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July 2005
The Momentum Experience News

New Theatrical Distribution Company Aimed At Urban Filmgoers

Partners and Investors Include

Duane Martin, Tisha-Campbell Martin and Will Smith
Los Angeles, CA (July 15, 2005) - Entrepreneurs Nia Hill, D'Angela Steed and Duane Martin, with investors Will Smith and Tisha Campbell-Martin, today announced the formation of The Momentum Experience, a new theatrical distribution entity. The company, co-founded by Hill and Steed, will employ an alternative model of film exhibition designed to reach urban consumers in non-traditional theatrical venues. Momentum will screen quality, commercially viable films starring people of color in venues outside of the movie multiplex, including playhouses and concert halls. Blair Underwood has accepted appointment as chair of the advisory board.
The Momentum Experience will launch on July 20, 2005 at the legendary Fox Theater in Atlanta with additional dates in Washington DC, Baltimore and Detroit to follow through early August. The company's first release is THE SEAT FILLER, a romantic comedy starring Kelly Rowland (Destiny's Child), Shemar Moore (Diary of a Mad Black Woman) and Duane Martin (All Of Us). The film is directed by Nick Castle, written by Mark Brown, Martin and Tisha Campbell-Martin and produced by Hill, Steed and Martin.

"This unique distribution model was born out of a shared desire by everyone involved to control the African-American cinematic image from start to finish. As most independent filmmakers know, making the film is never as hard as finding distribution. This is especially true for independent African-American films," explains Hill, co-founder and CEO. "The Momentum Experience allows us to deliver to a very specific audience those films that may have been overlooked or underappreciated by the Hollywood studio system."

“The vision of this team is inspiring and their goals address a definite need in the African-American entertainment community. I support and encourage entrepreneurs who take their destiny into their own hands with initiatives such as The Momentum Experience,” remarks Smith, an investor.

The Momentum Experience will use the successful live urban theater model as a springboard to a unique moviegoing event geared toward black audiences. Over the last 20 years, producers of live urban theater, also known as the "chittlin' circuit" or "gospel play movement," have successfully catered to the urban market to the tune of more than $250 million.

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