Re: two stumpers in one day...
Wed, 20 Sep 2000 13:06:56 -0700 (PDT)

Dear Amy,

I agree with Kristine and Jessica -- there has always been a tradition with
the Hollywood studios to require Swank (and before that Films Inc. and
probably still with Criterion) to insist that nontheatrical accounts cannot
advertize off-campus or off-site. (They'll accept your money, but you can't
make it back.) It is a contractual requirement and not based on any law.

The possible solutions:

1) Call the distributor and request special permission and make your case. If
the salesperson can't help, ask for their boss.
2) If they refuse, don't rent from them, and...
3) Rent from distributors who do permit advertising. These are almost all the
indies such as us (Milestone), New Yorker, Kino, Kit Parker, Zeitgeist, Women
Make Movies and many more. You might get less "popular" films but then again,
they're not in every video store or on television twice a day. I happen to
know that Kino and Milestone are the nicest to libraries wanting to show
videos to the public ;-)
4) What several larger campuses and museums have done is to declare
themselves theatrical accounts (it's like Mel Brooks line in the
2000-year-old man record on how he trained for his chosen profession, "I put
my hand on a rock and said, 'I AM A PSYCHIATRIST!') and have this backed by
their lawyers. Unfortunately, this is proving harder and harder as Swank's
rental gross shrinks every year and this plan has only been accomplished by
35mm accounts.

Dennis Doros
Milestone Film & Video
PO Box 128
Harrington Park, NJ 07640-0128
Phone: (201) 767-3117 or (800) 603-1104
Fax: (201) 767-3035