MovieSet Raises $2M to Bring Fans Behind the Scenes

MovieSet has raised $2 million from Rho Capital for its movie production portal, which offers movie fans a peek onto the sets of upcoming films — while they’re being produced. Basically, it gets movie producers to post online what would later become DVD extras before a film is even released. The startup demoed its tools at the Under the Radar conference in Mountain View, Calif., today, after a busy two weeks of signing 75 movies at the Cannes Film Festival and closing its funding. However, it’s still just pulling itself off the ground.

The Vancouver, Canada-based company is targeting independent filmmakers and talent agents at places such as CAA, at first. Presenter Mark Rutledge, the company’s COO, said MovieSet is not initially trying to cut deals with major studios out of concern they are “notoriously slow-moving.” (He also said MovieSet actually turned down a deal to promote The Dark Knight because it wasn’t sure its site could handle the load.) Rutledge said a recent hit was a live video Q&A with actress Michelle Rodriguez about the new movie Battle in Seattle (I think this is a clip of it).

Rutledge noted that the film industry spends $9 billion globally on advertising each year, but only 4.4 percent of that spending is online. MovieSet eventually wants to share ad revenue with film producers, though it hasn’t set that up yet.

The company also offers online production schedule management tools for movie crews, which seems like an altogether different business.