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Social cinema events platform Kinema launches with $2m funding

Social cinema platform Kinema, which allows event organisers to sell tickets, launched yesterday (Tuesday) after securing $2m in a seed funding round.

The platform allows hosts to organise online events via the Virtual Kinema, which includes live text chat and live video broadcasting allowing viewers to connect in real time with creators, talent and filmmakers. In-person events can also be arranged via Kinema’s cloud-based film delivery application.

Christie Marchese, chief executive and founder at Kinema, said: “At Kinema, we’re enabling cinematic experiences that are impactful, thought-provoking, engaging and – most importantly – everywhere.

“The pandemic taught us that the film-going experience can exist beyond the traditional movie theatre. With Kinema we’re enabling global storytellers to connect with local audiences, and putting the power of curation directly in the hands of community leaders and influencers.”

Kinema has been financially backed by James Murdoch’s Lupa Systems, Kindred Ventures, Galaxy Interactive, 12BF Global Ventures and an individual investment from Wall Street analyst Richard Greenfield of LightShed Partners.

The tech platform, which enables non-theatrical exhibition, claims to expand the film marketing and distribution industry by enabling a social and immersive cinema experience.

The firm said in a statement: “Kinema’s mission is to enable unique cinematic experiences tailored to communities everywhere. Additionally, the team is committed to being a resource to filmmakers and distributors by providing a new way of digital distribution, marketing and monetisation.”

Kinema’s non-theatrical exhibitors, or hosts, include nonprofits, education institutions, faith centres and online influencers. It claims to have already hosted more than 450 screenings for tens of thousands of users.

Steve Jang, founder and managing partner of Kindred Ventures, said: “Historically, filmmakers and their audiences have been separated from each other due to traditional intermediaries and conventional industry dynamics. However, we’ve reached an intersection of streaming technology and live virtual experiences that allows for a direct, rich, and authentically new moviegoing experience.

“Compellingly, Kinema is today building the future of screening movies: secure high-quality streaming in a truly social and distributed way – driven by the filmmakers, curators, and their communities, versus a handful of gatekeepers.”

Image: Christel PI / CC BY-SA 2.0 / Edited for size