Welcome to Propellor

With the rise of new screens, emerging technologies and changing viewing habits among audiences, it’s becoming increasingly clear that the film industry isn’t what it used to be. While some aspects of the industry have evolved, other vital parts of the value chain have stagnated. The Internet era has left the cinema landscape in a state of transition that requires a seismic shift in business models.

The film industry urgently needs spaces where people can think within a ‘safe zone’ about new distribution and business models as well as how the industry can shape its own future.
— Matthijs wouter knol (Director EFM)

The systems being used now are ripe for disruption and there’s never been a better time to reinvent the way films are produced, distributed and experienced.

Enter Propellor

Propellor is a one-of-a-kind film tech hub aiming to propel the film industry into the future. Powered by the International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR),  European Film MarketCopenhagen International Documentary Festival (CPH:DOX) and Cinemathon, Propellor offers a space for the next wave of film and tech entrepreneurs to come together, experiment and develop new distribution and business models for film. 

It’s the first time a program that transcends countries and disciplines has been set up to foster business innovation and challenge how the film business works. 

There are many opportunities in the film industry to develop content, but Propellor is the only one dedicated to the development of new business models for the production, distribution and experience of films.
— Erwin Schmidt (co-founder of Cinemathon)

By joining forces, the four players are sending a signal out into the world that the film sector is ready to embrace new perspectives when it comes to distribution and business models – two key areas that haven’t hit the apex of what it’s capable of, according to a recent study by the European Parliament

A distinctive approach

Propellor connects the movers and shakers of the film industry with the leaders and innovators of the startup community and beyond so they can exchange, collaborate and launch cutting-edge projects. 

For emerging and seasoned film professionals, the Propellor Film Tech Hub offers a dynamic space to take risks and explore collaborations with the tech community and to push the boundaries of the industry. 
For budding startups and leading entrepreneurs interested in venturing into world of film, Propellor provides direct access to a strong network in the intl. film industry, a space to experiment with new business concepts and acts as a stepping stone to tap into the growing film market. This market is projected to reach $50 billion in global box revenue in 2020. 

Each of the founding organizations is going to be around the innovation hub so that participants can use the festivals and markets as a testbed for their innovations.
— Tine Fischer (Founder and director of cph:dox)

Looking ahead

In its current form, Propellor will host a series of nomadic ideation workshops, bootcamps and networking events that merge startup thinking and methodologies with film industry expertise. Ultimately, the goal is to establish an incubator dedicated to the development of new technology applications and innovative business models. 

The film industry needs a whole new dynamic, but for this to happen you need to get some initial movement. And this movement is called Propellor.
— Bero Beyer (Festival Director of IFFR)

The approach is new and the path may not be easy, but it’s an exciting time for both the film and tech industries to foster meaningful partnerships and fix what’s not working any longer. 

Born from the desire to re-imagine the ways in which the film and tech worlds can engage with one another, Propellor is a prime example of how small conversations can turn into to big ideas. What began as separate exchanges among an innovation studio co-founder, film festival directors and a film market director led to the launch of a unique platform to kickstart cross-disciplinary collaborations. In an industry that is used to working in silos, the mission is to carve out a breeding ground for the next generation of film and tech entrepreneurs to come together, try out new things and develop new business models  that will send ripples into the future. After all, the most innovative ideas come from combining information and insights from different disciplines, in an interesting and new way.

If it’s one thing we’re certain of, it’s that the film industry is on the cusp of change. Whether it’s  innovative funding platforms, new ways to attract audiences or personalized viewing experiences, the future of film is still a vast and uncharted territory. Let’s not sit around and wait for others to decide what will happen in these realms. Let’s come together, test the waters and propel the film industry into the future. Together.

Please join us.