Paramount Launching Micro-Budget Division Insurge Pictures

March 11, 2010
Source: indieWIRE

Insurge Pictures

Apparently the success of Paranormal Activity had a bigger impact on Paramount than we initially thought. The studio is launching a new division called Insurge Pictures that will be specifically focused on "micro-budget" movies (news on indieWIRE). The division has been given $1 million in funds to spread across 10 movies with $100,000 budgets each. This fresh new idea is said to be the creation of Amy Powell, the SVP of Interactive Marketing at Paramount. They're also trying to build a community via the official website, which hasn't yet launched. "We want to try something different and deconstruct the Hollywood system." Read on!

Insurge Pictures won't be looking for films from film festivals, but rather looking for filmmaking teams to produce their own projects. "They hope the movies will serve as a low budget proving ground for new talent and intend to release the movies theatrically." Part of the distribution process will involve new "grassroots" marketing approaches like the Demand It campaign for Paranormal, which I'm not sure will succeed again unless the movie is actually good enough. Their bio blurb on Twitter says: "We love talking about everyone else's movies, so we decided it would be awesome to create a new distribution label to find and share our own movies with all of you. And here we are - Insurge Pictures, an official division of Paramount Pictures."

Here's another one of their intros from the website: "Do you want to see more movies that don't conform to the Hollywood model? Sweet, us too." Sounds like they really want to break through the Hollywood norms.

This does sound like a very interesting, and potentially very successful, idea and I'm already curious to hear about the projects they have in development (if there are any yet). I'm not sure if the success of Paranormal Activity was based solely on the fact that its budget was low and it was marketed in a grassroots way. What I guess I'm trying to say is that I'm not sure that same formula will work for every movie, every time. Some of these may be hits, other may be duds, and I'm wondering how many of each there will be. Insurge Pictures is barely on the verge of launching, so we're not entirely sure when we can expect to see any movies from them.

Their website hasn't opened to the public just yet, but indieWIRE says launch is imminent, so expect to hear more and see a full press release from Paramount pretty soon. Do you think Insurge will be a success?

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If you get every videorental place across the US to take in 1-one-copy of your film, you have made $1million. Go interview Larry Kaufman on this "idea" some noob at Paramount "came up with" and hear him laugh. Paramount is only widening their grasp, grabbing a "new" market. Or so they think...

David Banner on Mar 11, 2010


This could be a good thing for a lot of small guys who have great ideas, skills and very little money to make their movie. This would be a win-win for everyone involved.

Louis Porter Jr. on Mar 11, 2010


The Irish film 'Once' that did so well a couple of years ago was shot for €100,000. There are talented filmmakers out there with the ability, talent and ingenuity to create great movies on a shoestring. Have a platform and a gateway to an audience like this will only empower Independent filmmakers. I think it's a great thing. I look forward to seeing what films they make... hopefully one of them will be mine!!!

Frank Kelly on Mar 11, 2010


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sibat on Mar 11, 2010


"Deconstruct the Hollywood system" eh??? So, by investing the smallest amount possible to make upwards of 5x profit is a new idea in Hollywood? Fuck that boastful, glossed-over executive horseshit. Sure, great, MAYBE a few new directors with vision will surface, but the ultimate play in their playbook is to make money and that is NOT a new concept in Hollywood. Not impressed. Big studios getting further into the indie scene is a bad, bad thing and totally destroys the concept of independent cinema. Me no like. Bad medicine.

Voice of Reason on Mar 11, 2010


as long as they are not just movies filmed with digital8 home video quality cameras. it could be a good thing

sickdoghats on Mar 11, 2010


i have to go against voice of reason here because i AM excited for this but i hope that they dont turn every movie into boring comedies, horrors or indies. make a small sci-fi flick or a interesting character underground adventure. Has anyone seen 'the core' because that was pretty low budget but it was absolutely awesome because the characters were really interesting and the adventure was brilliant. Who agrees???

yumyumfish on Mar 11, 2010


Hollywood will surf on ANY formula.

Big Boss on Mar 11, 2010


I like it. A lot.

Al on Mar 11, 2010


3 questions 1. who are the directors for these projects. can a normal person with an idea email Insurge and they hand over $100,000? 2. what if you already have a movie and would like them to distribute. & 3. every company starting out is always looking for the little peoples best interests, but money always has a way of winning. I hope this really works.

wm on Mar 11, 2010


This is a great idea, why didn't they think of it sooner? Yes there will be hits and misses, but the risk they take on producing one movie is what 100K? Even if all 10 movies fail they can cover the loss with Paramount's big budget, not to mention the publicity they're getting for this. Great idea!

Lincoln on Mar 11, 2010


#3 what is it exactly that you do?

wm on Mar 11, 2010

13 with more money behind it!

edwardrow on Mar 11, 2010


It's a talent initiative on their part. Direct sourcing new talent for bigger stuff. I bet some of the small films get the remake treatment too. Eyes wide-open though...

Betty Swallocks on Mar 14, 2010


This evening I excitedly went to see The Devil Inside, I NEVER go to the movies (due to the cost), and let me just say, how disappointing! I met with a friend after a long day of work and we were both excited to finally have a chance to see each other, get away from life as mothers, and go see this movie! I almost feel like you ruined my night and wasted my money!! Next movie, don't have so much of the "leading up to" the plot, have MORE scary, weird, and freaky scenes! These are the movies that I love, when it has a lot of scary scenes! I'm not a big slasher/ dumb blonde running through the woods movie lover, I love the stuff you are trying to accomplish but please next time make it worth my while! Yours truly, Dana Smith 1-7-12 on Jan 7, 2012

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