By Ray Pride



NEW YORK – OCTOBER 8, 2013 – Alan Klingenstein, Danny Fisher and Jack Fisher today announced their new distribution company, FilmRise.  As the industry continues to evolve, FilmRise approaches distribution in a forward-looking way with its emphasis on worldwide digital distribution and online DVD sales, together with traditional distribution models including big-box retail DVD, television licensing and theatrical releases on select films.
FilmRise is engaged in an aggressive acquisition strategy that has seen the new company hit the ground running with over 2,500 film and television titles in a wide range of genres, from classic television, festival award indies, children’s programming, documentaries, special interest and award-winning foreign language releases.
The company’s acquisitions include over one hundred TV movies from Lifetime and the major broadcast networks, television series including We-TV’s “Women Behind Bars,” TLC’s “Urban Legends,” PBS’ Emmy award winning “The Big Comfy Couch,”” Discovery Kids’ “Popular Mechanics for Kids” and “Deals from the Darkside” from SyFy Channel.
Film titles include digital rights to classics such as John Landis’ “American Werewolf in London,” Franco Zeffirelli’s “Endless Love” and 80’s action movie “Red Scorpion,” to new documentaries such as “OC87: The Obsessive Compulsive, Major Depression, Bipolar, Asperger’s Movie,” which the company released theatrically in 25 U.S. cities.
“I’m thrilled to be in an alliance with industry veterans Danny Fisher and Jack Fisher, whose former company City Lights Media created and produced 63 television shows, including Food Network’s hit series “Chopped,” and financed, produced and distributed dozens of movies and documentaries,” said Alan Klingenstein, Chairman, FilmRise.
“We believe we are revolutionizing the way film and television content is distributed by understanding – and knowing how to leverage – the explosive growth of the digital world, both in terms of direct-to-digital distribution, as well as social media and viral marketing,” said Danny Fisher, CEO, FilmRise.
FilmRise’s titles are in release at all the major big-box retailers including Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble and Target, on line through Amazon Disc on Demand, and digitally on Amazon Prime, Netflix Instant Watch, iTunes, Hulu, VUDU, Xbox, Sony PlayStation, Fandor, Vutopia and other digital platforms. FilmRise is also releasing select films theatrically, licensing films internationally, and licensing to domestic television – cablecast, broadcast, as well as on demand.
The principals behind FilmRise are Alan Klingenstein, Danny Fisher and Jack Fisher. Alan Klingenstein produced such critically acclaimed motion pictures as “Trumbo” and Sundance winner “Two Family House.” Alan served for many years as an investment banker, securities attorney, and chief corporate legal officer. Danny Fisher grew City Lights into a world recognized film and television mini-major. Jack Fisher led City Lights’ production division, overseeing dozens of television series and theatrical features, over 1,000 webisodes, and one of the world’s largest state-of-the-art post-production facilities.                                 
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  1. Roberta says:

    Oh great, another film distribution company…

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon