This film was an ultra-low budget affair made on just $15,000. It was rejected for Sundance  film festival but was screened at Screamfest in 2007 and then Slamdance in 2008.

Paranormal ActivityWhile doing the festival rounds writer/director/producer Oren Peli impressed enough to be signed by United Creative Artists and the film was picked up by DreamWorks, who initially wanted to remake it. However,  screen testing of the original film were very strong and lead to a $300,000 sequel instead.

Paramount bought it and sent it to college cinemas to test the waters. Meanwhile Peli went online and interacted with the college viewers, getting them to demand where it would be shown next and 12 of the 13 openings were sold out.  It was sold onto 20 more screens including New York.

Viral marketing from the young writer/director himself and staggered the release dates so that people had to demand it, made it a hip. “Tweet Your Scream” campaigns continued to create interests as the movie turned into a commercial success.

Later the film had a full international release in more than 53 countries. It made $194 million which is the biggest return on invest for any Paramount film and caused them to open an Indie division.