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-   -   Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these cases? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/taking-care-business/537488-do-filmmakers-tell-cast-crew-where-money-coming-these-cases.html)

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 12:35 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
On your proposed budget you can't afford to pay people for the amount of time it takes to shoot a feature, even with 3 cameras. Especially if a good percentage of your budget is being spent on buying kit. I'm working on the assumption that each person will get paid the rate everyone used to get paid on shorts in the Irish Republic - 50 Euros a day. BTW that wouldn't be legal in the UK these days because of the minimum wage.

Good professional actors may want the union minimum, which is higher.

People working for free is the only way you can shoot on micro budget films.

Josh Bass July 6th, 2020 12:39 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Ryan, dude, there are literally books with titles like "how to make a film for no money". Why not buy one and read it? Hell of a lot cheaper than just about any mistake you might make that'll cost you big. Also Robert Rodriguez has a VERY well-known book, "Rebel Without a Crew", that in excruciating detail talks about the making of El Mariachi and exactly how he did it for very little (post stuff aside). Why not read that?

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 12:39 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay. How do other filmmakers get by with spending so much less money, like in Film Riot for example, or how do they convince people to work for less?

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 01:15 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
They manage because the film maker can sell themselves and their project - the cast and crew are investors in the film by working for free. In doing so, People think that it's worthwhile as a credit, experience or this person is on the way up and they may get work on one of their films with a proper budget. The latter tends not to happen because the producers hire experienced people.

Rainer Listing July 6th, 2020 01:16 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I wasn't going to get involved in this, but, just watch "Bowfinger".

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 01:20 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay well I can try to sell it better to people then and hopefully that will work. I was told before that I need to get better actors and a better DP, so hopefully I can try to do so, but still stick to a lower budget, just by selling it more.

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 06:04 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
"Following" also shows you how to do this for very little money - shooting at weekends with friends.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Following

Pete Cofrancesco July 6th, 2020 06:15 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
You seem to perpetually be on the cusp of filming this movie. When are you going to start filming? Back in February you were talking of buying a Black Magic Pocket camera...

It’s not a bad idea to research and read books that describe methods used to save money on small independent films. Obviously just because someone did something, doesn’t mean you will be able. You have to have a desirable project and be a charismatic person to attract people to work for free or share in the future potential profits. But you don’t have these qualities...

You say you’ll hire and buy everything you need then you say you don’t have the money then you’ll get external funding but then you can’t then you find yourself back at square one, film with your friends on an old dslr. You’ve been going around in circles for years chasing your tail. Do you enjoy getting yourself into these intractable problems?

From my observation you seem to enjoy most planning and talking about what you might do instead of actually doing it. The years are flying by. Are you going to be happy looking back when you’re old at all the years spent talking?

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 11:36 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay yes I do want to make it. I wanted to start this year earlier, but then covid got in the way. It's been hard to make it because of that so far, so I thought I would use the time to cut down the budget if possible, as well as script changes to improve.

But I do want to do it, just not sure how with this covid problem lately.

As for shooting with friends on weekends, my friends don't know how to do the filmmaking jobs though, so shouldn't I get people who have experience filling the roles though? I've been told before don't use friends, and past experience suggests to use people with more experience, if that's true...

Paul R Johnson July 6th, 2020 11:52 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Multicamera is good when you are shooting things that cannot be re-done. Set that gets damaged, explosions, riot scenes, boxing match scenes (as in Rocky type movies) Anything that involves lots and lots of people and things. It saves no time at all on a normal scene because the Director cannot direct Multicam without becoming a TV director - skilled at looking at multiple streams, and then you need a floor manager to get the talent acting to the right camera, otherwise, you end up with three times the material shot, but no guarantee ANY of them captured exactly what you wanted. You then have to plan every shot to cover the movement and requirement of each camera, and then at the end of the shot you need to assess if it worked. If I was a director with no track record, finding it hard, and not having trained actors, then is inc reading workload x 3 a sensible idea? No - not ever!

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 12:00 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay thanks, I can just use a single camera then. But I was told I need trained actors before for the product to be good, so I would still try to attract them.

But it seems that everytime I try to come up with new ways to get things done faster, such as multicam, or other things I have come up with, it seems that everything I come up with to try to solve problems, causes other problems. So maybe I should stop trying to think outside the box, and just keep doing what I have been doing before then?

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 12:13 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I suspect Christopher Nolan's friends were more talented than your friends are, that's something you to need to work out. I assume that the people you make the films with aren't friends. To do this, all you need are a group of people with common interests, how you collect them is up to you, it's part of making these small budget films. No one is going to give you the answers, you know your area.

Unfortunately, I suspect you don't have Nolan's skill set, in that he had the photographic knowledge to DP and direct a film on B&W 16mm shooting on an Arri 16BL.

Attracting trained actors or people who can give something to a part is part of what you do as a director. Casting the right people is one of the first steps. so you need to do the donkey work and not waste time procrastinating on forums.

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 12:30 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay sure. There is one director I worked with before, and the AD from his movie, who said they were both interested in my script, and helping out, but of course I would still need a DP and PSM, or people more familiar in those areas. But I could still use the talents of those two to help out though.

Paul R Johnson July 6th, 2020 01:18 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Stop this crazy fixation with trying to crew your project like a major movie - it simply isn't. You are maddening in the need to give people professional titles and professional roles when what you really need is a reduced headcount made up of just a few people who know what they're doing. Giving people titles they don't deserve is amateurish in the extreme. What do you need? A director who knows how to direct and manage people. Somebody who understands cameras and somebody to capture your sound. Decent camera people will have an understanding of lighting, and the sound person will be competent at booming, recording and fitting personal mics and handling radio. Other roles can be done by wives, girlfriends, husbands and relatives with proper instruction. Your cameraman is probably NOT a Director of Photography - they operate the camera and do what the director asks for. You don't need supervisors, or producers, or any of the other silly terms you use. You MUST accept that it's an amateur project. Even a professional with an empty diary is going to be working in an amateur status if they're not being paid. They may act professionally, but have to deal with keen amateurs.

If you audition amateur actors - what are you looking for? Somebody who has stacks of pro acting experience, or somebody who has dates free and can hopefully learn their lines.

Stop pretending to be running a proper production company, because you are a keen film-maker frustrated by working with people as green as you are.

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 01:23 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay, well I thought for a crew I would need a few people. Someone who knows the cinematography, lighting and camera, someone to do the audio, an assistant director to me, if I can and someone who can do the make up. I can try to do the wardrobe and production design myself, with the cinematographer if I have to, but I could use make up as well, I figure.

But as for actors, are you saying I should work with less experienced ones?

The problem with accepting that it's an amateur project, is that I was told before that my projects look too amateur. So therefore, wouldn't it be reasonable to want to not make it amateur therefore, and try to get away from that? It's just if I keep doing the same thing over and over, it will always turn out bad I feel, so should I not try a different approach, and not try to make it amateur?

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 01:40 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
You work with what you've got, find people who have the right skills or who are willing to learn them. I used a civil engineering student on one of my early films and he was a Swiss army knife of skills.

Cast the right people for the parts, use non actors if they're right for the role. That's all part of casting these things. Just make sure they're reliable.

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 01:48 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay sure. I was going to ask a certain DP that I worked with before on someone else's feature, but he is more use to shooting documentary style cinematography, and not sure if that would be right for mine, but maybe he could still be good for my style of script maybe...

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 02:03 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
You won't know unless you ask them. You're not going to get a DP with vast feature experience and coming from a documentary background isn't unusual for those working on major feature films.

You don't need to ask on forums for an opinion about people we nothing about, these are decisions that you should be making on your own.

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 02:27 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay for sure. I don't know if I need vast experience as long as they can do feature film genre cinematography as opposed to documentary style cinematography of course.

Paul R Johnson July 6th, 2020 03:42 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
This is the problem.
Quote:

I don't know if I need vast experience as long as they can do feature film genre cinematography as opposed to documentary style cinematography of course.
To get feature film genre cinematography requires quite a large amount of experience. It requires equipment that is used in a quite unique way. Do you actually have these people available? In my own area, for example, I can think of nobody who is likely to want to work on small projects with arms tied firmly behind their back.

Have you had many people promise to do your projects who walk away, or backtrack on what was promised.

I really cannot imagine how you will schedule your movie with so many people saying they will contribute, on vastly reduced professional rates, with no contracts, and actually turn up when normal fees for other projects appear?

How on earth can you secure quality people without paying them properly??

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 04:29 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I don't know, but people say the best way to save on money is to have people volunteer. That is the paradox I am faced with.

But I was told the cinematography on my past projects is not good enough, so I need to find someone better in that area, as well as better actors.

Pete Cofrancesco July 6th, 2020 04:39 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Hes only been back for a few days and I need to smoke a J.

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 04:47 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
The only way you'll get people to volunteer is to let them do something they don't normally do.

You don't have the Lighting gear to shoot in a feature film style, so you need someone who can shoot with limited lighting, but has a cinematic sense of style. You should talk to this camera person to see if they have a sense of what you're after and more importantly find out if they're interested. It's no use wasting time on a forum, you won't find any answers to that here.

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 04:55 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Okay sure I will try that, thanks. Another thing is, I was thinking to save money just don't use lav mics. I already have equipment for sound, but not lavs, just a boom. And my field recorder only has two channels anyway.

So I wonder if I should just use a single boom mic. Because if I am using just one camera and one camera operator to save money, I can also save more by having just one mic, and one boom operator, if that makes sense to do so as well.

Brian Drysdale July 6th, 2020 05:07 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Don't waste time on mics at the moment. We're not on your crew, we don't know the action, the shots that you want and so what's required.

It also depends on if you're asking about lav mics or radio mics, the former can either be hard wired or used on a radio mic.

Ryan Elder July 6th, 2020 09:27 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Okay thanks. Well one of the biggest things to get around is also the covid thing, so do I just not follow the laws and make the movie anyway? But it all gets caught on video then of course.

Brian Drysdale July 7th, 2020 12:10 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
It takes time to get through pre production and get a team together. You can then worry about the rules when that's in place, there are now film making guidelines, which people will want to follow, unless they're all drunk party people. You could even set it in the time of covid and see how that affects things.

I shouldn't worry, by the time you work out your script it'll be months away before anything can be done, given how long it'll take by going though a rewrite by using forum messages that you seem to have difficulty in following.

Ryan Elder July 7th, 2020 12:27 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay. Well my biggest concern is the seasonal change, and since a lot of people can only work weekends, I need enough weekends to last a season such as summer, otherwise winter will come and make the season inconsistent of course. So I may need to start next year to get more shoot days if people can only work weekends but I would like to shoot it in a sooner amount of time if possible.

One filmmaker I worked with before got a lot of actors and crew to shoot it all in 14 days straight, but I don't know how he talked them into it.

But as far as the script goes, I made changes based on people's advice, so hopefully more people will like it better as a result.

Brian Drysdale July 7th, 2020 12:42 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
If you plan it out, you can shoot the exteriors all in one season and the interiors as and when you can. If your film is set in a city the season changes tend not to be that obvious, unless you've got snow on the ground or a lot of trees in the shots.

You''re allowed to make script changes, even on the day of shooting, the editing in post is basally another rewrite. However, you don't seem to be picking up the points (and possibilities) being made in the forum messages that quickly, You seem to reply without really thinking. Going for long walks is one of the best way to work out how you can use or reject things. You can't expect a forum to make decisions for you, they can pose questions, but you have to come with the answers.

Paul R Johnson July 7th, 2020 12:45 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
The trouble with extended schedules is that the cast might not be available, and of course will have things like haircuts, diets or excess burgers to mess up continuity, plus even crew with different equipment.

Ryan Elder July 7th, 2020 12:54 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Yeah for sure, I've had to deal with extended shoots before, but a lot of people are only available on weekends they say. I can try to talk them into taking time off work maybe?

But on a prior short film for example, an actress lost 20 pounds halfway through shooting. We had her wear a baggier shirt, and people said they couldn't tell, unless they paid attention, but still a risk, for sure.

Brian Drysdale July 7th, 2020 01:17 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I've done extended shoots, you do have to be flexible about no shows and be careful about reliability issues. It's easier with younger people or singles, who don't have other commitments, like family

It's a bit like doing evening classes, everyone shows for the first couple of lessons, but the numbers tend to drop off as the course progresses.

Ryan Elder July 7th, 2020 01:20 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh really? Actually in my experience so far, it's the older people who show up a lot more, but that's just been my experience.

Brian Drysdale July 7th, 2020 01:35 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Older singles are probably going to be more reliable, the younger ones will depend on how driven they are and if they're part of the group.

Ryan Elder July 7th, 2020 01:39 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay. Another reason may be is that the older people's kids are older to look after themselves, where as the younger people of course need babysitters. In fact, I have a shoot right now that's been delayed because of the same reason.

But that is just my guess. The script I want to for a feature though, does have quite a few parts for older people, if that helps though.

Brian Drysdale July 7th, 2020 01:54 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Selecting people would depend on their commitments, even on a two week shoot babysitters would be an issue,

There are other ways, you can do it one week blocks for example. However, in the end, if it was easy everyone would be doing it.

Ryan Elder July 7th, 2020 02:06 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh you mean shoot an actor in close up, with no one else, there, then do another one? I've tried that before, but I was told later, the performances did not match or play off each other correctly, and so I didn't want to do it again after that. Plus doing that means I can't have a master shot for safety. But if I absolutely have to, I can try to do that again and hope it goes well.

Brian Drysdale July 7th, 2020 03:03 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Well, you could do that, but I meant filming for a week and then having a break for a period and then doing another week's filming.

Alternately, you could film for one day a week or you could just film each night or any other breakdown, As long as it's regular you will get the production done within a few months.

Again looking at your writing thread, are you actually writing this thing? Can you not work anything out and the implications of following a set of actions for the characters? Do you actually know your characters? There are a lot of suggestions in there that you don't seem to be able to apply in your head, seemingly, they're just messages that you reply to with more questions. These are decisions that you, as the writer have to make.

Go and read William Goldman's screen trade books, they're easy reads and you'll learn more about screen writing there than you will writing messages on forums.

Pete Cofrancesco July 7th, 2020 08:19 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Good to see we actually got him to drop his professional pretense and make the best of the current situation. I’d imagine there are many actors out of work looking for something to do. Scenes that don’t involve groups could be handed during the week while reserving the rest for weekends. If he worked efficiently and knew what he was doing he could knock this out in a month.

Ryan Elder July 7th, 2020 11:30 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Hopefully a month, if everyone is available. I was advised by another filmmaker that actors would be more willing if they got to wear masks, because of covid, but I feel they will not be able to show much emotion on camera, if they all wore masks though.

I could work with what I have, it's just when I did that before, the products didn't turn out well. So I thought I had to go above and beyond the people I know currently, to have better and cinematography, if that is what's needed. But I can try to work with what I have and still do make it professional level, if that's possible.


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