Filmmaker Jamie Meltzer’s OFF THE CHARTS: The Song-Poem Story is currently available to watch online. Learn about his online distribution strategy and how he embraced various social networking tools.
OFF THE CHARTS: The Song-Poem Story exposes the strange underworld of the song-poem industry. Like a warped fun-house mirror, the song-poem industry has run parallel to the mainstream music business for close to a century; it's estimated that over 200,000 song-poems have been recorded since 1900.
Originally airing several years ago on Independent Lens, Jamie Meltzer sees multiple opportunities online by reaching a new digitally engaged audience. He also is excited by the idea of encouraging viewership through social networking sites and providing a space for debates and exchanges. “I’m now looking at ways to change my approach to filmmaking and storytelling as people turn to the Internet,” he said. “There are so many possibilities. I recently started a website with a few friends that comes up with filmmaking challenges. Each month, we take a set of technical, formal or thematic limitations and then make a short film according to whatever rules are set.” Meltzer explained it’s an effective tool to gauge how people approach different problems and interpret rules in their own way. Check out the site and submit a film >>
As more people get their content online, Meltzer has been turning to sites like Hulu and SnagFilms. “It’s a whole new way of getting a film seen and fulfills the need of instant gratification to watch a film in its entirety right away. At the same time, it also encourages people to buy downloads or DVDs.” Meltzer is currently working on LA CAMINATA, which looks at a small town in central Mexico decimated by the effects of migration to the United States. He is already thinking about distribution opportunities on SnagFilms as well as educational DVD and TV broadcast distributions. OFF THE CHARTS and other full-length Independent Lens programs are available on our digital partners.
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