‘Walks’ strategy hits homes

Filmmakers take pic to VOD before theaters

Everybody walked from the ArcLight to nearby bar Wood & Vine on Oct. 2 for the Los Angeles preem of Magnolia’s “Nobody Walks,” which debuted at Sundance in January.

Director Ry Russo-Young teamed with Lena Dunham to write the film, which stars Olivia Thirlby as a young New York filmmaker who drives a wedge between an L.A. couple played by John Krasinski and Rosemarie DeWitt.

“We were totally basing a lot of it on experiences we’ve had as young women trying to do the female artist thing and the ambiguities of sex and sexuality when you’re trying to make a piece of work,” explained Russo-Young.

She and producer Jonathan Schwartz were in sync regarding the dual meaning of the film’s abstract title. “Nobody walks out of the movie unscathed, and nobody walks in Los Angeles,” said the helmer. “I like the fact that the word ‘body’ is in the title, as it’s very much a movie about human beings and their desires. It captures the New York-Los Angeles thing, and the physicality of the movie.”

The pic, which hits theaters Oct. 12, is available on iTunes and VOD, a distribution strategy that Russo-Young and Schwartz like a lot.

“In every filmmaker’s ideal world, you open up on 3,500 screens, but not every movie is right for that,” said Schwartz. “We’ve sold little films to big companies and bigger films to smaller companies, and put them out in different ways, but this is the first time we’re doing the ultra VOD and then coming out in theaters. It’s obviously worked on a few movies, so I hope that turns out to be the right model for us.”

Russo-Young thinks it is. “How are people in Idaho going to see this movie, at least right now? People want to watch movies on their own time.”

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