From the last days of Web 1 through the birth of Web 2.0...

Netribution had two lives.

It launched on January 1st 2000 as a weekly magazine and filmmakers' encyclopedia, running for 99 issues past the dotcom crash until February 2002. Some is archived here.

In January 2006, Netribution returned as a dynamic user-generated filmmaker group-blog, running until May, 2014, when the last user-submitted article was taken. Some highlights, below.

Random archive…

The early days of Web 2.0

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11 August 2006

From Free Film Movement to Cluetrain: the importance of personal filmmaking

"As filmmakers we believe that no film can be too personal. The image speaks. Sound amplifies and comments. Size is irrelevant. Perfection is not an aim. An attitude means a style. A style means an attitude.” Lorenza Mazzetti, Lindsay Anderson, Karel Reiz, Tony Richardson - The Free Film Movement, February 1956 "

"For every entry in the encyclopedia, there is now a Web site. For any idea you can imagine — and some you can't — there are thousands of articles and images electronically swirling around the globe. But that's not the real story. That's not the big news. The word that's going around, the word that's finally getting out, is something much larger, far more fundamental. The word that's passing like a spark from keyboard to screen, from heart to mind, is the permission we're giving ourselves and each other: to be human and to speak as humans." Chris Locke, The Cluetrain Manifesto (Chapter 1), March 1999 ...

Sally Potter: “The beginning of a new way of looking at film”
18 September 2009

Sally Potter: “The beginning of a new way of looking at film”

"Anyone can be a filmmaker. What's really hard is to make a good, interesting film. A computer doesn't help you write a better novel; writing in a notebook longhand is just as good. "So technology can't do the job for you, but it can make the medium more accessible to more people... Within a short time, I could get 30,000 people coming to my site, from countries where Rage...

EWAN MCGREGOR: How it all began - Exclusive video interview
01 November 2006

Ewan McGregor: "You can do whatever you want if you're passionate about it"

In a 30 minute non-PR interview, Ewan McGregor talks with Netribution's Nicol Wistreich about his early days, the beginning of interest in drama at school, and travelling around Africa with Aids campaigners. He talks about his first ever play, practicing the lines to the sherif of Nottingham to himself, and overcoming the negative perceptions of people around him to get where he is now. The interview comes in four parts...
03 September 2006

Torrents, piracy and beyond: will the film industry survive?

"So the guys who started this business all cheated somebody to get there, and now they're being cheated, perhaps, by all these crazy, geeky people all over the internet. I must say, my anguish level is not great."Richard Dreyfuss

"although iTunes has 70% of the pay to download music market - only 1 in 40 of all tracks downloaded on the web are ever paid for. That's 2.5%" ...

25 November 2008

As crunch and piracy hits indies, micro-presales, crowd-sourcing and other options

An article in the LA Times features news of a crowdsourced / micro-presales success story: Actress-writer-producer Sybil Temtchine has raised about half of the $600,000 budget for her film "Audrey" from female business leaders. About a year ago, she sat in a Borders and collected the name of every famous femal...
11 November 2007

Links to one thousand film funds in 46 countries

In Europe last year there was €1.5bn in public funding for film & video projects - and its often the same people getting their hands on this cash. Information on media finance in 46 countries One of the most popular parts of Netribution in 2000 was ou...
06 March 2009

More good ideas from the music industry : crowdfunding perks

Former drummer of Nine Inch Nails' Josh Freese's offerings for his micro-presales / crowdfunded album has some great possibilities for filmmakers going the same route. "For £10,000, name film's villain after your high school bully, shoot tequillas on the beach on a full moon with Johnny Depp, get a song conposed and sung in your honour at the wr...
15 March 2016

Crowdfunding’s lack of sophistication around risk: is staged-finance the answer?

“Staged financing must become the film business’s immediate goal.” – Ted Hope, Producer & Head of Production, Amazon Studios, September 2013 Crowdfunding’s lack of sophistication around risk Much, if not most, of investment strategy is about dealing with risk. A backer of a project – be that an equity or debt investor who is hoping to see some kind of profit, or a crowdfunding supporter who wants to get their perks and see the finished film – has to predict risk. Normally, the closer a project goes from idea to release – from pitch to screen – the lower that risk gets; it's reducing all the time. To refl...
In memoriam : interview archive
  • Nik Powell: 4 Nov 1950 - 7 Nov 2019

    Nik Powell: 4 Nov 1950 - 7 Nov 2019

    After Nik Powell co-founded Virgin with school-friend Richard Branson, he ran Palace Pictures with Stephen Woolley, and later Scala Productions, where they both produced and found some era-defining films and filmmakers (Neil Jordon, Sam Raimi, the Coen Brothers, Lars von Trier, Shane Meadows), before leading the European Film Academy, and finally running the National Film & TV School. Powell had the rare combination of creative and entrepreneurial vision – along with a perhaps even rarer warmth, openness and geniali...
  • Roy Disney : 1930 - 2009

    Roy Disney : 1930 - 2009

    Roy Disney, nephew of Walt and general protector of Disney, has passed away. I was lucky enough to meet Roy in 2000 at the Belfast Cinemagic Conference, and it has stood as one of the more memorable encounters of my working life. I was quite nervous beforehand yet without need - he was warm and genuine in his convictions, unassuming with a quiet strength. [Netribution, Dec 2000] Roy worked for the 'Mouse House' for over thirty years before Michael Eisner pushed him from the board [only to get his own back, pushing Eisn...
  • Mary Selway : 1936 - 2004

    Mary Selway : 1936 - 2004

    Mary was casting director for Spielberg (Indiana Jones), George Lucas (Return of the Jedi), alongside Superman, Withnail and I, Alien, Harry Potter and many more.

  • Stanley Forman : 1921 - 2013

    Stanley Forman : 1921 - 2013

    Archivist and filmmaker, Stanley built the UK's largest left-wing footage library, and made a series of films about Chile under Pinochet, including Companero, about Victor Jara

  • Jim Gilliam: building a people-powered movie distributor and financier with Robert Greenwald

    Jim Gilliam : 1977 - 2018

    If you can't raise finance for your feature, and cinema chains don't want to touch your film, what can you do? Until recently that could have meant the end of the project, but the web offers some interesting ways of changing this. "This was not like putting a blog post up and all of a sudden everybody comes and knocks our door down. We'd carefully cultivated an audience and put a lot of effort into the technology to pull them all together so that we could email them all at the same time." Jim Gilliam, producer of Bra...
  • Nik Powell: 4 Nov 1950 - 7 Nov 2019
  • Roy Disney : 1930 - 2009
  • Mary Selway : 1936 - 2004
  • Stanley Forman : 1921 - 2013
  • Jim Gilliam: building a people-powered movie distributor and financier with Robert Greenwald
22 July 2009

Khine Wai Zaw, human rights activist, watches Burma VJ and shares his story

Burma VJ has been met with very positive reviews in the UK following its release last week, with a 94% Rotten Tomatoes rating, but what do the Burmese depicted in the film make of it? In his first contribution to Netribution, JJ Kim travelled to the heart of the pro-democracy movement in Thailand to watch the film with Khine Wai Zaw - who was involved the Saffron Uprising of 2007 - and hear his story. I...
06 March 2009

Mohamed Al Daradji's Son of Babylon feature wraps filming in Baghdad

Film looks at Saddam regime's 'modern holocaust' - second feature from Leeds based Oscar-shortlisted producers Human Film - 400,000 bodies in mass graves found since 2003 from over 30 years of rule - cast and crew are made up of many survivors of regime - includes lead actress Shazada Hussein; the only woman to witness against Saddam during his trial ...
29 January 2006

DON CHEADLE - Playing Paul Rusesabaginia

"What they choose to greenlight or not to greenlight is based on the tastes of the studio. And the tastes of the studio are largely about what they think is going to make money. It’s commerce. The sort of cyclical self-fulfilling prophecy that they always point to is that black movies don’t make money...
13 March 2009

Franny Armstrong - Determination amidst a rising sea of stupidity

As the Age of Stupid opens with a record-breaking simultaneous world premiere to a potential million viewers across 550 screens in over 60 countries over the...
08 August 2009

The Yes Men fix the world. We ask what keeps them going?

As the Yes Men - the thinking-person's Sacha Baron Cohen - see their latest film released in the UK, Netribution sneaks its way into a secretive underground political cell known only as 'Soho House' to find them out and learn more. ...

Contributors included

Co-founder & Editor-in-chief

Tom Fogg

Northern & News Editor

James MacGergor

After bringing dozens of film stories and scoops from Scotland and the North of England to the London film set in the first Netribution with the weekly column Northern Exposure, Shetland-based James (pen-name for a film producer) produced and re-produced over 650 stories for Netribution's re-birth from 2006. He wrote Shooting People's Wideshot magazine and a chapter of the Film Finance Handbook.


Stephen Applebaum

Stephen has shot the breeze with everyone from Beyonce to Al Gore, Michael Moore, George Clooney, Bill Murray, Terry Gilliam, Vidal Sassoon and Jesse Eisenberg. He's the author of The Wicker Man: Conversations with Robin Hardy, Anthony Shaffer & Edward Woodward – and published dozens of interviews on Netribution.

Intereviews, news & reports

Suchandrika Chakrabarti

From reporter and editer for national newspapers and international news agencies, journalism and media trainer to presenting the Freelance Pod podcast – Suchandrika also wrote almost 100 articles for Netribution. Get her weekly newsletter here.

Reviews Editor

Lawrence Boyce

Laurence published 46 'Special Edition' DVD review columns on Netribution. He was the director of the Hull Short Film Festival, short programmer for the Leeds Film Festival and lives in Talinn, Estonia.

Carnal Cinema & Whining & Dining columns

Andrew Cousins


  • Dotty S Parker, Leanne Smith, Ann McLuskey, Claudia Fogg, Lauren Archer, Joe Pearshouse, Sandip Mahal, Ben Blaine, Carolyn Atherton, Tamsin Ranger, Andrew Torr, Nigel Ward, Emma Carter, Sonja Henrici, Rich, Thierry Bonnaud, Marek Steven, Caroline Bottomley, Jesse Tate, Rose Chamberlain, Lisa Wolfe, Grace Ashworth, Philips Cinema, Sam Clements, Kathrin Merk, Kari Ann Shiff, Sofija Trenchovska, Claire Chabat, Tim Clague, Helen Dugdale, Dashiel St Damian, Sophie Mount, Elio Espana, & many more

Eric Dubois

Parisian cartoonist Eric Dubois was resident with Netribution during its first few months relaunch in 2006, illustrating all 54 of the original Carnal Cinema series.

Most Popular

Khine Wai Zaw, human rights activist, watches Burma VJ and shares his story

Burma VJ has been met with very positive reviews in the UK following its rele...

Before Pirate Bay & Cluetrain: The Temporary Autonomous Zone

A rushed three hour write-up on the Pirate Bay en route to the Star and Sha...

The Yes Men fix the world. We ask what keeps them going?

As the Yes Men - the thinking-person's Sacha Baron Cohen - see their latest f...

Simon Pegg - How to Lose Friends and Alientate People

Fresh back from a whistle top promotional tour where he faced a grilling by h...

Sally Potter: “The beginning of a new way of looking at film”

"Anyone can be a filmmaker. What's really hard is to make a good, interesting...

Franny Armstrong - Determination amidst a rising sea of stupidity

As the Age of Stupid opens with a record-breaking simultaneous world premiere...

The World Premiere of Fantastic Mr. Fox will open the Times BFI 53rd London Film Festival

The Times BFI London Film Festival is proud to announce that this year's Fest...

Tom Fogg, Wendy, Nic Wistreich

Where it all began

December 1999, by co-founder Nic Wistreich

I'm desperate to launch in the twentieth century, and work night and day around Christmas to get 800 pages ready and uploaded New Years Eve. I'll never forget the bewilderment and shock when I realised that it had worked - that I had a site online. What I failed to do, however, was upload the images - here was a big sexy site with no pictures. But I had a train to catch - and hopped up to Edinburgh, partied in the millennium, watched the sun rise over Arthur's seat, got a train back to London, went to a screening of Fantasia 2000, went home, and uploaded the missing files.

2002 epitaph

by co-founder Tom Fogg

We embarked on this lunacy with no experience, no parental consent and no degree - just an acute ache for success that only the young have the energy and innocence to jeopardise in their quest. On the other side we've understood that we are adults now (I'm almost sad to say it) and besides, success stories are so predictable.