If Ed Skudder and Zack Keller’s Dick Figures – The Movie is any indication, the animated feature revolution will not only be televised, it will be fan-funded and delivered directly to its audience through an innovative multi-tiered distribution strategy.
On = September 17, the entire film will be available for purchase or rental in a variety of digital platforms, including Google Play. However, the 73-minute movie adaptation of the popular webseries Dick Figures will have a day-and-date episodic release. It will be made available free of charge on YouTube, distributed in twelve weekly ad-supported installments.
“We want to give people the option to download or stream the movie from wherever they’re comfortable, from wherever they have accounts, from wherever it’s easiest for them to get access to the movie,” co-creator Keller told Mashable. “We operate in online space, so we wanted to keep it in an online space. People don’t even have to leave their couches or their desks or wherever they are.”
Since its premiere in 2010, Dick Figures, which follows the comic experiences of two juvenile young adult stick figures, Red and Blue, has racked up 43 short episodes and over 350 million views on YouTube, making it one of the most popular animated webseries to date. Creators Skudder and Keller raised over $300,000 in crowdfunding for the feature project on Kickstarter last year. (Most of the Kickstarter backers will be able to download the film at no cost.)
Tailoring the film’s release primarily with its core audience in mind, distributor Mondo Media and production company Six Point Harness partnered with digital platform manager Cinedigm, (who will also release the film to DVD in December) and Yekra, a VOD provider that enables viewers to stream and download content through blogs and social media sites.