Before the Movie: Personalized screen ad company continues growth path

Features
Technology

One of the newer players in the cinema-advertising landscape is Fairfield, Calif.-based Before the Movie™, headed by president and chief executive officer Corey Tocchini. As we first reported last May, the company evolved out of Tocchini’s creation of screen ads for his father Daniel’s Santa Rosa Entertainment chain of cinemas. Since that time, the firm’s client base has grown from over 700 screens in 30 states to nearly 1,000 screens.

As Tocchini told FJI exhibition editor Andreas Fuchs last year, “Our team works with first-run theatres, some art houses and discount theatres. We have luxury and dine-in venues. We also have drive-ins… I developed an intermission show because most drive-ins still have double features. Of course, we recreated dancing hot dogs and made them all cool and retro.”

Before the Movie is the only national company that produces custom pre-shows for the individual theatre owner. “Our niche–and I knew going in that we are not Screenvision and not NCM, and we are not trying to be them–is our focus on local. Even though our show does include national advertising, the bulk is dedicated to local advertising, content and theatre-specific messages… Local ads really help bond each theatre to its individual community. We believe that when you go to the local theatre and you see the ice-cream shop down the street or a favorite local restaurant up on the screen, you identify with that.” The preshow also includes features like trivia, behind-the-scenes interviews, and the option to show independently produced short films curated by Morgan Spurlock’s company Cinelan.

For the second year in a row, Before the Movie has been recognized by Inc. magazine as one of America's fastest-growing privately held companies. Tocchini reports that “we pay our exhibitor partners twice monthly, when the norm seems to be quarterly. And we produce our exhibitors’ policy and theatre-specific spots free of charge.”

Tocchini’s wife, Keyo Tocchini, is being promoted to president of the company. Corey notes, “She is and has been responsible for all of our back-end operations to this point. She has virtually trained and managed our entire staff for the last five years and cares deeply for the independent exhibitor and the small businesses we service on a daily basis.”