‘The List' gets a big DVD deal

Filmmakers from the Charlotte region should take note of a milestone Tuesday: the DVD release of “The List.”

Usually, a major-label distributor either picks up films from its parent company or snaps up indie releases that built a following in theaters.

But “The List” is different. Gary Wheeler, who lives in Boone, directed this 2007 version of a Christian-themed legal thriller written by Charlotte attorney Robert Whitlow. He put it out through Mountain Top Releasing, his company, to select theaters and a limited box office.

But it's getting a wide national DVD release by industry heavyweight 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, whose recent slate includes “The Simpsons Movie.”

“I think all independent filmmakers want the same thing: (for) films to have the opportunity to rise or fall on their merits,” says Wheeler. “So many times, they don't get the opportunity, based on things out of our control.

“Working with 20th Century Fox (means) ‘The List' will get that exposure. … It will be on shelves around the country, and our hope is that audiences discover it, enjoy it and tell their friends about it – that the film will live on its own.”