Kevin Smith To Distribute Own Film

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Kevin Smith bought rights to his own film, Red State, for $20 at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Red State is an independent horror film that features a cult-like religious group much like the infamous Westboro Baptist Church. The same group that claims “God hates soldiers, fags, and Swedes,” is now enraged at the position his film has taken (even though they haven’t seen it). Shocker.

Kevin Smith has also taken some heat for speaking out against the studio system and seems to think Red State would be better served if he distributed it himself. He plans to take the $4 million flick around city by city and give it proper screenings. Each show will feature a Q&A with Kevin and other cast members, an opportunity to buy props from all of the View Askewniverse movies, and an intimate screening of the film. This will prove to be the best $20 he’s ever spent. There’s no question that he’ll be able to fill every venue; He’s been traveling with his Q&A shows and podcasts for several years now and has developed an extremely loyal following over the past two decades. Even if he doesn’t make the $4 million back on the tour alone, which will itself be a costly undertaking, he will no doubt clean up in DVD sales.

The publicity Red State has already generated because of its “controversial” subject matter and Kevin’s unorthodox plan for distribution has been significant, and will only increase in the upcoming months. I think this story is a big victory for independent film making. Kevin has been burned by the studio distribution model in the past and seems to have a strong understanding of how his art (and all of ours, too) is going to be consumed in the 21st century. There’s no doubt that dude’s got some balls, and his do-it-yourself attitude is something to be admired and replicated by those of us who want a future in entertainment.