"A2E was quite honestly a watershed moment for me as a producer regarding the way I think about financing and distribution."
—Tommy Oliver, director/producer of A2E film 1982
"This is an incredibly exciting time for filmmakers. But it's also unrealistic to expect them to wake up one morning, take off their creative hat and put on a marketing one, and know what to do next. That's why filling a room full of filmmakers, distribution experts, and technology innovators for a weekend seems like such a simple idea—after the experience, I think it's borderline criminal it hasn't been done until now.”
—Dylan Marchetti, A2E distribution consultant from Variance Films
"A2E is a giant step away from the abyss into which the indie film business and the culture of cinema is rapidly slipping. Kudos to everyone at the San Francisco Film Society."
—Adam Collis, director of A2E film Car Dogs
"A2E and the San Francisco Film Society share a sense of purpose for the future of independent film and I was honored to share the ground floor with other innovators helping to mold what can happen next in direct distribution."
—Nolan Gallagher, founder and CEO of A2E tech partner Gravitas Ventures
The San Francisco Film Society is the first film support organization to embrace entrepreneurial training for artists as a core program. Launched in 2013 as part of the 56th San Francisco International Film Festival, A2E (Artist To Entrepreneur) has already had a significant impact in its initial pilot phase.
By Eric Kohn (April 1, 2013)
By Cy Musiker (May 3, 2013)
By Emily Best (May 6, 2013)
By Nora Poggi (May 7, 2013)
By Alison Willmore (May 7, 2013)
By Michael Guillen (May 13, 2013)
Lone Star Film Society
By Alec Jhangiani (May 13, 2013)
By Alison Willmore (May 23, 2013)
Current Challenges in the Film Industry & Culture
The digital revolution has drastically changed the film business, but the industry has been slow to adapt. Technological innovations have lowered the barrier to entry and the costs of production, marketing and distribution. The film industry’s reliance on practices based on scarcity of content, centralization of content control, and the hope of mass-market consumption are no longer applicable to most of the work that today’s filmmakers generate.
An abundance of content—entirely accessible at any time anywhere on any device—requires different methods of monetization than the film business has traditionally employed. Filmmakers must now take full responsibility for their work throughout the entire process, and learn to build a business around their art. They must know how to budget, schedule, and project revenue. Filmmakers must learn to collaborate in new ways and engage audiences from project inception to release. Transparency, access, and managed risk will prove the best accelerators.
A New Paradigm Requires New Training
The San Francisco Film Society has begun piloting A2E programs with a view to building a global, sustainable, and educated class of artist/entrepreneurs and to cultivate the financial backers who support them. It is by ensuring that artists and their supporters are direct financial beneficiaries of the work they generate that we preserve and advance individual artists and film culture as a whole.