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Paramount Introducing Micro-Budget Branch, Insurge Pictures

Feeding off the unprecedented success of Paranormal Activity, Paramount Pictures is gearing up to spearhead another innovative idea. Led by the creative minds of Senior VP of Interactive Marketing, Amy Powell, the division will focus specifically on “micro-budget” movies. And when they say micro, they mean just that. The idea is to give Insurge Pictures $1 million to create 10 films.
There is no question this is an ingenious idea and a compelling challenge...

Apparently the success of Paranormal Activity had a bigger impact on Paramount than we initially thought. The studio is launching a new division called Insurge Pictures that will be specifically focused on "micro-budget" movies (news on indieWIRE). The division has been given $1 million in funds to spread across 10 movies with $100,000 budgets each. This fresh new idea is said to be the creation of Amy Powell, the SVP of Interactive Marketing at Paramount. They're also trying to build a community via the official website, which hasn't yet launched. "We want to try something different and deconstruct the Hollywood system." Read on!
Insurge Pictures won't be looking for films from film festivals, but rather looking for filmmaking teams to produce their own projects. "They hope the movies will serve as a low budget proving ground for new talent and intend to release the movies theatrically." Part of the distribution process will involve new "grassroots" marketing approaches like the Demand It campaign for Paranormal, which I'm not sure will succeed again unless the movie is actually good enough. Their bio blurb on Twitter says: "We love talking about everyone else's movies, so we decided it would be awesome to create a new distribution label to find and share our own movies with all of you. And here we are - Insurge Pictures, an official division of Paramount Pictures."
Here's another one of their intros from the website: "Do you want to see more movies that don't conform to the Hollywood model? Sweet, us too." Sounds like they really want to break through the Hollywood norms.
This does sound like a very interesting, and potentially very successful, idea and I'm already curious to hear about the projects they have in development (if there are any yet). I'm not sure if the success of Paranormal Activity was based solely on the fact that its budget was low and it was marketed in a grassroots way. What I guess I'm trying to say is that I'm not sure that same formula will work for every movie, every time. Some of these may be hits, other may be duds, and I'm wondering how many of each there will be. Insurge Pictures is barely on the verge of launching, so we're not entirely sure when we can expect to see any movies from them.
Their website hasn't opened to the public just yet, but indieWIRE says launch is imminent, so expect to hear more and see a full press release from Paramount pretty soon. Do you think Insurge will be a success?