Ourscreen Lets You Host Your Own Private Cinema Screenings

By Gerald Lynch on at

You don't need to have your own MTV Cribs-style cinema room to get your favourite films back on the big screen. Taking a leaf out of the KickStarter book of crowdfunding, the people-powered cinema service Ourscreen launches this week, allowing you to host your own screening at a local cinema.

Supported by cinemas in 13 UK cities (including London, Bath, Brighton, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Exeter, Henley, Liverpool, Norwich, Oxford, Southampton, Stratford-upon-Avon and York -- most of which are part of the Picturehouse chain), Ourscreen lets you pick a film, a date and time for your screening, gives you the option of listing it as a private or public showing, and then tasks you with sharing and publicising the event in order to sell enough tickets to make the screening happen.

There's a selection of 200 films currently available on the service, from recent cinema runs such as The Grand Budapest Hotel and Terry Gilliam's Zero Theorem to classics like Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid, Scarface and The Terminator. But the Ourscreen team, through its links to distributors, has access to some 20,000 films that can be organised upon request, as can brand new films, such as the semi-biographical Nick Cave film 20,000 Days which is set to become available to Ourscreen users day-and-date alongside its standard cinema release date. Likewise, if you have your own amatuer film you'd like to show in a cinema setting, that too can be arranged (providing it has BBFC certification).

Ticket pricing is determined by three factors -- the time of day at the cinema you choose, a price set by each film's distributor for the flick you have selected and the percentage that Ourscreen takes for providing the service. Even with these considerations, ticket pricing is no more than you'd expect from your local multiplex. You'll have a set number of days by which your screening must meet a set number of tickets sold, but you could in theory have a screening for just yourself if you booked up every ticket solo.

As such, it's looking like a great resource for movie clubs, party planners and those wanting to make for a particularly romantic night out with a loved one. Screening organisers are able to list specific instructions for each showing too -- if you wanted to organise a fancy-dress event for Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas ala Secret Cinema, you'd just pop the details in with the listing, which would then be visible on the Ourscreen website. With piracy concerns an ever-doom-mongering issue for cinema, this personalised, community-driven experience may be the perfect way to sway those who'd otherwise torrent a recently-missed movie ahead of its DVD or Blu-ray release.[Ourscreen]