Roughly 500 independent films with limited distribution are now available through Reframe, a new service from the Tribeca Film Festival that went live overnight. It's yet another effort to use the internet as a low-cost way to widen access to otherwise hard-to-find media. Tribeca hopes to have 10,000 titles in the next year or so, according to the NYT. Most will be available for purchase or rent through as downloads but some will be sold only on DVD due to rights issues.
The service, which includes curated lists, is made possible by funding from John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, among others, and through a partnership with Amazon's (NSDQ: AMZN) CreateSpace that provides digitization at little or no cost in exchange for non-exclusive distribution by Amazon and Reframe. Titles range from the iconic 1960 film Hiroshima Mon Amour (DVD for $29.99) to more current documentaries and films. Very much a work in progress, though, with a number of titles I tried "coming soon" and predominantly DVD only. Also, some films you wouldn't think of as limited release, such as Robert Altman's The Player.
By Staci D. Kramer