The movie wasn’t impressive in its theatrical opening, but the producers say that isn’t important. The new business model is all about the digital release.
Chris Colfer couldn’t be any hotter in the pop culture sphere. His Glee character Kurt Hummel is one of the most popular on Fox’s hit series, and in the past year he has been an Emmy, SAG and Golden Globe nominee. Last week he was named favorite male TV comedy star at the People’s Choice Awards.
Despite that, the movie he wrote, produced and stars in — Struck by Lightning — grossed only $2,157 per screen when it premiered in six locations during the past weekend.
For once, however, that is almost irrelevant to the ultimate success of the movie in terms of how much it makes.
That is because a crucial decision was made last year to pass up traditional offers from movie distributors and take Struck by Lightning down the emerging digital path, which treats the release in theaters as little more than another way to promote the video-on-demand and digital distribution on iTunes.
This is the story of how Colfer and the producers decided to go for a digital release at the cost of a traditional Hollywood opening and why they believe it is the future for many movies.
The breakout star of Glee is now ready for his next act. He’s written the screenplay for his new movie—also starring him. The actor talks about the film, his surprising groupies, and all things gay.
Some people learn how to write screenplays by taking a class. Not Chris Colfer. When he was in high school, he kept crouching down at a Borders bookstore in Fresno, Calif., where he religiously read, and re-read, a $40 copy of Marie Antoinette by Sofia Coppola.
“I was a huge history buff,” says Colfer„ 22. “The movie came out right at the time I was studying for my AP European History class.” By obsessing over the screenplay, “that’s how I taught myself to be a screenwriter,” he says. “I never could afford it, because it was $40. So I’d always visit it at the Borders and study the format.”
In addition to acting, Colfer wanted to pursue a writing career. During the first season of Glee, after Kurt turned him into a pop-culture phenomenon, he’d go home and work on his first screenplay. The result isStruck by Lightning, a title that refers to the fate of its central character, Carson (played by Colfer), a high-school geek who blackmails the cool kids at his school into submitting stories for his literary magazine. The movie opens in theaters on Friday.
Colfer spoke to Ramin Setoodeh about the film and all things gay.