Berlin-based Cinemarket is to use blockchain technology to create a secure and transparent online platform for rights transactions.
Unlike other ventures with mass market ambitions, Cinemarket pitches itself as a tightly curated venue. It aims to put an emphasis on work by emerging directors, adding completed films on a monthly basis.
Buyers can scout for available rights, watch films, submit offers, negotiate contracts and make minimum guarantee and royalty payments through the platform.
The use of blockchain’s Ethereum technology enables decentralized and safe storage of contracts, licenses and transactions, safe from falsification or alteration.
“We want to make it easier for film professionals to make deals online in a secure manner that does not rely on trust, but rather on the elegant verification process of the blockchain,” said Jordan Mattos, co-founder and director of content. “It is a potentially democratizing tool for young filmmakers and industry players of tomorrow who may not be in a position to budget in attendance at all the yearly markets.”
Initial selections include American artist Chris Gude’s experimental road movie “Mambo Cool,” shot in the hills of Colombia; “The Future Perfect,” which won the Locarno Opera Prima award; and post-apocalyptic Brazilian sci-fi fable, “Blue Desert.”
Cinemarket is one of several companies currently launching business-to-business rights trading ventures, some 20 years after similar initiatives in the 1999-2000 dotcom boom. Those largely failed due to under-developed technology, poor Internet bandwidth, and user skepticism. Today, handheld devices, near ubiquitous mobile broadband, and secure systems have removed most of the technological obstacles. That leaves new platforms to compete for business with each other and with traditional offline marts, such as the Cannes Film Festival’s Cannes Film Market.
Last week Singapore-based startup, AllRites Marketplace launched its online platform with a claimed 17,000 hours of mainly Asian TV, sports and film content. It has ambitions to expand to world scale. Another contender, U.K.-based TRX is also already operational. It is currently offering a range of content from major rights owners including Lionsgate.
Cinemarket will be demonstrating its platform at a booth in the Cannes Film Market, part of the Cannes Film Festival.