Steps For Your Independent Film Distribution Strategy Plan

Film Festivals

Film festivals remain the primary distribution channel for filmmakers. These were traditionally the only way that independent films could be seen by the general public. A winning film at major film festivals (Cannes Sundance Toronto, Venice, Berlin Sundance Sundance Toronto, Venice) could lead to a distribution agreement with a well-known production house. Film festivals are attended by distributors so it is a good idea to have your film shown at major or mid-level festivals. MovieTransit was developed to offer the top service for major film distribution as well independent distributors, offering an innovative and powerful feature set to maximise your release. Choose the most reliable DCP delivery platform today to enhance your content delivery!

Some films won’t be selected for major film festivals. However, it is still beneficial to have your film displayed at local or specialised festivals. Film festivals allow you to see your film in action before a live audience. You also have the chance to meet other filmmakers.

Distribution Companies

You can contact distributors even if your film is not distributed at a festival. You can simply search IMBD to find distributors who have previously worked with films similar to yours. You can politely email them asking if they are interested in your film, perhaps with a trailer or synopsis. You can link to Vimeo and create a password-protected video link if they respond.

Self Distribution

You can always self-distribute if the first two options fail. To make this profitable, you will need to create a solid strategy. Independent film screenings at cinemas can be very costly. You won’t have a distributor so you will need to pay for trailer, film rating and marketing posters.

You might be able to sell DVDs depending on the film. I made a documentary five year ago and sold several hundred in shops. Self-distribution is dependent on solid marketing plans. Find out your ideal audience and target them directly via the platforms where they watch films.

Streaming platforms

Two of the most popular streaming services are Amazon Prime and Netflix. It will be difficult to reach major streaming companies directly. You can contact major streaming companies directly by using a third-party film aggregator. Film Hub is one such service. You send your film to them and they will send it to all the streaming platforms to see if anyone is interested.


Self streaming is an option if you are having trouble with streaming services. These services can be profitable if you charge a fee to view your film on iTunes. Self streaming must be profitable. This is because people will pay to see your film in comparison to other free online videos.

I’ve seen YouTubers like Emily Diane Ruth, who sold her short film “The Water’s Fine” via Gumroad. To build an audience online, she created behind-the scenes videos while producing the film. If you want to make money from self-streaming, it is important to build an audience online via YouTube, blogging and social media.