I was just curious, based on the content of this site... I assume there must be some entreprenuers or small business owners that post here, who've involved their work somehow in DVD and movies? I'm aksing because I've been throwing around some concepts of my own for some time now; I don't want to reveal exactly what I have planned but the general idea is sort of a dvd and record shop fusion that caters to film and music buffs and artists alike, but that also provides an environment for everyone to sort of hang out and share their enthusiasm amongst each other - if they care to. Sort of like what modern coffee houses have become, only instead of sitting around and yapping over espressos - there'd be a small lounge area with couches, recliners and love seats spread out throughout the back of the shop where people could chill and kick back amongst shelves of rare vinyl and dvd's. Not just specialty products though, the idea is not to create a niche atmosphere for the hardcore and eccentric enthusiasts, but a general location for students and family shoppers looking to pick up a dvd or new music to spend their time and money. Basically an entertaining and inviting alternative to the generic retail movie store. There'd be a large projector screen in the back where we'd constantly run films as people are browsing or shopping, and on designated nights, organize film screenings that revolve around a weekly promotional theme. For instance, one weekend we'd have a horror/cult movie theme or animation night where all dvd's in this section would be discounted, and we'd organize an after-hours screening in the back of the shop which we'd charge minimal entry for (a couple bucks), which would eventually fund such projects and allow us to continually offer weekly discounts and promote the events. Maybe even host a small festival at some point, for student filmmakers to submit entries and win a cash prize or gift certificate from our shop. The idea is, that people looking to just purchase a movie could stop by and do so, but in a friendlier and more fun environment (we'd carry all commercial and mainstream releases) - BUT - at the same time, involved enthusiasts and film buffs looking to pick up a more obscure or specialty title could stop by and the atmosphere would be inviting to draw people in and keep them in the shop. Maybe setup a small theatre-style concession stand in a corner fo the store to sell popcorn or drinks for those browsing the stock aisles or hanging out and chatting with others... I know if I were to walk into a store to buy a movie and was hit with the overwhelming smell of fresh popcorn, I'd definitely dive into my pockets and grab a bag while I continud to shop for my product. Students between classes who have an hour or so to kill, could stop by, browse the aisles to check out if there's anything interesting, and just chill and talk shop about films and records and whatnot. Not only do I think this would be a really original and fun idea, but it would be conductive to earnings as well from a business standpoint because beneath it all, we are operating a store and keeping people around our merchandise and product. The difference between our shop and any other generic retailer though, is that we're initially targeting and drawing in a specific group of people or demographic, and providing them a reason to stay beyond the product alone. No more clueless employees who have to plug every title you inquire about into a computer to check into it, or have no idea about what they're selling. It would be a group of my friends and associates, who know everything about music and films and the products we'd be selling... and are as compulsive obsessive about DVD's as all of us here at HTF... so no more mishandling box-sets at the register or carelessly swabbing a title over the desktop scanner at purchase. I think it would be the perfect place for people passing by to stop in and chat about their hobbies and spend a few dollars on a record or dvd while they're at it. I'm really not sure why most shops aren't like this. Why would anyon want to walk into a boring retail store to spend their money when ALL stores could be more interesting and interactive like this concept? Amyways, I'm thinking of approcahing an existing retail owner who runs a small independant music shop in Montreal, to ask whether he'd be interested in branching out and reformatting his shop under a partnership with me - still retaining his full finances and profits, but just operating under a new roof and by offering him a wider perspective consumer base. I think this would be good because he already has some credibility and pull among certain communities and "scenes", and the inventory is already there. Hopefully it would also provide him the finances down the line, to expand further but he'd basically run and manage his end of the shop as he currently does, and I'd operate mine with all movie or music sales going to each perspective department. I wanted to include music because I'm also really passionate about it, and I think it would be a good means of promotion in drawing in certain crowds. Someone looking to pick up this obscure 60's brittish psych rock record or new indie label hip hop single, would bump into an aqquaintance shopping for the new Godard Criterion release and start chatting. Or just mingle into the other section of the store and come accross some interesting cover on the shelf and it would open people up to new things. Especially if people stop by in groups, I imagine the possiblity of it being a very prosperous venture... At the same time, someone looking to run in quickly and pick up a Bill & Ted or Bruce Willis flick would be able to do so as well. HERE's why I posted this though: I have no idea where to start! How does one who wants to open up a movie/dvd store begin? I wanted to ask the advice of others who maybe in this business, how they got started. How do you order movies from the studios, how do you get distribution? Who would I even contact? From the financial/business end, I'm pretty confident. I have people who'd be willing to invest and partners to go in with. I know how to go about registering a company and the establishment of everything, while somewhat tumultuous, is still fairly straightforward and simple. I just don't know how to approach this from the DVD retail angle... I'd really appreciate feedback and suggestions if anyone has any to offer. Especially current business owners. Do you guys think that this is a good idea overall, and please help me out from a retail stance or link me to a resource that would further explain how to go about getting things started. Thanks so much!!!