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ATX Television Fest: The Devoted Niche vs. the Casual Mass
Examining an audience's value
DAILY Screens  June 8, 2015, by Rod Machen
"...As the quality and quantity of television grows, the ways for a show to succeed has also increased. On Saturday, the ATX Television Festival hosted a panel to debate the merits of the devoted niche vs..."

Niche Streaming Sites for the Holidays
Give the gift of worlds of entertainment just a click away
Screens Story  November 17, 2016, by Josh Kupecki, Richard Whittaker, Sean L. Malin, Spencer Beghtol and Ashley Moreno
"...While Netflix and Hulu may be reigning supreme as far as internet bandwidth goes, there is a wide array of niche streaming sites that cater to people who are perhaps looking for something outside the realm of Adam Sandler films and episodes of Chopped. The Chronicle Screens team has curated some offerings to take care of some people on your holiday list..."

Eyeing the Niche
Local filmmakers head to Sundance with "The Send-Off"
Screens Story  February 4, 2016, by Sean L. Malin
"...Like Murrow and Morris before them, both filmmakers find themselves deeply interested in niche communities around the country, and both have an incredible eye for such spaces. Williams and Duffy were among the first to notice, but hardly the last – at Sundance, Bresnan and Lucas attended a filmmaker's luncheon with Werner Herzog they described as "a most amazing encounter." Herzog spoke with them one-on-one for an hour, ignoring hangers-on..."

A Niche of One's Own
Capitol Times Casts Wide Net in Covering News
News Column  June 12, 1998, by Lee Nichols
"...We don't want to create the news, we want to cover it." Other members of Austin's black publishing community declined to comment on their new competitor and/or didn't know anything about Walker and Hernandez. But reading the Times quickly reveals that they are not simply trying to squeeze one more paper into a niche that is already filled...."

Whistle Has a Niche Market Cornered
Corner store offers local, sustainable grocery choices on Eastside
Food Story  December 7, 2012, by Jessi Cape

Niche Justice
Travis County specialty courts try to break the cycle of crime
News Story  March 26, 2010, by Jordan Smith

Working-Class Hero
Is Michael Fracasso's Austin's best kept musical secret?
Music Story  April 23, 2004, by Dave Marsh
"...Now we're on the trail of the mystery of Fracasso's missing audience. The music world has become the land of niche marketing..."

Can You Ever Forgive Me?
True life forgery black comedy rings surprisingly true
Film Review  November 2, 2018, by Steve Davis
"...With her style of books no longer fashionable (a recent Estée Lauder bio has flopped badly), she’s behind in her rent, can’t pay her vet bill, and only has money to spend on a serious drinking habit. By chance, she finds two typewritten notes signed by vaudevillian Fanny Brice in a library book, and discovers there’s a niche market for the letters of deceased authors and showbiz notables..."

Skate Kitchen
Hybrid narrative/doc gets to the heart of NYC skater life
Film Review  August 17, 2018, by Marc Savlov
"...After a gnarly accident involving her deck and her crotch gets the introverted 18-year-old skate rat Camille (the excellent Vinberg) banned from skating by her overprotective single mother (Rodriguez), she clandestinely hooks up with the Skate Kitchen posse and discovers the joys (and pains) of female solidarity in a sport long dominated by misogynistic Thrasher bros. That’s about the extent of the borderline generic coming-of-age plot, but exploring the niche subculture of this interracial, pansexual band of outsiders in all its mundane detail makes for a surprisingly sweet film...."

Grace Unplugged
A talented Christian teen must choose between her faith and superstardom.
Film Review  October 11, 2013, by Louis Black
"...In this niche-targeted film, Grace (Michalka) is in a successful Christian music group with Johnny Trey, her father (Denton). She has a beautiful, powerful voice, and also plays guitar and piano..."

Until the Light Takes Us
This music documentary chronicles the history, ideology, and aesthetic of Norwegian black metal.
Film Review  November 20, 2009, by Raoul Hernandez
"...Kiss’ face paint is now black metal’s corpse paint, and even if album sales aren’t analogous, the latter’s stranglehold on youthful (and hoary) headbangers amplifies no less loudly. Until the Light Takes Us matches its subject, equally inscrutable though no less niche-oriented..."

Forgetting Sarah Marshall
Freaks and Geeks alum Jason Segel stars in this new sex comedy from the Judd Apatow production factory.
Film Review  April 18, 2008, by Marc Savlov
"...(It also, at times, borders on the non sequitur.) Apatow has, in the past few years, become a cottage industry unto himself, a postmillennial John Hughes, but with little (so far) of the increasingly strident precocity that Hughes evinced as his career devolved from the great (The Breakfast Club) to the banal and beyond (Baby's Day Out, the Home Alone films). Forgetting Sarah Marshall, despite its instantly forgettable title, is the perfect vehicle for Segel, who thus far hasn't really found a comic niche to call his own..."

Boynton Beach Club
Although this movie about residents of an “active adult” retirement community in Florida has a certain niche-market appeal, it’s really a movie for anyone who enjoys a solid romantic comedy.
Film Review  November 10, 2006, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...This hopeful and buoyant film about residents of an “active adult” retirement community in Florida finding new love does not initially seem like the film one might expect from the tapped-into-the-zeitgeist director of Desperately Seeking Susan, Smithereens, and the pilot episode of Sex and the City. Yes, the film has a certain niche-market appeal, but it’s a movie for anyone who enjoys a solid romantic comedy..."

Kinky Boots
One man's ailing boot factory and a transvestite's need for extra-large thigh-highs become a perfect match in this British comedy about tolerance.
Film Review  May 19, 2006, by Marc Savlov
"...While scads of this English industrial town's residents depend on the company for their livelihood, it's equally clear that globalization has knocked them clear out of the running. Prodded by felicitous tomboy (and soon-to-be love interest) Lauren (Wonderland's Potts), Charlie discovers a bountiful niche market when he teams up with black transvestite Lola (Ejiofor), whose cross-dressing London cabaret is desperately in need of the titular, saucy footwear that's difficult to fine in a size 12EEE..."

Phat Girlz
Comedian Mo’Nique’s first starring film vehicle, Phat Girlz, suffers from a bad case of undernourishment.
Film Review  April 14, 2006, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Comedian Mo’Nique’s first starring film vehicle, Phat Girlz, suffers from a bad case of undernourishment. Not that the movie doesn’t serve up heaping amounts of fat jokes, or that it doesn’t deliver targeted gags for an underserved niche audience – fat women..."

Grandma's Boy
What's funnier than having to move back in with your parents? Why, moving in with your grandparents, of course.
Film Review  January 13, 2006, by Marc Savlov
"...Frankly, I can think of no higher praise. The rest of the film, involving a barrage of hit-or-miss gags running the gamut from “old gals mistaking pot for tea and getting stoned” (hit) to “oddball African Bushman showing up with lion” (miss) and self-obsessed Matrix wannabe doing the robot (hit, then many, many misses), is trashy, niche-marketed fun..."

Doom is not so much a film as a marketing tie-in, albeit one with some exceptional production values.
Film Review  October 21, 2005, by Marc Savlov
"...Admittedly, it’s fun to see the Rock going all gushy-eyed over a piece of weapons hardware (the formidable BFG; you can probably figure out the acronym on your own), and Doom also scores highly with its nonstop cavalcade of creepy critters (hellspawn or not), including one downright vile imp that looks like an albino manatee crossed with an In-Sink-Erator. (Finally, I know what my dog’s going to dress up as on Halloween night.) There’s no character development to speak of because there are no real characters, just the living and the dead and the soon-to-be-dead (or undead), and in the end Doom is so niche-marketed to gamers that it might as well not be considered a film at all: It’s a marketing tie-in, albeit one with some exceptional production values..."

Lords of Dogtown
This narrative re-creation of the skateboarding doc Dogtown and Z-Boys is a blast, as accurate as it ought to be with more than enough mythology and gut thrills thrown in for good measure.
Film Review  June 10, 2005, by Marc Savlov
"...That said, this narrative re-creation of Peralta’s doc, from his own script and directed by Thirteen’s Catherine Hardwicke, is a blast, as accurate as it ought to be with more than enough mythology thrown in for good measure. It’s the story of a ragamuffin group of friends – Stacy Peralta (Robinson); Tony Alva (Rasuk); Jay Adams (Hirsch); Sid (Angarano); and their Fagan, Zephyr Surfboards owner Skip Engblom (Ledger) – who saw a niche one drought-ridden SoCal summer and filled it with urethane wheels and scrawny little plastic skateboard decks..."

Tokyo Godfathers
A homeless drag queen adopts an orphan in what is, but for some violence and harsh language, old-fashioned, big-hearted entertainment in high animé style.
Film Review  January 23, 2004, by Marrit Ingman
"...This ain’t your little brother’s animé. Well, it could be, potentially: But for a few violent moments and some harsh language, Tokyo Godfathers is the kind of old-fashioned, all-ages entertainment Hollywood used to churn out in live-action form before the era of niche marketing, when a good story sold a film..."

The Climb
This well-intentioned drama, produced by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, leaves no cliché unturned as it charts the path of a cocky mountain climber (George) en route to his spiritual...
Film Review  February 22, 2002, by Marrit Ingman
"...Davis adds a classy note as the father of Derrick's girlfriend, making the most of his limited screen time, but Santiago (debuting here as the girlfriend) can't do much with her bland “good woman” role, despite an engaging camera presence. Nonetheless, the film probably has enough polish and goodwill to give it niche appeal...."

Fast Food Fast Women
After carving out a little niche with gritty character studies like Fiona and Sue, Israeli-born writer-director Amos Kollek essays a breezy New York romance, with those crisscrossing slice-of-life storylines so...
Film Review  August 17, 2001, by Marrit Ingman
"...Starring: Angelica Torn, Valerie Geffner, Victor Argo, Austin Pendleton, Robert Modica, Louise Lasser, Jamie Harris and Anna Thomson. After carving out a little niche with gritty character studies like Fiona and Sue, Israeli-born writer-director Amos Kollek essays a breezy New York romance, with those crisscrossing slice-of-life storylines so typical of tales of the city..."

Carman: The Champion
Talk about your niche marketing … Christian filmmaking seems to be all the rage these days -- or at least it looks that way from deep down here in the...
Film Review  March 9, 2001, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Starring: Romeo Fabian, Jed Allan, Jeremy Williams, Patricia Manterola, Michael Nouri and Carman. Talk about your niche marketing … Christian filmmaking seems to be all the rage these days -- or at least it looks that way from deep down here in the Bible Belt..."

Smiling Fish and Goat On Fire
Did you like The Brothers McMullen, Ed Burns' romantic comedy from 1995 about three brothers living under the same roof and sharing each other's tribulations in love? Smiling Fish and...
Film Review  November 10, 2000, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Like The Brothers McMullen, Smiling Fish and Goat on Fire was made on a minuscule budget and made the rounds as a festival darling prior to its release. Young men searching for both their occupational niche in life and their one true love has long been fertile ground for aspiring filmmakers..."

Dog Park
Kids-in-the-Hall alum McCulloch's directorial debut barrels out of the gate with a promising pedigree only to collapse just shy of funny and this side of engaging. The quirky, but ultimately...
Film Review  October 1, 1999, by Sarah Hepola
"...Despite these flaws, Dog Park has moments both humorous and tender, although hardly enough to recommend it. All those talented Kids in the Hall alums seem to be fighting to find their niche years after their classic comic troupe disbanded, but McCulloch seems to be losing the battle..."

Late Bloomers
I've known so many gay people who are reduced to honking, snuffling emotional wreckage by the most saccharine hetero romance films that one has to wonder: Why are same-sex love...
Film Review  June 27, 1997, by Russell Smith
"...Starring: Connie Nelson and Dee Hennigan. I've known so many gay people who are reduced to honking, snuffling emotional wreckage by the most saccharine hetero romance films that one has to wonder: Why are same-sex love stories viewed as exotic or inaccessible by most straight viewers? Julia Dyer's slyly engaging low-budget film about love between two unglamorous, fortyish women strains mightily against this arbitrary niche-market stigma with an appealing blend of charm, humor, and subversive appropriation of classic romance-movie imagery..."

Selena Quintanilla Pérez, the barrier-crashing Tejano singer who was murdered at the age of 23, is the subject of this biopic that was also the breakout film role for Jennifer Lopez.
Film Review  March 28, 1997, by Russell Smith
"...Movies get made for all kinds of reasons, many having little or nothing to do with art. Selena, for example, falls into the specialized niche of Validator Films -- movies primarily designed to help audiences re-experience crucial life events (often retrofitted with gauzy mythical trappings), thereby reassuring themselves that everything was truly as vivid and meaningful as they remember..."

The Crow: City of Angels
More often than not, film sequels are inferior things, pale shades of their predecessors, born shrouded in a caul of Tinseltown greed sometimes months before the original film has even...
Film Review  September 6, 1996, by Marc Savlov
"...Whereas Alex Proyas' original Crow took great pains to weave a wholly thematic, wholly nouveau gothique tapestry, one that complemented the film alongside Graeme Revell's lushly tribal score, City of Angels is a scattershot collection of alterna-metal and Top-40 near-misses. It's this kind of rush job, market-niche attitude that nails the film to its chintzy balsa-wood cross..."

Someone Else's America
This realistic yet fanciful story about the immigrant experience in Brooklyn is not quite the usual portrait of America as the great melting pot. Neither is it a story about...
Film Review  July 5, 1996, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Consequently, it's sometimes uneven and jumpy. Yet this multi-national production creates characters and situations that manage to carve a memorable niche in the American geography...."

My Life
Teary melodramas involving the endurance and purity of true love despite the presence of an untimely death often translate into profits at the box office because, let's face it, audiences...
Film Review  November 19, 1993, by Pamela Bruce
"...Teary melodramas involving the endurance and purity of true love despite the presence of an untimely death often translate into profits at the box office because, let's face it, audiences occasionally want a good cry at the movies. And now, screenwriter Rubin (who wrote the script for the tearjerker hit Ghost) seems to be trying to carve a niche for himself as an auteur in this genre of films and gearing them especially for the thirty-to-forty-something set..."

Alan & Naomi
Alan & Naomi is set during World War II in New York. It exhibits the kind of excruciating attention to detail that signals misty nostalgia and an impossibly functional family...
Film Review  April 24, 1992, by Kathleen Maher
"...Sadly, it's not likely there will be much of an audience to applaud these teens' efforts. Alan & Naomi occupies that difficult niche, the classy children's film..."

Straight Out of Brooklyn
Austin Film Society highlights three films distributed by Factory 25
DAILY Screens  January 8, 2013, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...The Brooklyn, NY-based company Factory 25 describes itself as a distributor of "indie niche projects." Further aiming to travel any road but the middle, the distributor states that both high- and low-concept films and music have a home at the label. A new Austin Film Society series spotlights three of the company's films...."

Media Clips
The Internet offers new opportunities for newspapers to expand their coverage, but so far, Texas dailies have yet to heed the call.
News Column  April 21, 2000, by Lee Nichols
"...The Net is radically transforming much of our world, and few industries have been impacted as heavily as journalism. Thus far, the sector of journalism scrambling hardest to find a niche on the Net is the daily paper. That could change soon, of course -- as online video and audio technologies improve, which they are doing rapidly, television and radio will have to move aggressively to capitalize on new opportunities presented by the Internet..."

The Shot Heard 'Round the Dial
Austin' "Alternative" Radio Market
Music Story  September 8, 1995
"..."We thought there was a niche," says Sara Trexler, 101X (KROX-FM) program director, before correcting herself. "Not a niche, but there was a hole in the market in terms of having alternative music that was not mixed with either classic rock or heavy, heavy urban dance kind of stuff, and was specifically for this sort of generation format...."

Keep On Shoppin'
Wheatsville Calls on Old Friends to Stay Afloat
News Story  November 8, 1996, by Amy Smith
"...Central Market's demographic profile is a retailer's dream: The shoppers fit nicely into the disposable income market niche, giving rise to rumors that the prototype store pulls in about $1 million per week in sales. The store generally appeals to higher-end shoppers -- many of them ex-hippie baby boomers who once fit the profile of the Wheatsville customer..."

Everything Must Go
Tower's last hours
Music Story  June 25, 2004, by Matt Dentler
"...Eat the Niche "Doing what we're doing is a little more complicated than it appears on the surface," maintains Jason Enright, former co-owner of Jupiter Records. What Jason's doing, with his brother Ryan, is opening a music store for local music downloads (iTunes for Austin, so to speak) called "Jupiter Brothers."..."

The Way We Watch Now: Case Studies
Five experiments in theatrical-on-demand
Screens Story  June 22, 2012, by Richard Whittaker
"..."That's the moment when Tugg clicked for me," Kelley notes. He'd caught the video gaming documentary at the 2011 Austin Film Festival, and while he knew it would have a wide audience, it was still niche enough that it would be a tough sell..."

The Post Man Always Saves Twice
Screens Story  July 11, 1997, by Andy Langer
"...Until the advent of Deja News, there had been neither a vehicle for archiving or searching these Usenet posts because the process of storing that much information took up far too much disk space. By creating the proprietary software to operate, maintain, and search a database as large as Usenet, Deja News founder Steve Madere has not only discovered an uncharted Internet niche but has created and seemingly held on to Deja News' self-appointed title as "The Source For Internet Newsgroups."..."

Anime Beyond Miyazaki Arrives in Austin
Films like I Want to Eat Your Pancreas are changing American tastes for Japanese animation
Screens Story  February 7, 2019, by Richard Whittaker
"...The massive success of Broly caught everyone off-guard (I had several conversations with film journalists and even theatre managers who were baffled why theatres were adding screens in the second week). It's really an example of a major disruption to distribution, a model spearheaded by Fathom Events, the niche distributor which has specialized in two-night nationwide engagements..."

A Market of Multitudes
Selling less of more is the new music industry economic paradigm
Music Story  February 1, 2008, by Doug Freeman
"...As Anderson explains, "That mass of niches has always existed, but as the cost of reaching it falls – consumers finding niche products and niche products finding consumers – it's suddenly becoming a cultural and economic force to be reckoned with."..."

Grave Matters
The Cost of the Longest Vacation You'll Ever Take
News Story  March 28, 1997, by Karl Pallmeyer
"...Some choose to have their urn buried or kept in a niche in a mausoleum. Yaklin says that at the City of Austin cemeteries there are small burial spaces -- which also double as graves for children -- where cremation remains, or "cremains," can be interred..."

The "Yuppie Chow" Market
Austin's Grocery Stores Duke It Out
News Story  July 28, 1995, by Amy Smith
"...The message hasn't been missed by other grocery outlets: Sun Harvest Farms rejuvenated itself with a move to the former Whole Foods store in South Austin's Brodie Oaks and expanded its Anderson Lane store. Fiesta Market, a conventional supermarket with heavy emphasis on fresh foods, is keeping the status quo with its ethnic and blue-collar market niche..."

Pop Culture That's a Keeper
Browsing the collectibles at Guzu Gallery
Screens Story  May 18, 2012, by Marc Savlov
"...Which makes Guzu something of a missing link between the late, lamented Austin toy/movie/punk-rock art stores Jim "Prince" Hughes' Atomic City and John Lohse's Gomi (the latter still exists online here: when it comes to niche art that's no longer as nichey but, strangely, ever more Nietzschean – Star Wars Stormtrooper Super Shogun looming over the cash register...."

Fantastic Fest: 'Machete Maidens Unleashed!'
Q&A with documentarian Mark Hartley
DAILY Screens  September 23, 2010, by Marc Savlov
"...Austin Chronicle: This is your second genre-based documentary in as many years. Had you planned on being the go-to guy for niche genre-film docs?..."

Have You Ever Been to Carrascolendas?
The Bilingual Education Act in 1968 sparked an unprecedented number of bilingual television programs for children, and the Austin-produced children's series Carrascolendas, which premiered in 1970, was among the first.
Screens Story  July 4, 2003, by Belinda Acosta
"..."A decade ago, bilingualism on TV was nonexistent. [Today, it] has clearly found a niche on TV," declared TV Guide critic Sally Bedell in her 1977 article on bilingual children's programming, "A Generation Without Cultural Hang-Ups." If a reading between the lines of Bedell's article is accurate, there's a mild exasperation in her tone when she continues: "sometimes as much as 10 minutes of Spanish appear in some Sesame Street episodes."..."

Dancing About Architecture
Antone's Anniversary off to a bumpy start, and the same goes for local CD outlets.
Music Column  July 13, 2001, by Ken Lieck
"...Finding a Niche and Scratching It..."

Coach's Corner
In his "View From the Couch," the Coach takes on a variety of pressing subjects, from the demise of the Detroit Red Wings and Pat Riley, to the sad state of women's golf.
Columns  May 4, 2001, by Andy "Coach" Cotton
"...TV golf has always been a niche sport, appealing to a few wealthy pensioners in Scottsdale. Tiger changed this, but Tiger's a fluke..."

Throwing Down Love
The seven-year rise of Knolly Williams, the Master P of Christian hip-hop
Music Story  August 4, 2000, by Andy Langer
"...All three sets of Austinites create, cover, and market to a niche audience while carefully riding the line between not just art and commerce, but art, commerce, and faith. And while their scene may not be yours, it's hard to deny that it's interesting -- after all, there's three stories here, and not one of them uses the phrase "after their major-label deal imploded." At first glance, Grapetree Records' full-page ad in Billboard's Dec..."

None of the Hits, All of the Time
Austin's Real "Alternative," KVRX
Music Story  January 24, 1997, by Kate X Messer
"...Carole Chandler, one of KVRX's fundraising directors, sees the student station's potential for filling a niche in Austin's radio market left by the commercial station shake-up. "So-called alternative music has been so mainstreamed..."

Chain Reaction
In Book Wars, Independent Shops Become Casualties
News Story  November 29, 1996, by Karl Pallmeyer
"..."The main way to survive, apparently, as an independent is to be a niche store," says James Rost, assistant manager of Congress Avenue Booksellers. "This is a general bookstore, that's about the worst way to go when you're out there and have to compete with Barnes & Noble. That makes it super tough..."

Christopher Robin
Back to the Hundred Acre Wood in this live-action sequel
Film Review  August 10, 2018, by Richard Whittaker
"...But where that first film followed the real boy who was the inspiration for A.A. Milne's childhood classics, this is the Christopher Robin of the book (McGregor), all grown up in post-World War II Britain, with a wife (Agent Carter's Atwell, seemingly born to wear tweed) and daughter (Carmichael, hewing out her own midcentury niche after small parts in Darkest Hour and On Chesil Beach)..."

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