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Old December 29th, 2006, 08:06 PM   #1
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How Do You Get Your Movie Paid For?

What I mean by this is; when you are making a feature length film, how do you get money so you can afforded everything. I'm not talking a big budget, I'm talking like, $200 (thats the goal at least).
I am new to all of this so please go easy on me. I am just wanting to know how you guys do it.

Thanks!
~Gabriel
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Old January 2nd, 2007, 11:04 PM   #2
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I gave this thread a few days and no one as replied yet... Is it a hard topic? Is it something I said?

I would really like to know more about this... I need to know ASAP.

Thanks!
~Gabriel
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Old January 2nd, 2007, 11:39 PM   #3
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Probably the mention of $200 Gabriel, you need way more dollars than that.

Try contacting or joining a local videocamera club, you should get many ideas for your production including how to run a realistic budget.

I'm not referring to the clubs but be very careful about getting associated with folk who'll tell you stories that end up costing you money. Good luck.
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Old January 2nd, 2007, 11:42 PM   #4
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Thanks Allan. you are right, 200 dollars is a joke. But I will not need much. less then a grad, but I would be happy with just $200.

And I have looked for video clubs, but there is none in my area, so I am out of luck on that. thanks for the suggestion tho!

~Gabriel
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Old January 3rd, 2007, 12:53 AM   #5
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Old January 3rd, 2007, 05:06 AM   #6
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Gabriel, There are a few ways a film can get funding. First of all you have to have a very good script or no one will give you the time of day, its also alot harder if you have never done a movie before so its kind of a catch 22.

I'm gonna talk about indie feature films because with hollywood you need to be as much a business man as you are a filmmaker. The two main ways to get money for your film are
A)goverment fundung i.e people like (in my case here in scotland) Scottish screen or Skill set .
B)Private investment, which can mean anyone willing to give you money

In the case of goverment funding you will have a lot of stiff compotition from many other filmmakers so your script has to be excelent. Let me tell you they don't just give out money willy nilly to anyone who claims to be a filmmaker you need to have a regestered film company, ours is called Camera Shy Productions and it is regestered as 'dormant' which means we make no money, you will not make much if anything making indie films i'm sorry to say, if someone buys your film or distributes it then the distributer will make most of the money and you get a little morsel thrown to you (but hey any money is a triumph). The annoying thing is it is more about who you know in these orginizations than how good you are at making films, i saw a short film a guy made which was 2 years from script to final product which is shamefull to me, we film a feature in 2 weeks and have it completed in 6 months, he was given funding which paid for all his equipment etc and when i saw his film i was shocked at how bad it looked and that was all because he knew someone

In the case of private investment, this is route you are most likely to get money. If you can get a hold of it you should watch a film called 'an American movie' it is pretty much exactly how most indie filmmakers operate. You go around everyone, doctors dentists business men, Sam Rammy went around these people with a bed sheet and a projector to get funding for evil dead and he's now directing things like spiderman. The most likely source of money will come from Family and friends. If you ask all your relatives for $20 each for your film all you need is 10 relatives and you will have your $200. It works exactly the same way with larger amounts, if you have a good script and business plan, maybe a trailer or something to give them a sneek peek you can approach anyone who will listn and if you can get one guy to put in $5K the next guy will be more willing since you allready have investment maybe giving you even more. 5 or 6 serious investers and you can have yourself $30, $40 or $50 grand, don't get me wrong this is not at all easy either after all they are business men and know a thing or two about money which is why talking to a distributor first is a good idea, if they like the script and agree to buy and distribute the film you are much more likely to get investers.Now comes the depressing bit you the filmmaker are gonna get stiffed rotten, you do all the work while your investers and distributers get most of the finacial bennefit, BUT you are now a real filmmaker and if you can stick it out you may just get bigger and bigger budgets and eventually make some good money. Remember Filmmaking is like sh##ing bricks, its hard painfull work and it can leave you with a traumatic experience which can put a lot of folks off doing it ever again.

We have shot two feature films now, the first one was very bad, we didn't know what we were doing and we made every mistake in the book and came up with a few more to add to it, the main thing is we did it right. We wrote it planned it scouted locations gathered the equipment and people and held auditions for actors, we had the whole shoot planned but because of how inexperienced we were we screwed it up by picking locations that were very far apart and that spelled disaster. With our second that i am currently editing leasons learned from the first film meant that this time we were better prepared chose our locations wisely and had a harder screening process with actors and things are looking good, the only thing you are at the mercy of once you have the money is bad acting. Bad acting will quickly destroy your film, never ever use your friends or familly and always hold auditions. Audition as many people as you can because out of 100 actors maybe 10 can actually act. Like Allan said above find people who do the same thing, i found college more valuble because of the people i met rather than the technical stuff, these people are still with me today and we have since gathered a great core crew.

Having said all that, after a failed first movie and a reasonably good second which were funded by family and friends in the region of $20,000 only now that we have a background and a product that shows we know what we're doing are we going to apply for goverment funding for our next feature called 'the barracks' have a look http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=82524

I hope this helps you understand funding a bit better. Hey i've got a lot to learn myself.

Andy.
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Last edited by Andy Graham; January 3rd, 2007 at 09:18 AM.
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Old January 3rd, 2007, 11:01 AM   #7
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i have a friend that has shot 3 features for $10,000 each ...
he asks friends/relatives for 1000 each .. in past he shot on XL1, DVX100 .... couple years back he raised $30k from many persons and found himself in hot water with SEC/local DA when some investors complained ... he moved to ?? well nobody knows ...
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Old January 3rd, 2007, 12:16 PM   #8
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Wow.... Thanks guys! You have really opened my eyes. I now understand things a lot better. Thanks alot everyone! And thanks Chris for moving this thread, I was just about to ask you if you could.

Alright, sounds like I got a lot of work in head of me.

Thanks everyone!
~Gabriel
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Old January 3rd, 2007, 01:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Donatello
i have a friend that has shot 3 features for $10,000 each ...
he asks friends/relatives for 1000 each .. in past he shot on XL1, DVX100 .... couple years back he raised $30k from many persons and found himself in hot water with SEC/local DA when some investors complained ... he moved to ?? well nobody knows ...

LoL very true, there is definitley the risk of inprisonment if you screw up badly enough which can happen easily. If i had went after funding for the first movie we made and it went as badly as it did i'd probably be either living next to dons friend or sharing a cell with a large angry scotsman who likes to drop the soap.

Be very carefull with investors, make absolutely SURE you can do what you say you are gonna do and make SURE the investors know that it is a RISK they are taking as the film may not do as well as anyone thought. Get all of this in a contract and have a lawyer look over it or else a cell is where you will be if the sh#t hits the fan.

Andy.
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