May 23, 2018 · 20 min read

After amassing an incredible 15 awards from 10 different US film festivals during the 2017–2018 season and critically acclaimed in the US press, CinEvents brought the much anticipated documentary, Skid Row Marathon to cinemas across the UK and Ireland for a one night only release on the 9th of May 2018. Due to public demand and incredible post-event buzz encore screenings are being confirmed and added.

Skid Row Marathon is the truly heart-warming and inspiring story of an unlikely group of individuals from LA’s Skid Row who demonstrate how the transformative powers of running and the support of Superior Court Judge Craig Mitchell aided them onto the road of rehabilitation from drug abuse, homelessness and crime.

“I just felt I had to personally sit down and share with you how INCREDIBLE, POWERFUL and completely INSPIRING the Skid Row Story is!!” Facebook user.

Skid Row Marathon Running Club
Judge Craig Mitchell


CinEvents secured partnerships with Runner’s World, The Big Issue and Marathon Talk as key Media Partners to promote the film in their publications, podcasts and social media channels via a mix of advertising and editorial features.

As the leading authority in running, Runner’s World provides invaluable guidance and advice for runners of all abilities in an entertaining and enjoyable format to its 230k+ readers and 300k+ social media followers. Runner’s World supported the promotion of Skid Row Marathon by giving CinEvents access to a key target audience of people who not only fall into the AB demographic but equally have a common interest of running, a key theme within the story of Skid Row Marathon.

The Big Issue is a weekly news and entertainment title which is designed to entertain and educate readers. As The Big Issue provoke editorial that tackles issues such as homelessness, the housing crisis and lead the debate to push towards changing lives and mind-sets, they are the perfectly aligned title whose ethos reflects that of what the Skid Row Marathon’s story tells; giving less vulnerable members of society a chance to work their way out of poverty through their own determination. The Big Issue supported the release of Skid Row Marathon into UK cinemas by curating a range of entertaining content which was shared with their 402k+ readers, 122k+ social media followers and 300k unique users as well as using their vendors as a tool to sell the publications on the night of the event outside selected cinemas.

Marathon Talks is the UK’s number one podcast, released free every week the show has had almost 5 million downloads with listeners across the world. Presented by Martin Yelling, lifelong runner who supports and explores the physical and mental health benefits of running.

CinEvents also partnered with The Running Charity who support homelessness within the UK through the power of running to help them build sustainable and healthy futures. The Charity supported the promotion of the Skid Row marathon release by bringing awareness of the release to their members and followers over their blog and social channels.

Screening were set to support The Big Issue Foundation, The Running Charity and Judge Mitchell’s Skid Row running club with a dedicated fundraising page.

Total reach: c. 741,354

“Your film was incredibly inspirational and emotive, 14 of us girls from our running group Flyers Southend sat there transfixed and sobbing. Congratulations on the award, so very well deserved” social user.

EVENT PROMOTION provided a list of participating cinemas, times and further information about the film, which was generating approximately 2,000 hits a day in the lead up to the event:

“At the end of the almost hour and a half documentary, the entire theatre, some with tears in their eyes, gave a standing ovation not just to the directors of “Skid Row Marathon”, but also to those whose struggles and triumphs they had just witnessed”, The Corsair.

nitial Coverage

Runners World Magazine announced the screenings in the UK via a three page feature in their January edition, followed by subsequent articles, social posts and podcasts.

Why you need to see Skid Marathon: Skid Row Marathon is the heart-warming and inspiring true story of an unlikely group of runners from LA’s Skid Row”.

Official Trailer


CinEvents engaged Get Shorty to produce a 10 minute pre-film which interviewed well known faces amongst the running community discussing the transformative powers of running and how running enriches their lives. This included representatives from The Running Charity, gold medallist Jo Pavey, BBC Radio 2 presenter Vassos Alexander, Marathon Talk presenter Martin Yelling, the co-founder of parkrun Paul Sinton-Heweitt CBE and BBC news presenter Sophie Rayworth. This element of the film generated additional press and positive reviews from a number of publications who sympathised with the additional layer of emotion it brought to the experience. Additionally, these influencers helped kick off additional buzz amongst the running community.


The following titles also featured news of the release: Fab UK, ATV today, Entertainment focus and many more. In addition bloggers Maria Runs and The Dad Blogger used their channels to express their excitement and reviews of the film.

Media Partners promoted the event and continued to support the film release:

The marketing continued via Media Partners’ channels right up until the main event with further Marketing activity including….


irgin Money London Marathon

CinEvents secured the support of Virgin Money London Marathon who showed their support by promoting the preview screenings and main release via online, social and newsletter support that target the 50k+ runners of the VM London Marathon 2018 as well as their historic database of runners. In addition CinEvents secured Judge Craig Mitchell a place to run the VM London Marathon and appear on the celebrity stage at the VMLM registration expo.

Judge Craig Mitchell at on VMLM celebrity stage.


CinEvents had Judge Craig Mitchell and film producer Gabi Hayes and director Mark Hayes literally running around London for a interviews, appearances and preview screenings.

CinEvents arranged interviews for a number of news and radio stations including BBC who interviewed the Judge and Gabi Hayes over an 11 minute period.

Further interviews include BBC Scotland, BBC Kent, Runner’s World, The Quietus, My Film Club, BBC Radio 2- Breakfast, BBC Merseyside and Talk Sport.

Judge Craig Mitchell’s also met with The Running Charity, to do some filming and meet the young people that they are currently working with. This visit was well documented across social media creating extra coverage and awareness of the Skid Row Marathon film as well as The Running Charity.

review Screenings

The preview screenings took place at Cineworld O2 (21st April) and Everyman Canary Warf (18th-20th, one shower per day) increased awareness of the film within the running community by coinciding with the week of the VM London Marathon expo, where those registering their place at the Virgin Money London Marathon had the opportunity to see the film in cinemas across the city on these dates. Anybody who went to see the preview screenings also received a free runners world magazine. On Saturday 21st April at the Cineworld screening, Martin Yelling hosted a Q&A session with Judge Craig Mitchel, film producer Gabi Hayes and director Mark Hayes.


CinEvents also secured other promotional features through publications and their channels to feature advertorial and editorial content, these included Men’s Fitness, The Red Bull Bulletin, The Guardian, The Sunday Express, The York Press, The Metro Online, Athletics Weekly, Health and Fitness Magazine, Huck Magazine and many more.


On top of the fantastic advertorial and editorial pieces written and spoken about, Film Critics and Bloggers gave reviews reflecting the positive delivery of the documentary.


Every Film blog 9/10!

“Skid Row Marathon is a wonderful story of humans being nice to other humans, providing them a means of escape, of turning their life around. The running is almost secondary to the friendly ear the Judge and his compatriots provide. It’s something we should all do a little more of” , OC Movie Review.


One Room With a View 4/5

Film Enquiry (19,000 monthly readers), Vulture Hound (22,000 monthly readers), The Guardian (428,000 reader) and many more also praised the film on various channels…


Sarah Saw a Movie Review.
Backseat Mafia film review.


Square Chapel cinema in Halifax promoted Skid Row Marathon across all of their social channels and via their website, as well as sending out a press release to subscribers and organising a value adding star guests (see ‘During Event’ section below)- resulting in a sell out show!

Vue Cinemas featured the Skid Row Marathon movie within their Upcoming Highlights brochure which was available to pick up in Vue Cinemas across the country.

…..Studio cinemas started to introduce Skid Row Marathon’s characters to their audiences via Twitter creating anticipation before the release date!

…..Whilst other cinemas such as Picture House Uckfield and Rio Cinema continued to post about the event in the weeks lead up to May the 9th, highlighting the films story and added benefits such as the Free Goodie Bag that the audience would receive on the evening.


Broadway and Saffron Screen cinemas continued to promote to audiences via Twitter to boost ticket sales days before the event. Whilst other cinemas across the UK continue to push the film through twitter utilising powerful quotes, imagery and the trailer.


In the lead up to the event CinEvents secured business’ and influencers who have aligned ethos’, themes and interests to the Skid Row Marathon movement, to promote the event and run competitions to win tickets.

Run Mummy Run has 54,000 members within their Facebook community which welcomes females of any ability to join and gain support, encouragement and motivation- with an ethos based on kindness Run Mummy Run is a place to find friendships, confidence and enjoy all the good that running brings. CinEvents and Run Mummy Run worked together to promote the uplifting and humbling Skid Row Marathon film to the Run Mummy Run community and gave them the opportunity to win tickets to see the film at a cinema of their choice.

HIIT Kitchen are a well-known independent health food eatery and small business who help support the local community as well as raise awareness on healthy food and lifestyle. They support those within the fitness community by providing locally sourced and delicious meals that support an active lifestyle as well as hosting fitness classes and running clubs in their store weekly. CinEvents and HIIT Kitchen collaborated by raising awareness of Skid Row Marathon through a competition on HIIT Kitchen’s Instagram page, handing Skid Row Marathon leaflets to their customers in store and running a competition in the virtual goodie bag (see section ‘During Event’ below) for a member of the Skid Row Marathon audience to win a weekly meal plan.

CinEvents also worked with blogger and fitness guru Active Alexandra. Alexandra loves to support the local community and has a particular interest in the positive powers of fitness which she uses to motivate her 35.4k followers on Instagram. Alexandra ran a competition on her Instagram page, giving her followers the chance to win x2 tickets to see Skid Row Marathon on the 9th of May; she also gave a fantastic synopsis of the film and created an Instagram story where she spoke about the film!


I’ve just been told about a film being shown in the cinemas on the 9th May only, about a high court judge who gives people on skid row in LA a second chance at life by coaching them to train a training for something so challenging, it gives them purpose, raises their spirits and transitions them from homelesss and helpless people who are struggling to sober, rounded people who have another chance.. helping them find dignity one step at a time. Sounds so inspiring and can’t wait to go see it!
If you would like to go see it, comment ‘#skidrowmarathon below and I will randomly pick someone this Friday 4th May at midday to get 2 tickets to go see it at a cinema showing it near them (111 cinemas across the uk to pick from)! *UK ONLY and competition not associated with Instagram in any way .. if you want to buy tickets to go see it, here is the link or it is in my bio! 😘 (will put the trailer swipe up on my story if anyone wants to watch it)”

HelsBels is a London based award winning fitness blog which writes about her adventures of getting fit, and having fun with fitness. Followed by over 700 people through her Facebook page, HelsBels went out to her audience and readers with a competition to win x2 tickets to see Skid Row Marathon on the 9th of May, as well as writing a heartfelt and complimentary review.

CinEvents also continued to work with the official partners of the event; The Big Issue and Marathon Talk continued to engage their audience by giving them an opportunity to go and see the film by winning a pair of tickets.


Throughout the build up period of the official release of Skid Row Marathon into cinemas on the 9th of May, social media became increasingly more noisy around the topic of Judge Craig Mitchell and the humbling story of Skid Row Marathon….

CinEvents kicked off daily notifications to followers to create new conversations and reminders, this included the sharing of articles and reviews that were being published in the close lead up to the event as well as daily introductions to the characters of the film…

CinEvents also targeted running clubs and pop culture providers such as Londonist and Time Out London, to tap into their followers and amplify the topic of Skid Row to start more conversations!

Authors’, Celebrities and Key Industry Influencers took to social platforms to encourage their follows to participate in the Skid Row Movement…

Whilst the general public, tweeted, posted and shared their excitement in the lead up to the film, enticing further conversations across social with bloggers, influencers and even the official partners such as the Running Charity and Marathon Talks…

And publications continued to post about the film and release articles right up until the 9th of May such as the Metro, The Red Bull Bulletin and The Big Issue..

During the Event

CinEvents wanted to ensure that audiences across the UK didn’t only walk (or run) away from the film feeling moved, motivated and inspired but also wanted to give them something to add extra value to their event cinema experience, so, in true ‘Marathon’ form, CinEvents curated a virtual Goodie Bag which includes a range of offers, freebies and competitions for audiences to get involved with post event. The Goodie Bag was activated by an onscreen QR code prior to the movie starting which lead through to a Goodie Bag page of offers:

Before the film, cinemas were provided with cast sheets to give out to viewers so each member of the Skid Row running club was introduced before their story was told on the big screen. These added touches were spoken about over social media:

Square Chapel Cinema in Halifax added an additional layer to their showing of Skid Row Marathon by organising a Q&A session with Rachel Ann Cullen, author of Running for My Life, where her and Dave Garratt discussed Rachel’s book which she was signing on the evening for members of the audience. Rachel and Dave also went to BBC Leeds to talk and raise awareness about the film, running, books and mental health.

The Running Charity also put on a Q&A at the Manchester Printworks viewing after the film took place. The running charity shared the journeys of young people that they have worked with which resonate with the transformative powers of running that are demonstrated in the story of Skid Row Marathon.


By 9pm on Wednesday evening, once screenings had finished, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram became a mass of conversation around Skid Row Marathon. The general public shared their experiences, emotions and inspirations that the film had left them with. Positive sentiments were shared across channels by the audience, giving special mentions to those involved in the film such as Running Charity, Skid Row Marathon running club, The Big Issue and Marathon talks.

Running clubs posted team pictures…

Further reviews from bloggers such as The Running Princess , The Run Betweeners, and This Vet Runs were released to the internet, praising the film and giving it fantastic reviews.

“The premise is simple and humbling in equal measure. Put on some trainers and run. With others. Run a little further each time. Support each other. Stick at it. Commit and improve”, The Running Princess.

Skid Row Marathon was also featured on BBC 5’s Inspiring Stories two days after the event…

Featured on BBC 5 Inspiring Stories

Further buzz and noise around Skid Row Marathon created an influx of traffic onto the Skid Row Marathon landing page, with a large amount of people demanding it to be shown again through the Demand It tab.

Continue traffic onto Skid Row Marathon’s landing page post event.

…. and after such fantastic reviews, positive sentiment and high demand across the country from those who missed out of want to see the film #onemoretime CinEvents will be looking to run the film on an #encore basis……


Written by


An Event Cinema Distributor with a difference. We believe that great Event Cinema can help sustain and grow the event cinema industry.

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