coffee, at a cut-rate diner, and that's about ALL...
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 14 Jun 2004 12:59 #20397

  • rodeojack
  • rodeojack's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 1242
  • Thank you received: 3
  • Karma: 0
I might add to this that the studios are bound by most of the laws that any other business is. In a competitive arena, it's not hard to see situations you might think would fall under antitrust or unfair competitive business practices... which you certainly can battle out in court... and could conceivably win. There are lots of good entertainment lawyers that are willing to take on a case... and the studios ARE sensitive to it if they THINK you'd really go that far.

The problem is that YOU take on the initial risk of hiring the lawyer and basically "pulling the trigger". Not a lot of small operators have the resources to go after a major studio that might be fudging on the rules. It goes without saying that if you go after them legally, you'd better be right because these people have memories that would make an elephant blush.

This business is a big game. Parts of it I don't like. Others, I can live with... and I've learned to play it well enough that I can make a decent living without stressing too much over the idiosynchrasies of a business that's no longer run by showmen.

Oh... the ones I don't like actually do know it. They don't care... and I know that, too. When you have 7 screens and are working with a company that regularly deals with 6,000 screen monsters, you have to accept that your voice is easy to lose in the crowd. I don't think that sticking my attitude about it in detail on a public board is a real smart thing to do. What'd be next?.. naming the studio bookers I've had bad relations with over the years? Nahhh.... those of us who've run into them know who they are already!


[This message has been edited by rodeojack (edited June 14, 2004).]
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 14 Jun 2004 17:05 #20398

  • Mike
  • Mike's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Administrator
  • Posts: 5025
  • Thank you received: 41
  • Karma: 15
From time to time: al the distribs have been hard to deal with at one time or another. So much of this is a personal biz and it's about relationship marketing as much as anything. I work to have a good relationship with all the reps. I believe that it is to my advantage to have an open door with all the distribs: who knows what they'll have some day. Who would have thunk that New Line would take on LTR? That Paramount would stumble? That my favorite rep ever-of all would leave WB? Etc. Etc.Each in their turn runs hot and cold and have hits and misses. I believe in treating them the way I want to be treated. (and I'm not a sado-masochist).... it usually works.

Michael Hurley
Impresario
Michael Hurley
Impresario
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 14 Jun 2004 17:07 #20399

  • rodeojack
  • rodeojack's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 1242
  • Thank you received: 3
  • Karma: 0
That puts it well, Mike.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 15 Jun 2004 09:59 #20400

  • puzzlegut
  • puzzlegut's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 448
  • Karma: 0
I can understand not wanting to piss off the distributors because if you make them mad , then they won't let you get one of their movies, especially if it's going to be big. However, what is the point in trying to be nice to a studio that will do nothing for you and treats you like crap?

We've had major problems with one studio (strangely enough, it is a studio which most of you have claimed to be one of your favorites to deal with). This all started back in 2000 when we bought our single screen. Even though we only showed movies on the weekends and got the movies at least 1 to 2 months after they've been released, this studio would still charge quite a bit for their prints in comparision to other studios. There was one movie that we wanted to show from this studio but they wouldn't let us have it for after 3 months and even by then, they still wanted an arm and a leg and we knew we wouldn't have made enough money to play that film.

Another problem ensued and broke the camel's back. We were all set and scheduled to play one of their movies. A day or two before we were set to play this movie, the studio called us and told us we couldn't show their movie because "supposedly" they didn't have certain documents signed and they were affraid they weren't going to get their money (even though we had done business with them for at least a year). We begged and pleaded to get that movie since we had advertised it and we were even willing to bank wire them the money so we could get it but they wouldn't send it. We ended up driving to another theater and getting their print of another movie from a different studio and showed that in its place. After that, we didn't talk to them for about 2 years.

We didn't start dealing with that stuido again until we bought our 4 screen last year. Strangley enough when we wanted to move one of their prints from the 4 screen to the 1 screen, they said they had all of our information from our 1 screen (even though they said they didn't have it all a few years before).

The next problem took place earlier this year. We had a print of one of their movies at Christmas time and we had it for at least 9 weeks at our 4-screen. On the 9th week we asked if we could move our print of the movie to our single screen and they said no because we are only a "part-time" theater. I guess the studio would rather have us drop the print and let it sit on the shelf collecting dust than let us transfer it and still make some money. I don't know what the big deal was because other studios let us open their movies (Spiderman, Men in Black 2, Shrek 2) on the break and only during our normal weekend hours. We ended up bringing that print of the movie to our single screen a week or 2 later and even though the movie was out for about 3 months, we still did very well with it.

The most recent problem came this past week. We wanted to show their movie that opened this past week except they wouldn't tell us if we could have it until the week before. We think they were mad at us because we didn't want to show their movie that opened at the end of May (during the past 4 years, this is the first time we can remember this studio actually calling us and asking us to play one of their movies). The genre of that movie does not tend to play well with our market so we didn't think their movie would play well and told them no. I think they just wanted to get back at us.

After reading this, how can we still play "nice" with the studio when they obviously could care less about doing business with us?
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Re: Most/least favorite movie studios 15 Jun 2004 10:35 #20401

  • jimor
  • jimor's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 395
  • Karma: 0
I wonder if the situation with bookers or distrib. agents isn't the same as now pervades most of the rest of the 'customer service' types? I wonder if they too do not work on a secret commission from the distribs or studios to push or allow some titles with SOME customers (the exhibitors) and to deny other titles to other customers, based upon what the percentage of sales commission is that they expect to receive. Wouldn't surprise me, since very few people and no buisinesses have any morals anymore, and live entirely for money and the 'bottom line.' If this is true, forget about any 'personal relationships' since you will get whatever makes that person the most money that day, week, or month -- according to the orders their bosses send out. Did you forget that it is all about money? How could you?!
Jim R. (new E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) member: www.HistoricTheatres.org
The administrator has disabled public write access.
  • Page:
  • 1
  • 2
Time to create page: 0.237 seconds
attraction attraction
attraction
attraction
attraction
attraction