One of the more remarkable showings in the world of film last year was director Oren Peli's found-footage haunted house flick, "Paranormal Activity." Made on a budget of less than $15,000 and first screened for festival audiences in 2007, the movie bounced around in the back corridors of Hollywood before finally opening wide to record-breaking numbers last fall, after more than 1 million fans "Demanded It" in an unconventional grassroots Internet marketing campaign staged by Paramount.
As we enter 2010, Peli has a lot to look forward to. "Paranormal" is fresh out on DVD/Blu-ray and his sophomore effort, "Area 51," will presumably hit theaters. The director was kind enough to share some of his thoughts on the excitement of 2009 for us to bring to on MTV Movies Blog, so here they are...
To our "Paranormal Activity" fans,
I wanted to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your incredible support now that "Paranormal Activity" is out on DVD and Blu-ray.
As many of you know, the road to getting this movie distributed was long and challenging, to say the least. Looking back on everything, I can truly say that it was your passion and enthusiasm that made it all possible. When Paramount made the decision to play the film in a few festivals, and then at midnight in a handful of college towns, it really was all up to you. If our fans didn't go online and "demand" that the movie expand to their own cities, it wouldn't have gone anywhere. If you didn't spread the word on Twitter and Facebook, and tell your friends and family they had to see it for themselves,, no one would have cared. It was because of you that Paranormal Activity expanded from city to city, and eventually -- when a MILLION of you demanded that it open nationwide -- it finally got the wide release we'd been dreaming about for years!
Without a doubt the most rewarding part of the whole experience for me personally was sneaking into a theater and watching the movie with a packed house, seeing the audience squirming in their seats, and hearing them laugh, gasp, and scream.
Now that Paranormal Activity is out on DVD, you will now have an opportunity to watch the movie in your own homes, and hopefully enjoy it in a completely different way. It is much more intimate exploring peoples' fears of what might be happening at night while they sleep in bed -- and after the movie's over, having to go to sleep in one's OWN bed!
On behalf of everyone involved in the making of Paranormal Activity, we are forever grateful to you, our fans, for your support. And we hope that you will enjoy the experience of watching the movie at home as much as you did watching it on the big screen!