Aussie Film distributor FanForce has today launched FanForce TV, an on-demand movie streaming service. The platform features 50 movies so far, including the 2020 Oscar-winner, Parasite; powerful Australian documentary In My Blood it Runs by Maya Newell; and Damon Gameau’s inspirational climate change doco 2040. Other films include Michal Kondrat's docudrama Love and Mercy; and Fat Fiction, a film that questions decades of conventional wisdom and advice around saturated fats. More films, including 2013’s ground-breaking Blackfish, will come to the virtual box-office soon.

The line-up is a carefully curated collection of work chosen for their focus on social consciousness. “We support independent, social-impact films”, FanForce founder Danny Lachevre said in a press release.

The platform works two ways. Its first function is much the same as other conventional on-demand video services: pick your film, pay the rental fee (price is dependent on movie – but it hovers around the $10-mark) and then sit back and enjoy. But there’s also another way you can watch.

Before coronavirus hijacked its operations, FanForce had more than 250 scheduled movies and Q&A sessions with expert panellists lined up in 37 countries. The lockdown and closure of cinemas across the globe has changed that. “So, we moved them online and rallied the directors and panellists to livestream their scheduled Q&As and take questions from the audience via live chat,” says Lachevre.

“We’re hoping it will bring together audiences in a more intimate way than traditional streaming and video-on-demand platforms, especially those who are really feeling the absence of the unique, shared experience of going to the cinema to promote discussion and a sense of community.”

FanForce calls this feature a Home Premiere film because your movie ticket purchase also gains you access to online resources such as Q&As, behind-the-scenes footage and links to forums. “We will schedule these events at a specific time and date, and your ticket will give you early access to watch the film,” says Lachevre.

Fat Fiction director Jennifer Isenhart welcomes the new platform and its Q&A feature, and says it’s particularly useful for independent filmmakers who are trying to reach a new global audience. “Our events scheduled for the US, Europe, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand feature livestream Q&As with some of the world's most respected experts in diet and health. This helps us to make a big impact.”

Additionally, FanForce TV’s Home Premier allows businesses, schools and organisations to host their own movie screenings and discussions. And its Affiliate Program gives users a cut of the profits for recommending films to mates.