They're setting up a new feature film production company with veteran indie producer Ted Hope as head of production, and will release the films theatrically, and then in video streaming on their Amazon Prime service four weeks later.
Now let's look at the PROS & CONS!!
1. Ted Hope is an experienced producer renowned for his good taste in projects by critics and cinephiles the world over.
2. Despite recent losses & feuds with just about everyone they've ever meet, Amazon is a big operation with deep pockets and a wide reach.
3. The project could open up opportunities to new filmmakers.
1. While Hope is known as an critical and awards darling his record doesn't exactly burn up the box-office. If he's going to survive as the head of production of what I'm pretty sure Amazon wants to be a mainstream studio he's going to have to find a way to translate his tastes into something that will put the maximum number of bums in seats.
2. The reports don't say if Amazon will start their own distribution company or if they'll make an output deal with a distributor like Open Road, eOne, or Lionsgate. Either way Amazon's stomp & destroy business ethic might alienate relations with theatre owners, and their distribution partners.
3. The odds of anyone new getting a chance via Amazon are slimmer than a haute couture model. Look at their TV pilot program that was supposed to bring new voices and ideas into the TV biz, and just about every show that gets produced is by someone with a minimum of 20 years of experience and deep connections in show business. I don't see that practice changing with their feature films.
That's what I think.
What do you think?