A small independent film studio in New York City has grown into a critically successful and growing venture.
- The Academy Awards were hosted on Sunday night, and the winner of the Best Picture Oscar went to Everything Everywhere All At Once—a dark-comedy metauniverse film by directors Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert. Brenda Fraser won Best Actor for his role in The Whale.
- Both films were released by A24, which celebrated with Everything Everywhere becoming the highest-grossing and most critically acclaimed film the studio has released since its founding in 2012—accruing $107.6 million.
- The studio continues to cut deals with distributors like AppleTV+ and HBO Max to release its films, raised $225 million in venture capital last year from investors like Neuberger Berman and Ken Fox, and has grown in valuation to $2.5 billion, according to Bloomberg.
Why It’s Important
A24 is one of the largest independent film studios in the world, and it is only set to continue growing and becoming more prominent. It is still a relatively small part of modern Hollywood, but its reputation has eclipsed the scope of its productions.
Sunday’s award ceremony set it above its contemporaries with nine Oscar wins, with Netflix winning five, Disney winning two, and leaving few awards for mainstream studio competitors like Warner Brothers, MGM, and Paramount. NBCUniversal, Focus Features, Searchlight, Amazon, and Apple won nothing.
As Bloomberg notes, the studio has become the successor to Harvey Weinstein’s formerly critically acclaimed work as the head of Miramax, becoming one of the most successful distributors of prestige films in modern Hollywood.
Backing Up A Bit
A24 produces roughly a dozen films annually with an average budget of $13 million and sees modest box office revenues. Last year was the most successful year in the company’s history, with a total domestic gross of $207 million for 13 films.
It was started in 2012 by Daniel Katz, David Fenkel, and John Hodges and broke into prominence with the 2013 film Spring Breakers. It has since become popular in film circles as a studio that releases cerebral, critically acclaimed arthouse films like Ex Machina, Lady Bird, Uncut Gems, The Disaster Artist, First Reformed, The Green Knight, and HBO’s Euphoria.
The studio won its first best picture Oscar with 2016’s Moonlight, and several of its recent films, like Minari and The Whale, have won Oscars.