Film distribution

Film distribution is the process of making a movie available for viewing by an audience. This is normally the task of a professional film distributor, who would determine the marketing strategy for the film, the media by which a film is to be exhibited or made available for viewing, and who may set the release date and other matters. The film may be exhibited directly to the public either through a movie theater or television, or personal home viewing (including DVD, video-on-demand, download, television programs through broadcast syndication). For commercial projects, film distribution is usually accompanied by film promotion.

When a film is initially produced, a feature film is often shown to audiences in a movie theater. Typically, one film is the featured presentation (or feature film). Before the 1970s, there were "double features"; typically, a high-quality "A picture" rented by an independent theater for a lump sum, and a lower-quality "B picture" rented for a percentage of the gross receipts. Today, the bulk of the material shown before the feature film consists of previews for upcoming movies (also known as trailers) and paid advertisements.


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