Film Lounge startup takes distribution online

Revenue from U.K. site would go directly to producers

LONDON -- Genre filmmakers are about to get another distribution option.

Beginning in November, Film Lounge, a U.K.-based Web site aimed squarely at the lads' market, will provide a global digital distribution outlet for indie films.

Founded by Terry Stone, Mike Watson and Anthony Nottage, the Film Lounge site will offer producers and directors a tailored distribution campaign and an opportunity to earn revenue "from distribution that they might otherwise not see," Stone told The Hollywood Reporter on Wednesday. He said that cutting out the sales agent and existing exclusively online will mean an increase in the revenue going directly to the producers.

Stone said he and his team will handpick 60 titles to feature on the site in the first year so as not to offer the potential consumer "too much distraction."

In the first three months of launch, all films will be available to stream or download for a flat fee of 1.99 pounds ($3.90) a pop. That will jump to 4.99 pounds ($10) per film, depending on a star system based on reviews. Targeting males 18-35, all titles will carry an 18 certificate and will be from genres including horror, martial arts and humor.

The plan is to split revenue from downloads or streaming on a quarterly basis with a net monitoring system in place.

Stone said a "conservative estimate" should see each title generate 15,000 downloads a month.

The trio anticipates an expenditure of 3 million pounds ($5.9 million) for the site's first year. Among the titles already signed up for digital distribution is Julian Gilbey's "Reckoning Day."
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