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Putting the audience into the movie

07 December 2015

The history of cinema is as much a history of invention as it is a history of storytelling. Originating in vaudeville and transitioning from musicals to talkies to colour, cinema has continually sought to push the envelope. The result is that today we, as a people, are so far advanced we can shoot a feature film with the technology that we carry in our pocket. However, while the accessibility to shoot films increases, the opportunities available to distribute them are conversely shrinking.

This is something that I experienced first hand when in 2013 I released my debut feature film Lad : A Yorkshire Story, a coming of age story about a teenage boy who befriends a park ranger when his dad dies. On the festival circuit it won twenty-one festival prizes whilst at home it drew widespread critical acclaim and reached number five in the iTunes independent charts.  Yet despite this evident audience appeal it proved impossible to secure distribution.

It was this experience that lead to the conception of We Are The Film; a project that invites the audience to become collaborators in a unique sequel where they get to choose the storylines, characters and locations that comprise the story. By harnessing the cumulative imagination of hundreds, I hope to redefine the relationship between the filmmaker and the audience, whilst also sending a clear message to distributors that if they don’t respond to the new paradigm soon, they might find they have no audience left to serve at all.

To get involved in We Are The Film see the Kickstarter at: or follow Dan Hartley on @RogueRunnerFilm with #WeAreTheFilm.

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