It was the need to break free from the monopoly on film production and distribution held by the Motion Picture Patents Company(MPPC), also known as the ‘Edison Trust,’ that caused disruptive innovation to occur within the film industry in America. When it was established in 1908, the Trust was made up of all the major film companies of that period, including Edison, Biograph, Vitagraph, Essanay, Selig, Lubin, Kalem, American Star, America Pathé, as well as George Kline(the leading distributor), and the country’s biggest raw film supplier, Eastman Kodak.
For those filmmakers who declined to join the trust, or were refused entry into the trust, it was a challenging period. The Trust owned most of the major patents relating to film, including the patent for raw film, and they enforced their patents vigorously, often bringing lawsuits and receiving injunctions against those outside of the Trust, who became known as the Independents.
Piaget has been a Premier partner of the Film Independent Spirit Awards since 2008. “Piaget supports artists who display creativity and talent” says Chief Executive Officer Philippe Léopold-Metzger, who believes the company’s commitment to the Awards is a natural fit. Each year the luxury Swiss watchmaker and jeweller presents the Piaget Producers Award in recognition of outstanding creative vision and achievement in independent film.