Third Contact Strikes A Blow for Independent British Cinema

(from August 2013)

Having run a long, hard Kickstarter appeal, Director Simon Horrocks and his team achieved their goal in the final hour of their 56-day campaign to support the theatrical distribution of their self-funded film, Third Contact.

As the minutes ticked away, and the Kickstarter clock approached zero, the last of the project’s 435 backers pledged their support, taking the fund over its goal of £15,000 to a grand total of £15,486.

Third Contact tells the tale of depressed psychotherapist, Dr David Wright (Tim Scott-Walker), who embarks on an obsessive investigation after a second patient takes their own life in mysterious circumstances. He sets out to uncover who, or what, is behind their deaths before any more lives are lost. The production was entirely self-funded by Simon Horrocks, who wrote, directed, produced, edited and co-scored the film, with the help of his friends.

Having shown the film to great critical acclaim at the prestigious Internationale Hofer Filmtage Festival in Germany, Director Horrocks began working on getting the film into UK cinemas.

“We’ve shown Third Contact to independent cinemas in London – they like the film and want to show it, however, we need funds ready to pay for film promotion.”

Making the film over four years, on his own budget of just £4,000, Horrocks faced the problem of distributing a movie without studio backing or involvement. The reality of the industry today is that the odds are stacked entirely against real independent film. Cinemas need guaranteed ticket sales, and this is why our picturehouses are filled with ‘safe’ studio sequels and superheroes.

Funds raised by the Third Contact Kickstarter appeal will be spent on a professional press campaign, including press screenings, press releases, talent pitching , printing and distribution of promotional materials and the manufacture and delivery of the Digital Camera Package for Projection (DCP). With this undertaken, Third Contact will find its way, initially, into selected independent cinemas. Wider distribution is also planned.

Following their success on Kickstarter, Horrocks and his team are now planning their UK premiere as a global event, with a live stream of the screening being made available to backers unable to attend in person, and a live Twitter feed on the big screen both before and after the screening. The filmmaker will also conduct a Q & A as part of the event.

Harnessing the power of the digital age, the team behind Third Contact are achieving an astonishing feat – taking a film shot entirely on a household camcorder, and bringing it directly to its audience, on the big screen, via a crowd-funded promotional campaign. This is refreshing in its audacity, and historic for all those that value original thought and truly independent cinema.

Watch the trailer for Third Contact:

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