Banksy’s Film Gets Unique Distribution Deal

You might remember back in early February when street artist extraordinaire, Banksy, was burning up the Sundance Film Festival with his directorial debut, Exit Through the Gift Shop. While it was one of the top films to make sure to see during the fest, the usual progression is that such a buzzed about film would find a distributor and make its way into theaters across the country. Exit is now gearing up to do that, but in a far more complicated, weirder way (you expected simplicity from the mysterious and tricky Banksy?). The film apparently received offers for distribution from studios, but declined them in favor of doing running other, more lo-fi method of getting the film out, via Cinetic Media, the company who represented Banksy’s film at Sundance (not being in the business, we’re not entirely sure the logistics of how this works or why exactly it’s so bizarre). The film will make its debut first in San Francisco and New York on April 16th and then branch out from there, assuming all goes well. Here’s a bit:

“The 20th Century distribution model involved the transfer of rights for 15 to 20 years to distributors who said, ‘We have the access and knowledge you don’t, give us your film,'” [Cinetic’s John Sloss] said. “Now, there are a lot of high quality distribution and marketing execs for hire, and in the 21st Century, is the other model always necessary? We showed this to the head of Landmark Theaters, and he loved it. When Banksy has such an ability to generate awareness, do we really need significant P&A when so much of what Banksy does is viral?”