Christian Cinema On the Cloud With Aspera

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS—Christian Cinema is a Christian film marketing and direct-to-consumer distribution company.
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SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS—Christian Cinema is a Christian film marketing and direct-to-consumer distribution company. We started out selling DVDs of Christian-oriented and family-friendly films in 1999 and with ChristianCinema.com we have entered the digital on-demand arena, streaming movies directly to customers’ TVs, mobile devices and computers. We’re now the largest distributor of Christian movies online, and we run our entire platform in the cloud.

ChristianCinema.com is currently working with our distributors to upload our stock of approximately 4,000 DVDs to our site for streaming. Our distributors send movie files anywhere from 8 GB up to 120 GB. They’re not files you want to transfer via FTP and halfway through have to start over again, especially as some distributors send dozens—or even hundreds—of movies. Some studios tried using FTP, but uploads took a week.

SPEED IS KEY
The filmmakers and distributors we work with often are dealing with release dates and other strict deadlines and need a solution to transfer files to us quickly, without having to ship hard drives back and forth, which we’d still need to upload to the cloud anyway. To solve these problems, we turned to Aspera On Demand. It’s fast, reliable, and enables us to move content directly into the cloud.

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Apsera On Demand flow chart The Christian Cinema digital video streaming platform is a custom frontend and backend content management platform we’ve built in-house, so we were very interested in Aspera’s APIs and browser client. Through the Aspera API, we’ve integrated the browser plugin directly into our portal for our content suppliers, making Aspera On Demand an integrated part of our backend platform where distributors can manage all of their content. This means filmmakers and distributors with a licensing agreement with us can access a personalized account to manage their content and upload their films. They can add and manage titles, metadata, trailer, artwork, pricing, etc.

As soon as they click on “upload,” it triggers the Aspera browser plugin, which initiates the transfer in the background; the real-time transfer status shows on our page within the browser window. They can also upload multiple files with the Aspera client running.

SECURITY AND FAMILIARITY
Security is another important component, as piracy is a huge concern in the film industry. People want their content to be secure and with Aspera On Demand, they’re sending their content to a trusted platform.

Many companies in the film industry already use Aspera so that’s an added bonus. There’s industry recognition for Aspera as a known, robust, fast transfer solution, so that adds strength to our innovative platform.

Aspera’s support crew was very handson and helpful in setting it up. I knew how I wanted our architecture to work, we figured out a solution, and we were able to set it up without too much hassle—all in the space of about a month.

Jared Geesey is vice president of Christian Cinema, where he has worked for more than 11 years. He can be contacted at jared@christiancinema.com.

For additional information, contact Aspera at 510-849-2386 or visit www.asperasoft.com.