Filmmakers eye Web, TV as alternate to theaters

Indie filmmakers have had a hard time getting their films sold and distributed over the last few years. Many are feeling the pinch of their hard work not getting any recognition and payday to sustain a living making movies.

So here's a plot twist worthy of any Hollywood movie. To save independent films from extinction, the time may be near for some low-budget movies to play outside theaters, instead of in them.

The idea -- alternative distribution of movies via video-on-demand on cable and satellite television systems and the Internet -- is what some "indie" players at this week's major industry event, the Sundance Film Festival, are backing.

The low-budget film arena that produced movies like Oscar-winner "Slumdog Millionaire," has struggled through hard times as low-cost digital equipment and an influx of investors fueled a glut of films at the onset of a recession.

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