Rick Santorum, a former U.S. senator and 2012 GOP presidential candidate, has a plan that he believes could revolutionize the way faith-based feature films are distributed.
Through the new EchoLight Cinemas platform, Santorum said that films will now be directly released through ticketed events at churches across America rather than at traditional movie theaters.
“These are actually ticketed events. They’re theatrical releases in the church,” he said. “We’re changing the premiere of our films from a theatrical release to a [church] film release.”
Houses of worship are invited to sign up on the EchoLight Cinemas website, where faith leaders will be authorized to show films at church locations during a two-month window. Churches aren’t charged up front to show the films, though they pay EchoLight $5 for each ticket sold.
This dynamic gives pastors a number of options: they can sell tickets above that mark to make a profit, simply break even with $5 ticket sales — or, if they can afford to, buy out seats to offer free movie nights to their communities.
“There’s no risk to the church. We’re going to bring out a movie once every quarter,” Santorum said, noting that there’s no limit on the number of times movies can be shown within the designated premiere windows. “Our core market, our core demographic are folks who are Christians. What better place to premiere our movies than at the church?”
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