Kevin Smith: self-distributing Red State, next film as director to be last?

News Simon Brew
24 Jan 2011 - 06:47

The world premiere of Kevin Smith’s Red State has taken place at the Sundance Film Festival. And there were a fair few fireworks afterwards…

Given the fact that we're in the UK, we're not able to enjoy the currently ongoing Sundance Film Festival, and in turn, that means that we didn't get to see the world premiere of Kevin Smith's Red State that took place at the festival. But heck, we wish we'd been there.

Not just to watch the film, which we remain keen to see. But to see what happened afterwards.

In the weeks leading up to the premiere, Kevin Smith had been promising some kind of auction for the distribution rights to the film. But while we wrote about the unusual marketing and distribution campaign for the film here, we - and pretty much everyone else - never saw this one coming.

At the end of the screening, and bearing in mind we're going on third party reports because we weren't there, Smith pulled a left turn. He announced that he himself would be distributing the film, and promptly bought the rights to do so for $20.

He then gave a 20-30 minute speech (depending which report you read) where he discussed, we understand, the unfairness of the movie distribution system. He then announced that Red State would be released on October 19th 2011 under the Smodcast Pictures banner (marking the 17th anniversary of Clerks' release), but in advance of that, he'd be taking the film on the road and showing it in selected cities across the USA. He's announced the initial schedule here.

Slashfilm has about the most comprehensive report on what Smith said (link at the bottom), and they report that he also confirmed that his next film, Hit Somebody, would be his last as director. Again, we weren't in the room, so can't confirm this. But it appears that his intention is to work on producing and distributing movies, amongst many other things, no doubt, in the future.

If that means that more and more indie movies have a chance to break through, then his expertise there would be welcomed. It certainly seems though that Smith, and the worst edges of the Hollywood system, are through.

It sounded a fascinating screening and event to attend, and you can read what Slashfilm had to say about it, here.

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