Why a Christian Movie Central?

In 2010 Peoria, Illinois, we saw how Christian movies were each trying to reinvent the wheel in their marketing. EVERY film team had to try to raise awareness for THEIR film in EACH city they played.

But all their effort meant NOTHING for the film that opened weeks or months later.

The national efforts that did exist had their own issues – including an audience tired of hearing “coming soon to a theater near you” when the nearest theater was 5 hours away!

We decided to change that in Peoria, Illinois. We wanted to capture the momentum of each film to help the next, through a simple question:

Would you like to know about other
Christian films coming to our area?

That simple question… but the answer was more often than not… YES!

With every film, we grew a local audience of people who WANTED to know about future Christian films, so any film coming to Peoria had an audience already and eager to support them!

“Where else are you guys located?”
– Many in the Film industry

We lost track how many Christian film teams, directors, producers, and other asked us this question – they saw us as effective, but thought we were part of a larger organization..

In 2014, filmmaker Chip Rosetti caught the vision and started the Southern Indiana Christian Movie Central, in Evansville – the second CMC! TWO cities, TWO states!!

Four Years of Growth

In 2016, we realized that a coordinated effort would be more effective than a random mix of CMCs with little direction, and in 2017 another SEVEN CMC’s were planted – 5 across central Illinois, plus one each in Indiana (Fort Wayne) and Kentucky (Bowling Green.)

2018 saw another SEVEN CMCs, and 2019 FORTY-TWO, for a total of 58 CMCS.

The start of 2020 saw the ministry set 3 year-end goals:
1. 100+ Christian Movie Centrals
2 All 50 States
3. Reach 25,000 Online Reach

(Social Media plus Email Subscriptions)

We hit goal #2 in mid September (Central Maryland and Santa Fe NM)

We hit #1 in early October (Quincy, IL)

The 3rd goal, which sat at about 9700 at the end of 2019, as of mid October is nearing 23,000.

All this growth has been with a fairly small base of supporters (under 10), and we realized growing that base is critical to further growth.

And we DO want to grow… perhaps DOUBLING the CMC number and online reach in 2021! (Still praying about the final goals)

Christian Movie Central is completely VOLUNTEER run. We have NO paid staff, no salaries. We also have no mortgage or rent as a ministry. This means our overhead is minimal and more of every dollar goes to the ministiry.

We are committed to
LOCAL FOCUS

NATIONAL EFFORT
ETERNAL IMPACT

We exist because of a local focus to share Christian films in a defined area.

Our efficiency comes from the national effort to align branding and use of templates to reduce duplication of work.

Our passion is knowing our effort is not for the sake of a temporary box office, but for the eternal impact of Kingdom growth!

Will YOU join THE CREW?

You can be. Easily. THE CREW is simply our base of recurring financial partners. Any amount over $5 / month.

EVERY member receives an exclusive, not-for-sale CMC THE CREW T-shirt.

There is also a private Facebook Group, exclusive quarterly email updates, and from time to time we might be able to provide other surprises as we work with our partners.

Two main requests:
1. Support your LOCAL CHURCH comes first
2. Meet your PERSONAL and FAMILY needs before us

We believe this ministry is important, but it, like everything, needs to have the appropriate priority.

Join as a “Monthly Movie” Partner

We know people who will buy a movie ticket even if they are out of town when it plays, to “support the film.” That’s great, but empty seats don’t always help the movie.

Taken to extremes (which has been done) can lead to nearly-empty “sold out” auditoriums, which inflates that week’s box office, but with no one to tell their friends to go next weekend, can make week 2 look even worse.

Most of those ticket purchase dollars went to the theaters, then to distributors, and a smaller than you might expect actually gets back to the film team.

If you are in a financial position – after local church support and your family needs – to consider a monthly movie ticket, consider using that amount to join THE CREW and support MANY CHRISTIAN FILMS, not just a one film, one weekend.

Your ‘monthly ticket,’ along with others, will allow us to expand from 101 CMCs now to 200 in 2021. (or more!)

It will help us promote local CMCs to grow the average size from 200 current to…. 250? 300?

And it will help us raise awareness of our efforts both nationally and within the industry. The film teams, the studios, the marketing teams. We want to reach out to the industry from a firm financial footing thanks to THE CREW, so they know we are here for the long term, and consider partnering with us for further opportunities.

Whether your theater of choice movie tickets are $6, or $15, help us help Christian films. You can set your partnership to be paid monthly, quarterly, or semi-annually.

Often go as a couple? Small Group? Sure, you can sign up for any amount at the monthly, quarterly, or semi-annual schedules.

Our “Monthly Movie” level is simply to emphasize the desire to partner with hundreds in THE CREW at an affordable level – you don’t have to be talking thousands of dollars to make a difference!

The focus on recurring partnerships is so we can make financial plans for March if 2021, or next September, or even 2022 (it will be here soon.)

QUESTIONS? PLEASE let us know.

WANT A CMC IN YOUR AREA (or your hometown, college town, or a friend?) Let us know that too!

Because He Lives!

Rich Gerberding
Christian Movie Central – National Director
Rich@ChristianMovieCentral.com