Editors comment



The Top 100 in 3D


Welcome to April’s issue of OPI. As is now traditional, this is the one where we publish the list of the industry’s Top 100 resellers.


Although a lot of effort is required to compile the list, it is such a good exercise for us because it means in a relatively short time we can get a snap shot of the industry in 3D technicolour.


You can feel the pressure on margins and the pain of taking costs out of your company in the eyes of everyone in your market. It is a real eye-opener to see how that works for a distributor in South Africa, say, or a player in Hungary. The list shows that similarities abound wherever you are. Furthermore it is fascinating to see how the environment in a different market, country or region can shape a business that shares the core ingredients of your own.


The downside the OPI team finds in putting the list together is that you end up carrying a LOT of trivial information about dozens of companies and it tends to invade your life throughout the beginning of the year.


Take this year’s Oscars. For the first time in years I decided to watch it. I even went to the effort of recording it. In hindsight, I wish I hadn’t because it was so dull it drove me to write up a couple of entries – given the Academy’s preference for his ex-wife’s film, I’m wonder if James Cameron would have preferred to have done that too.


I had a lot of sympathy for Cameron that night. Not because I think Avatar is a great film (it’s really a very average one) but it’s so admirable how Cameron fought to get it into your local IMAX. He was already a successful director before he embarked on its creation, but he spent years pushing to get his vision on screen, risking his reputation and his alimony to Kathryn Bigalow on developing technology that nobody else believed in.


While he scored with Titanic, his previous film The Abyss, where he built the world’s largest water tank and dumped actors in it for six months, sank without a trace. Avatar could have been another flop, but it wasn’t. Ultimately Cameron believed people would go and see it and he was right and changed an industry.


There are many examples of individuals and groups of entrepreneurs on the Top 100 list that exemplify this determination to see their vision prosper. Like Cameron they’ve taken risks and opened markets others would not or could not see; invested in technology people ignored; and got the best people around them to achieve their goals. They are all winners and examples to everyone in this and other industries.


I’m afraid we don’t hand out statuettes to the guys listed here but ask James Cameron, that’s really not important.