×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

John Hegeman, Distant Corners

Business type: Independent studio focusing on original sci-fi, horror, fantasy and cult media

Number of employees: 14

URL: www.distantcorners.com

Job Title: President & CEO Distant Corners Entertainment Group

First ‘Net experience: Working on the “Stargate” Web site

Biggest challenge: Trying to push the online experience as a unique form of entertainment and still make it accessible to the Internet community

Favorite bookmark: SissyFight.com; because “It is an example of how the Internet is a truly unique platform for entertainment”

* * *

Last year’s surprise summer hit “The Blair Witch Project” freaked out not only the audience, but also the studios. Execs could no longer ignore the Internet’s power to connect and motivate millions of movie fans. The ultra-low budget film took in $150 million, and at least some of the marketing success was attributed to the Web-generated hype of John Hegeman.

Hegeman ankled his post as marketing chief at Artisan last spring to launch his horror, sci-fi and fantasy Web site DistantCorners.com in partnership with former Walt Disney Studios topper Joe Roth. But don’t expect Hegeman to be up to all of his old tricks with his new Internet endeavor, which bowed in June.

“I don’t look at DistantCorners and think I’m going to copy ‘Blair Witch,’ ” Hegeman says. “But I have an inherent philosophy that I apply to my projects: Don’t try and shove a project down somebody’s throat. Utilize more of a conditioning process so people will be into what you’re doing for the long haul.”

This “conditioning process,” Hegeman explains, is counter-intuitive to a time-tested Hollywood success strategy.

“Don’t try and explode with your message like you would with a summer movie where you spend $35 million and make it overwhelming for you audience,” Hegeman says. “A site needs to be evolving and involving to create a communal feel. That’s what we tried to do with ‘Blair Witch.’ When you are trying to build a relationship with people it’s often better to do it under the radar of all the competitive noise to really connect with your audience.”

More Digital

  • Amazon Prime

    Amazon Prime India Greenlights ‘Bandits’ Music Series

    Amazon Prime Video India has greenlit original series “Bandish Bandits.” The show is a musical created by Still and Still Media Collective. The series will follow an Indian classical musician bound by tradition and a pop star whose performance skills are greater than her talent. A bandish is a term used to describe a musical [...]

  • Alibaba Buys 8% Stake in Chinese

    Alibaba Buys 8% Stake in Chinese Video Platform Bilibili

    Alibaba has purchased an 8% stake in the Chinese online video platform Bilibili, the official Xinhua news agency reported. Bilibili is one of China’s top video streaming and entertainment platforms, with about 92 million monthly active users and 450 million page-views per day. Founded in 2009, it was listed on the NASDAQ last March. Alibaba’s [...]

  • Clevver-Logo

    Hearst Magazines Buys Clevver's Pop-Culture YouTube Channels After Defy's Demise

    Hearst Magazines has snapped up Clevver, a network of female-skewing lifestyle and pop-culture news YouTube channels that had been owned by now-defunct Defy Media. Clevver was left homeless after Defy’s sudden shutdown in November; its principals said at the time they were looking for a new home. Hearst Magazines sees a digital fit with Clevver’s [...]

  • "Brother" -- Episode 201-- Pictured (l-r):

    CBS Interactive's Marc DeBevoise on Streaming Boom, Content Strategy, and Apple

    Not everyone wants or needs to be Netflix to succeed in the streaming space. And not everyone sees Apple’s enigmatic new service as a threat. Even as rival streaming services offer gobs of content, CBS Interactive’s president and COO Marc DeBevoise sees the company’s targeted original programming strategy continuing to attract viewers to its All [...]

  • Rhett-Link-Good-Mythical-Morning

    Rhett & Link's Mythical Entertainment in Talks to Acquire Smosh (EXCLUSIVE)

    Smosh, the YouTube comedy brand left stranded after parent company Defy Media went belly-up, may be about to get a new business partner. Mythical Entertainment, the entertainment company founded by top YouTube comedy duo Rhett & Link, has been in talks about acquiring the Smosh brand, sources told Variety. Multiple potential buyers came forward to [...]

  • Pokemon Go

    Proposed 'Pokémon Go' Lawsuit Settlement May Remove Poké Stops, Gyms

    A proposed settlement in the class action lawsuit against “Pokémon Go” developer Niantic could remove or change a number of Poké Stops and Gyms in the popular augmented reality game. The proposed settlement was filed in a California court on Thursday and applies to anyone in the U.S. who owns or leases property within 100 meters [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content