Sales veteran is leaving Trust Nordisk and relocating to Los Angeles to set up a new sales company called Festival Darlings.
Mai wants the company to act as a direct link between producer and consumer by selling films on the internet.
“I have been selling films for about 12 years,” he says. “When I started out, there were tonnes of buyers and you could sell anything. There was a lot of money in the market and the market was driven by pay-TV and DVD which subsidised the incredibly expensive theatrical distribution.”
“But minimum guarantees have fallen over the years,” he says. “Distributors aren’t buying anything and what they are offering is next to nothing. The distributor has become the expensive middleman.”
Mai cites Amazon’s “disc on demand” system which burns discs when a consumer demands it and says there are over 200 platforms like iTunes and Jamaan which give the producer direct access to the consumer.
He wants to acquire films and position them at film festivals to create a profile before making them available to consumers.
He is also exploring the concept of crowd funding which will see the general public pre-buying a film before it is made and financing the finished product.