FORT SMITH, ARKANSAS, USA, August 23, 2023/EINPresswire.com/ — The River Valley Film Society is exhilarated to announce our new multi-year partnership with Porter + Craig Film and Media Distribution, which is headquartered in Beverly Hills, California. This deal will transform the Fort Smith International Film Festival into a film market, meaning movies screened at the festival will have a chance for distribution. A distributor releases, licenses and positions a film in the marketplace maximizing all of the possibilities to generate revenue. Founding members Sgt. Major Keith L. Craig (Retired) and Jeff Porter will be the opening night keynote speakers and will offer a distribution deal to the top 5 films at the market.
“You have to understand, this partnership is huge,” exclaims Brandon Chase Goldsmith, the festival’s executive director. “The film society’s goal is to grow our region’s creative economy and Porter + Craig will propel the Fort Smith International Film Festival into the Mid-South’s premiere film market with the closest other market being South by Southwest in Austin.”
Porter + Craig Film and Media Distribution has arranged financing and/or distribution for over 100+ feature films, TV movies and documentaries into the US and Canadian marketplace across digital platforms including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Apple, Google Play, Vudu, and Roku, in addition to select theater franchises AMC, Cinemark, and Regal Theaters, along with global broadcast networks including HBO, Showtime, Discovery, BET, CW, and RLJ. Sgt. Major Keith L. Craig (Retired) will share his expertise with filmmakers on how to position their films for distribution and what mistakes to avoid. Sgt. Major Craig illuminates, “This exciting partnership will give us an opportunity to discover regional and international talent and provide emerging filmmakers with the tools they need to succeed.”
FOREIGN MILITARY SALES PROGRAM
Beyond distribution, Sgt. Major Keith L. Craig (Retired) adds his military expertise as a distinguished veteran who served 32 years in the US Army and authored the international bestseller Serving to Lead. While serving as the Senior Advisor to the Commander of Europe, Southwest Asia, the Middle East, and Africa, Sgt. Major Craig worked with Disney to provide entertainment to troops in combat zones including Iraq, Afghanistan, United Arab Emirates, and Kuwait. This “Hollywood Producer” moment led to Sgt. Major Craig being invited to visit Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures in Burbank, CA where he was offered and accepted an executive position in distribution and sales at Disney.
In response to the Foreign Military Sales pilot training program at Ebbing Air National Guard base, The River Valley Film Society is working with the Polish Film Commission to entertain the first fighter pilots arriving from Poland in 2024. Sgt. Major Craig’s experience in bringing Disney to the troops will assist in synchronizing the society’s mission to entertain with military protocol as Singapore starts their permanent mission and pilots come to Fort Smith from Poland, Finland, and Switzerland. Brandon Chase Goldsmith explains, “The Porter + Craig partnership will extend into our year-long programing and help us grow our region’s creative economy from a multitude of fronts.”
ABOUT SGT. MAJOR KEITH L. CRAIG (RET)
U. S. Ambassador, 32-year Retired, U.S. Army Sergeant Major, Humanitarian, and International Best- selling Author, Sgt. Major is a Hollywood Executive, an industry change-agent, and champion for filmmakers. The former Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Distribution Executive is a multibillion-dollar media leader, driven to diversify storytelling around the world.
The former combat hero turned media mogul, Sgt. Major earned 52 awards and decorations in his past life, but is now revered for his contribution to major studio releases such as Disney’s Oscar-winning Coco, and The Lion King, Marvel’s “Best Film The Black Panther, Lucas’ film Star Wars: The Last Jedi, as well as Marvel’s Guardians of Galaxy, and Thor Ragnarok. Sgt. Major is the Co-Founder and CEO of Porter + Craig Film and Media Distribution in Beverly Hills, California, and has forged strong partnerships with Escala Entertainment in Canada, Maverick Post- Production Studios in Mumbai, India. He came into prominence when he joined the Disney sales team that broke the industry domestic box office record of $3.7 billion in 2019, as Theatrical Sales and Distribution Manager for their Central Division.
ABOUT JEFF PORTER
Jeff Porter has spent his years in Los Angeles furthering the ingenuity, creativity and drive which guided him through his collegiate career at UNLV, during which he founded the non-profit Music and Film Development Center which teaches youth about music and film production, as well as the business behind it. His passion for film, in its myriad facets, has exposed him first hand to the blood sweat and tears of running a set from the ground up as well as the countless hours spent as an editor for many projects.
It is what led him to Los Angeles, working his way up from scouting films to selling them. It was there, in a kind of baptism by fire, which Jeff learned about the distribution and financing side of film, working his way up from film scout to president. In the process; finding distribution and or financing for over fifty plus films, managing a team of film scouts, as well as a team of acquisitions executives, overseeing the logistics of several theatrical releases, in addition to cultivating relationships with all of the major domestic and international distributors. Jeff’s drive and focus have been much fed by the unparalleled satisfaction of being able to help filmmakers and producers find distribution and audiences for their opuses.
ABOUT PORTER + CRAIG FILM AND MEDIA
Headquartered in Beverly Hills, California with offices in Washington, DC, Atlanta, GA & New York, New York. Porter + Craig Film and Media Distribution is a worldwide film and television sales organization specializing in the financing, production, and distribution of commercial feature films; it also represents worldwide sales for both its own slate of films and third-party content with an annual slate of 50 to 100 films.
FORT SMITH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL ~ General Admission Information Visit FortSmithFilm.com
Keith L. Craig
Porter + Craig Film and Media Distribution
River Valley Film Society announces big changes