The time has come for a new media ecosystem.

Last September it was with a sense of pride that Icarus Films was able to celebrate our 40th anniversary. And it was gratifying to receive the acknowledgements and compliments for our work.

But even then the writing was on the wall—the old ways of doing things are no longer going to be enough to keep us going.

In the past we tried to keep up with “the pace of change,” for example by launching our own home video line, and creating (with Bullfrog Films) a streaming service for universities, Docuseek.

However the sale of DVDs has continued to fall off dramatically. And the digital landscape changes radically. For instance: Netflix largely stopped buying smaller, independent films and documentaries; specialized SVOD services like Fandor and Filmstruck have closed; and mega media companies continue to consolidate, and announce plans for expansion.

In the face of all this I’ve come to believe that if we are to survive—and here I mean more than just Icarus Films—we have to build a new, more or less parallel and viable market. An alternative media ecosystem, if you will. So last year I had conversations with other distributors similar to Icarus Films — Distrib Films, Grasshopper Film, First Run Features, KimStim, and Women Make Movies, and with our partners in Docuseek, Bullfrog Films.

We all agreed that what was most needed now is a new, independent, SVOD service. A home for foreign language, art-house, social issue, and documentary films. Precisely the films that are harder and harder to distribute, to find, and to watch.

A viable alternative platform must be built (and survive!) for a viable alternative media ecosystem to exist.

And so was built, with the support of the companies named above, and launched in March,

I believe that if Icarus Films is to survive until even just our 45th birthday, will have to be a success.

That is why i am taking the unusual (at least for me!) step of writing a (somewhat) personal letter to you all: to ask you to join us in this risky project, and become a member of today. currently has nearly 550 titles available, with many more added all the time—29 films will be added just this month.

So go ahead, take a look at where we’re at so far:

OVID is not expensive, and we need a lot of subscribers to reach break-even!

Please join us, and help build a new space for the films that I, and if I may be a little presumptuous (since you are on our email list!) you appreciate, care for, and value:


Jonathan Miller
President, Icarus Films

P.S. Some fine print: is currently only available in the U.S., we expect to be available in Canada within a few months. The cost is $6.99 per month, or $69.99 per year. There is a 7-day free trial when you sign-up. Thank you!

Join me.

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