George Lucas buys into the Long Tail

Chewbacca and Jabba will no longer be banking on blockbusters.

"Lucas said he believes Americans are abandoning the moviegoing habit for good."

From the Long Tail Blog:
    From the current issue of Variety:

"George Lucas has a message for studios that are cutting their slates and shifting toward big-budget tentpoles and franchises: You've got it all wrong. The creator of "Star Wars," which stamped the template for the franchise-tentpole film, says many small films and Web distribution are the future.

And in case anyone doubts he means it, Lucasfilm is getting out of the [theatrical-release] movie biz."We don't want to make movies. We're about to get into television. As far as Lucasfilm is concerned, we've moved away from the feature film thing because it's too expensive and it's too risky.

Spending $100 million on production costs and another $100 million on P&A makes no sense, he said. "For that same $200 million, I can make 50-60 two-hour movies. That's 120 hours as opposed to two hours. In the future market, that's where it's going to land, because it's going to be all pay-per-view and downloadable."

 With more than 13000 movies submitted to just the Tribecca Film Festival and only 150 getting real distribution, that's good news for young filmmakers. Distribution will get easier.

But it's terrible news for advertisers. How will you target and deliver a consistant message if you don't have a big channel? It's the same problem that network televison is facing. See Judd Bagleys Connect article and graphs here. 

So where is the paradigm shift? Technology allows more efficient markets and cheap and easy distribution. It is just a better system.