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Jason Blum Predicts Windows Collapse for ‘Most Movies’

Variety logo Variety 2/14/2017 Andrew Wallenstein
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Veteran movie producer Jason Blum sees big changes ahead in film distribution.

“I think there are some movies that will stay in the traditional movies and most movies where the windowing will collapse,” he told the crowd Monday at the Code Media conference in Laguna Niguel, Calif., specifying a 12-18 month time frame.

Blum, who specializes in producing low-budget films with a knack for scoring on the upside, believes fillmmakers who are hung up on seeing their work on the big screen are missing the big picture.

“We are so beyond the time of telling kids where they need to see what,” he said. “You are killing your own business.”

Blum thinks the younger demos that flock to his movies should have a theatrical option that continues.

“We should have that as an option for them but I would be just as happy if we had an option at home too. As long as the economics are the same and we can make differnet kind of things.”

Blum said Netflix and Amazon are making distribution more efficient, opening up a previously attenuated market for serious-minded fare targeted at adults.

“Five years ago, if you tried to make ‘Manchester By the Sea,’ it’s not getting made,” he said, referencing the Oscar-nominated Amazon acquisition. “The theatrical drama or the feature length drama was almost gone and now it’s just come back in force because there is a real market for adult dramas and the traditional movie distribution wasn’t reaching that.”

Blum closed with an amusing story about missing out on an opportunity to produce “La La Land” after previously collaborating with its director, Damien Chazelle, on his breakthrough film “Whiplash.”

“I threw every bone in my body and brain cell in my mind going after that movie in every possible way I could and I lost, and it kills me,” he said. “I actually going to New York for the Oscars because I can’t take it!”

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