If you’re not familiar with 1k movies, you might think that this phrase is just an amusing bit of Internet jargon, but it’s actually a fascinating and long-lasting trend in the filmmaking world. While 1k movies aren’t quite mainstream yet, they’re quickly becoming recognized as a potential alternative to Hollywood and other traditional film markets. What are 1k movies? And why are they so popular? Let’s take a closer look at this budding movement in film and how it could change the movie industry in the years to come!
Explaining the term
In internet culture, 1K movies are shorthand for 1,000—as in 1,000 true fans. While it was coined by musician and writer Kevin Kelly as an idea to help creative types earn a living from their art without becoming reliant on middlemen (like studios or publishers), it can easily be applied to any industry. So what does it mean? Basically, if you have 1,000 people who will buy your work consistently at a price point of your choosing (say $10 per book or $100 per painting), then you’re doing fine.
This isn’t just some pie-in-the-sky idea; there are plenty of examples of creatives who have followed that model and succeeded wildly. Take Amanda Palmer, for example, she raised over $1 million dollars through the crowdfunding site Kickstarter to fund her last album, Theatre Is Evil. She asked her fans to pay whatever they wanted and ended up with over 16,000 backers who gave her more than enough money to record a full-length LP—and she still made money off each sale!
Benefits of watching low-budget films
Watch low-budget films if you want to keep your entertainment expenses under control, or if you enjoy discovering new cinematic voices. When you watch a low-budget film, you’re essentially paying for a unique experience—the chance to see a unique story or point of view from an up-and-coming filmmaker who doesn’t have big studio backing.
These filmmakers aren’t beholden to advertisers and marketing executives; instead, they can focus on making their stories and characters as authentic as possible. If you’re in it for the artistry, then low-budget films are worth checking out. They can be just as moving and powerful as high-budget blockbusters—just different.
Releasing your film as a 1K movie
A 1K movie is a movie that has been encoded with quality of fewer than 1000 kilobytes. So, what is a kilobyte, you ask? It’s equal to approximately 160 words. If you’re wondering how big of a difference there is between an average movie file and one that has been compressed into under 1000 KB, watch the video below. The first clip is an uncompressed version of The Avengers (6 GB), while the second clip is a 1K version of The Avengers (1.2 MB).
As you can see, it looks just as good—if not better—than its larger counterpart! There are a few other benefits to encoding your film as a 1K movie, including smaller storage requirements for users who want to store their films on mobile devices like cell phones or tablets. This means more people will be able to enjoy your work! Also, some platforms require films to be uploaded in specific formats in order for them to appear on those sites. For example, Vimeo only accepts videos that have been encoded at 1920 x 1080 pixels or smaller.
Tips for making it work for you
What if you could watch every 1k movie you ever wanted to watch, and never pay more than $10 a month for it? That’s what streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, and more offer—but not always without a catch. To get started with your own subscription service, check out our guide on how to pick one that fits your needs.
And once you’ve got a plan in place, here are some tips for getting the most out of your monthly movie-watching budget. If you’re really looking to save money, consider these alternatives to pricey cable packages, which will give you access to just about everything (including TV) that comes through your living room. But remember: If you want to be able to watch things when they air on TV, stick with cable.