StoryScout 2024

Documentary Business

Peter Hamilton Consultants, Inc

Ira Deutchman: A legendary distributor on the changing economics of theatrical campaigns in the Streaming Era. Podcast

Ira Deutchman has been honored by the industry for his work since 1975 at the cutting edge of theatrical distribution for indie films.

He is currently an independent producer, marketing consultant and professor at Columbia University. His documentary feature, “Searching for Mr. Rugoff” premiered at the 2019 DOC NYC festival.

We discuss how the economics of documentary distribution have changed — and yet remained much the same — since 1982, when we first worked together on the Sundance-funded “Off-Hollywood” study.

Ira explores:

  • The cost of a campaign in independent art house cinemas
  • Why a New York premiere is so important
  • The impact on release strategies of Netflix and the streamers
  • Self-distribution options
  • His optimism for an art house revival, and much more.

Podcast: Listen to Ira Deutchman (30 mins).


  • Read more about Ira at
  • Thanks to writer / industry analyst David Rosen for bringing me on board the ground-breaking Sundance Case Study project that was published in the ‘Eighties as Off-Hollywood: The Making & Marketing of Independent Films (Grove Press), and that was actively supported by Ira.

Theatrical Distribution Roadmap: Bringing Transparency

Don’t miss my unique studies that track documentary projects from concept through development to Distribution.

  • 12 Case Studies bring transparency to a cloudy industry
  • 70+ pages of detailed research and findings
  • Compelling Takeaways to help you succeed now
  • Numerous links to trailers, websites, Kickstarter campaigns, and additional resources
  • And much more!
  • $19:95
  • Read more / Buy and Download Now!