Vimeo is going on-demand, and it has a surprising ally in its corner.
Don Hertzfeldt's It's Such a Beautiful Day, the acclaimed animator's first feature-length release, is everything that is special and exclusive to the world of independent cinema: an unadulterated connection between an artist and his audience that transcends and redefines the parameters of moviemaking by attempting to express something entirely new.
Following the explosive success of his 2000 short film, "Rejected," Hertzfeldt has spent much of his career turning down financially attractive commercial offers in favor of continuing to create this sort of art. Over the years, he's built a reputation as a pioneer of self-distribution, releasing all of his work through his own production company, Bitter Films.
So it's safe to say that, when Vimeo CEO Kerry Trainor unveiled the new Vimeo On-Demand platform after It's Such a Beautiful Day's screening at SXSW, with Hertzfeldt himself announcing his film's availability through the service, it instantly went from being unheard of to having an astronomical amount of street cred.
The service, which is now available for Vimeo Pro members, allows users to customize which regions their videos are available to, the amount of time a purchase allows them to stream for, whether purchasers will have the option to download the videos, and how much to charge.
Hertzfeldt has set It's Such a Beautiful Day at $6, explaining that he wants everybody, especially the poor college students that have supported his work since the beginning, to be able to afford it.
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