Sunday, June 19, 2005

"Layer Cake": a partial answer

A few days ago, I wondered why the Brit gangster film "Layer Cake" was not more successful upon its release. A partial answer came from the States, where the local distributor has been complaining that "parallel imports" killed the film's chances of a career. Put simply, rather than wait 12 months for the film to come out, a lot of people simply buy the DVD from the UK or France. Or local retailers import a bunch even before the DVD is released in the US. As it saps the core audience, this hurts the film's chances as a theatrical release.

The obvious answer is not to wait so long for a release. Why does it take up to a year for European films to reach the cinemas? Having said that, the distribution of non-US films in the US is a difficult subject with very low margins for the local distributor. So US readers, don't forget to support your local movie "theater"!

Layer Cake on Amazon US

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Although parallel imports hurt local distributors, it still does not account for global sales being low. If you buy a DVD in France, that purchase goes towards the overall box office tally. So "Layer Cake"'s weak performance had nothing to do with parallel imports. It made 11 mil globally. A weak amount due to other reasons.