Horowitz and Forte bought tickets to the convention as exhibitors — which they were not — in order to get a list of potential clients.
“We were pretty guerilla in our tactics,” Horowitz says in a phone interview. “We literally were knocking on doors. A lot of people, I mean, Sony was like ‘we don’t take unsolicited screeners. Get outta here. But other people were like, ‘you guys are pretty ballsy.’”
Ultimately, a company called NanoTech Entertainment bought the rights. NanoTech is a media conglomerate which leverages sophisticated new technologies in its distribution methods. It will make Moonshine Kingdom the first film to stream in 4K on its Nuvola NP-1 device (which runs on Android operating software) later this month.
That sounds like gibberish to most folks, and Forte acknowledges that at this point 4K viewers are still a niche market, but but he’s excited about the opportunity nonetheless.
“Literally the only way to view our movie is in the highest quality available,” he says.
Not to be confused with Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom — “We thought that would help,” admits Horowitz. — Moonshine Kingdom follows the travails of an Amish man who is shunned by his community after military service overseas. He stumbles into the underground world of “shining” and the violent, racially charged feuds it engenders in the Amish foothills.
The film’s $32,000 budget was supplied in large part by an Israeli investor who runs a network of gold and jewelry shops in the Cleveland area.
“We made a commercial for him, which never made it on TV,” says Forte, “but then he was like, ‘do you want to make a movie?”
Horowitz sees the experience as an incredible stepping stone. He’s already working on a script — potentially involving the Horseshoe Casino — which he and Forte hope to develop soon. He’s also applying for admittance at the American Film Institute.
“I sold my first film in Hollywood the same semester I graduated,” says the CSU film product, “so that’s pretty exciting. It’s just almost ironic that the first 4K streaming movie is all about Amish people. ”