A24 is an independent film distributor that has made its name betting on the kind of quirky, artisanal movies that Hollywood generally ignores, and marketing them through unconventional means. In 2018, it built audiences and fanbases for projects as varied as Bo Burnham's Eighth Grade, the horror film Hereditary, and Jonah Hill's Mid90s, with a blend of zines, podcasts, film-related merchandise, and stunts designed to go viral. A24 forged a distribution deal with Apple to produce films for it. At the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, A24 was behind some of the most buzzed-about films, from its reinterpretation of Native Son to its acquisition of Awkwafina's The Farewell.
The company first garnered attention for the James Franco film Spring Breakers, whose promotion included an image of Franco in a Last Supper scene that went viral. With a Best Picture Oscar win under its belt for 2016’s Moonlight, A24 is now an established indie player and in 2017 the company drummed up more Oscar buzz for Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird. Thanks to a shrewd release strategy and strong word of mouth, the film had the highest per-screen box office average of the year and has grossed $39 million, making it A24’s highest-grossing film. 2017 also saw the release of Sean Baker’s The Florida Project; Woodshock, starring Kirsten Dunst; and Franco’s The Disaster Artist. To promote the film, which earned Franco a best actor Golden Globe, A24 set up theater displays where fans were asked to perform a scene from the film and share it on social media.