Season of the Witch

Because they missed their opportunity to distribute the original film the first time around, CinemaNow and Trimark Pictures announced last week that they have acquired all rights to several spoofs of The Blair Witch Project, with negotiations already underway to acquire several more. The original Blair Witch film has been put on a fast-track schedule for release on DVD in time for Halloween, including the requisite "Newly Discovered" footage, Internet links, and other special features.

Trimark intends to compile several Blair Witch spoofs—The Blonde Witch Project, The Griffith Witch Project, The Watt's Bitch Project, and The Big Foot Project—in a package for Internet streaming via the company's new Internet subsidiary, CinemaNow, and for distribution via the company's international and home video arms.

The announcement was made by CinemaNow's senior vice president, Bruce Eisen, who repped both companies in the negotiations and will continue to do so in future negotiations. Producer's rep Patrick Lynn corralled the films and negotiated the deal on behalf of the filmmakers. Said Eisen, "This kind of acquisition is new to us and that's what makes it so exciting, especially considering the Internet potential of these films. We also believe that this will provide a wide avenue of opportunity for young filmmakers, and we are actively seeking out other spoofs in the marketplace."

Trimark says that viewers will be able to find the spoofs on the Internet at www.spoofblairwitch.com. Timelines for the Internet streaming, international distribution, and home video distribution have not been disclosed, as the company continues to seek out other spoofs on the marketplace. Trimark hopes the recently announced CinemaNow website will become a successful online destination for the streaming of independent, art-house and niche-oriented feature-length motion pictures. The company plans to launch the website in the fall, and to use the nearly 650-film library of Trimark Pictures as its initial catalog.

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