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The Self-Distribution Model: Indie Movies Following in the Footsteps of ‘Bottle Shock,’ ‘Red State’ and More

Studio filmmaking and independent filmmaking both have their ups and downs, but a definite up of making a feature under the studio umbrella is guaranteed distribution. You can pour loads of money into your promotional campaign and travel from festival to festival, but, in the end, there’s certainly no guarantee a distributor will agree to show your film, let alone help you make your money back.

So, what can you do? After dropping tons of cash to actually make your film and also putting tons of time, energy and passion into it, you’re not going to let it go unseen, right? Well, if you’re capable to self-distributing, hopefully not. It isn’t easy and requires a great deal of work, but some people do it. In fact, come this weekend, writer-director David Grubin and producer Michael Hausman are doing just that with their feature, Downtown Express.

The film is about a young Russian violinist named Sasha (Phillippe Quint). Currently at Julliard on a scholarship, Sasha is preparing for a recital that could solidify a promising future. However, when a bohemian singer-songwriter named Ramona (Nellie McKay) comes into his life, he both falls for her and joins her band, forcing him to straddle both sides of a musical divide.

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