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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)

Ryan Elder June 28th, 2020 05:44 PM

Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these cases?
 
When making a feature film, if all the money is coming out of your own pocket, do you normally tell the cast and crew that, or do you make it sound like you have external funding, in order to give a less personal impression on everyone, if that makes sense?

Paul R Johnson June 29th, 2020 12:05 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
In bigger budget productions, the minions have no need to know this kind of things, but in low budget productions where they get asked to work cheap, they deserve to know why. I'm doing a low budget one now which normally I would not do. I'm very conscious every invoice I produce is coming from his own money. I try to save him money where I can, yet he insists on wasting it on things that don't matter. I'm concerned that at some point it dries up. If he shared his finances a little more I could help, but of course he tries to talk about 'the company'. As I am buying considerable amounts of stuff then adding to the invoice, I worry the well will run dry.

Pretending to have investors is pointless if they don't believe you, and you won't be able to function properly if you start to lie. People are good at spotting bluster, and lies. Remember that you do not pick up on these traits, or things like subtle comment or sarcasm. Be honest and if they know it's your own money they will, if decent people, be more understanding about spending it.

Ryan Elder June 29th, 2020 11:38 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay. Thanks, I can tell them that it's mine then, I just thought it might look less professional.

Jase Tanner June 29th, 2020 01:56 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Remember the old adage, "actions speak louder than words". I've worked on professional sets for many years, at times professional in name only. If a set is poorly run it won't matter how big the budget is people will know and they won't respect it. They may put up with it for the pay check but they won't respect it. I still work the occasional freebie or low paying gig which I'll do as favour to someone I know and respect or I think the project itself has merit in some way or another. If they're well run I'll respect them as much as, if not more than the paying ones. Why? Because I can see how the filmmaker has worked so hard him/herself to make it good even without any money.

Ryan Elder June 29th, 2020 02:48 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Yeah I can relate to that for sure. In fact the sets I have worked on, the cheaper and volunteer ones, were actually more professional than the more costly ones sometimes.

Paul R Johnson June 30th, 2020 12:25 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
This is your problem actually. You've not been on enough pro productions to understand the differences. Bigger budgets mean compartmentalism. This is perceived as unfriendly, or uninterested by newcomers. A stranger on set gets ignored, nobody seems to chat outside their specialism and people do their job, then go. If you suddenly need a spark, they will not be just standing there waiting. On amateur productions everyone is there all the time for the 'experience'. Do not confuse this with a lack of professionalism or a demonstration of it. If you work with amateurs, like a film club, that's fine, but do not take enthusiasm as a replacement for professional skills, behaviour or attitude.

Ryan Elder June 30th, 2020 01:45 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay, but I should want professional skills over enthusiam, is that right? And I've worked on a couple of sets, where I would say there was compartmentalism to a degree.

Paul R Johnson June 30th, 2020 11:15 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
The snag Ryan, is you want everything, for nothing. If you want good people who work appropriately and without continual guidance, then you have to pay them.

Ryan Elder June 30th, 2020 04:16 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay, but aren't I paying them though?

Paul R Johnson July 1st, 2020 12:38 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I don't know? If they have contracts, Country specific tax and insurance, then pay is fixed and professionally managed. If they get beer money, they've probably sussed its your money?

Pete Cofrancesco July 1st, 2020 06:25 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
1. Professional skillful trade people will not work for free or beer money.
2. Paying an amateur pro money won't make them a pro.

To your original question. Most pros including myself like getting paid up front when working for individuals because the risk of being stiffed is significantly higher than an reputable company or institution. So it would make little difference the source of your money.

My impression of you from your messages here, you are often evasive and not up front. Intentionally neglecting to reveal details in order to present a more favorable image of yourself. It usually becomes quickly apparent when someone inflating themselves. Most anyone with a clue will be able to size up the situation and smell your bs.

Like mentioned before credible pros want to be fairly compensated and will not want to work on a poorly conceived amateur project.

Ryan Elder July 1st, 2020 10:57 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay sure. Sorry, I will try to watch out for withholding details.

So when you say paid up front, do you mean all of it upfront? Because there was one time, I payed one of the people quite a bit up front, but then they took off with the money after, and didn't come back, so of course I don't want that to happen again. How much up front should I pay then?

Pete Cofrancesco July 2nd, 2020 05:20 AM

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

Originally Posted by Ryan Elder (Post 1959955)
Oh okay sure. Sorry, I will try to watch out for withholding details.

I mean that more about here. But never hurts to be straight forward with how you conduct yourself everywhere.

Quote:

So when you say paid up front, do you mean all of it upfront? Because there was one time, I payed one of the people quite a bit up front, but then they took off with the money after, and didn't come back, so of course I don't want that to happen again. How much up front should I pay then?
Sorry to hear that yeah either party of the transaction can swindle. I like to do two things to protect myself. First I get something in writing agreeing to the work expected and the compensation. Since I only do event work an email suffices. Second when work wraps for the day I pay them or when I receive whatever I paid for ie video or audio etc.

Ryan Elder July 2nd, 2020 08:01 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay thanks. Yeah we signed a contract and all, but that person did not care about the contract, it seems.

Well how much percent of the money up front though, should a professional expect to be paid? I can pay at the end of each day, if that's good too.

Pete Cofrancesco July 2nd, 2020 09:55 AM

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

Originally Posted by Ryan Elder (Post 1959957)
Oh okay thanks. Yeah we signed a contract and all, but that person did not care about the contract, it seems.

Well how much percent of the money up front though, should a professional expect to be paid? I can pay at the end of each day, if that's good too.

It's a case by case basis based on how well you know the person. But what you'll learn is someone takes your money and runs or you do work for someone and they don't pay you there's not a lot that you can do. In the US you can try to take them to small claims court but it's a very time consuming process that seldom worth it unless its a large sum of money.

This is why in the long run it's just easier to use a reputable professional even if you have to pay more to avoid any of these types of problems.

Brian Drysdale July 2nd, 2020 12:07 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I strongly suspect that a crew can quickly spot if a film has serious investors. With your budget, it's highly unlikely you could afford to pay the normal rates, so it'll be very much a case of striking deal with them knowing that it's a very low budget film.

If you're worried about people running off, tell them you'll pay them at the end of every day, I've worked on productions where this happens (usually commercials). You can tell when a feature film is in trouble when the crew insist on getting paid at the end of each week.

However, given your budget, you will still run the risk of people leaving if a bigger production comes along, which is the reason why productions like this are often shot in the dead season for the industry. That's usually January or February in many countries.

How much professionals get paid in advance depends on they area of work, Weddings etc have deposits, while freelance TV and Film technicians etc usually get paid afterwards. A production company usually gets staged payments to cover costs, by nature of their work, the wedding people are acting as a production company.

Usually people work for production companies, because it's requirement for the funders.

In the end, I suspect you may still run into difficulties because you don't seem to come over as professional and confident in what you're doing. Which may be the reason that the person did a runner with your money, it's not something that they should have done, but the industry has people who will do whatever they can get away with.

Pete Cofrancesco July 2nd, 2020 04:15 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Brian is on point with everything he is saying.

All of these conversation seem to conclude in one universal point. Making a sucessful independent feature film is exceedingly difficult. You're basically running a production company that has high up front costs with low chance of a payoff if all goes well far into the future.

Your skill set doesn't match what's needed to hire and manage a competent crew, let alone all the creative decision making needed. You're stuck on a singular premise, "you are going to create a feature film no matter what", then asks questions based on that. You're on an endless search for answers on how to accomplish something that is beyond your abilities.

Ryan Elder July 2nd, 2020 04:35 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay, and yes I didn't think it worth it, especially when the other person lived in another city, which would have made small claims court more difficult. But if there are no reputable professionals that show interest, and I am forced to work with unknowns, like usual, do I just offer a certain percentage up front then?

Brian Drysdale July 2nd, 2020 04:38 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
You can if you want, but anyone who knows anything knows that it's extremely unlikely they're going to get paid any money on percentages.

Ryan Elder July 2nd, 2020 04:57 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh why is that?

Josh Bass July 2nd, 2020 07:47 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
ryans talking about percentages of the crew/casts pay, not points on the films profits.

Brian Drysdale July 3rd, 2020 12:39 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
You can pay cast and crew less than their normal rates by doing a deal, although you should be aware of any Canadian minium wage rate laws. It's then a matter of persuading people of the quality that you want that this project is worth doing. It's a lot easier with a short than a feature film because of the time commitment and it helps if you've got contacts who work as professionals. These people usually want to work up a grade to get experience or a credit in a type of production they don't normally work on.

The downside to that is that they may wish to have more kit than you're used to because it's part of it being worthwhile for them doing the job (e.g. the DP may want it for their showreel). For them it's working at the next level up, so what they expect to use may be more than what you're used to. Especially, if you want to work fast and have good visuals.

However, given the size of your budget for a feature film and the ambition, it does seem to be more in the area of the freebie than one where people get paid. I know films with much bigger budgets which were percentages of the profits, rather than payment for the cast and crew.

There's also the scenario where the cast and crew get paid part of their fees and also get a percentage of the profits. Note that this refers to the net profits, which is why people tend not to see any of this.

Ryan Elder July 3rd, 2020 01:45 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay. I would definitely want the everyone to get a percentage of the profits if there is any after, down the line, for sure.

Brian Drysdale July 3rd, 2020 01:50 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Have you thought any of this out? Because I get the impression that you haven't.

Ryan Elder July 3rd, 2020 02:28 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Yep I have. Just trying to get the budget down lower but at the same time, still try to come off as professional as possible.

Brian Drysdale July 3rd, 2020 03:23 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
You sound more like a hobbyist than a professional filmmaker, especially a demanding would be director.

Usually the latter are trying to get more funding because that often directly affects the quality of the final production, especially if it involves action like car chases. shoot outs combined with strong visuals. Once they've managed some how to get enough for a viable production, which often isn't really enough, but way more than what you've currently got, they'll work pushing to the limit, trying to inspire their cast and crew. With the crew getting annoyed by the line producer or production manager trying to cut costs, e.g, their pay.

I'm concerned that you still seem to be back asking basic questions on another forum about your script issues (from the sound of your questions the feature script isn't near shooting), page counts, your short film and other points that were discussed endlessly here and yet you don't seem to have learnt anything along the way. All this doesn't bode well for a would be director.

Pete Cofrancesco July 3rd, 2020 05:28 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Good lord percentages of net profits. That’s like asking them to buy you lottery tickets and you’ll write them a contract agreeing to pay them a percentage of the winnings.

Everything you describe about this production sounds amateur. This falls into the long lists of questions how do I get professional results without spending the money. But now instead of equipment we’re talking about the crew and cast. Being professional is a long process of working years on a pro sets, it’s not something you wake up and decide. So now it’s how do I hire a professional crew without paying them like pros.

Josh Bass July 3rd, 2020 08:00 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I just realized what if any of them Google him and find these threads?

Pete Cofrancesco July 3rd, 2020 12:51 PM

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

Originally Posted by Josh Bass (Post 1959974)
I just realized what if any of them Google him and find these threads?

That's why he is Ryan Ray, Elder, Jim, etc

There's no shame in not being able to pay for an indie movie out of ones own pocket. I don't think any of us would want to but we'd also see the futility of proceeding without outside funding.
All of his question are predicated on I saw a major motion picture I want to emulate how can I do it without having access to everything that they had to produce it.

Ryan Elder July 3rd, 2020 10:18 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh okay, but I should probably still produce it out of my own pocket, if I could not get external funding, I figure.

Paul R Johnson July 4th, 2020 12:25 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Well, you certainly shouldn't borrow the money! So your own pocket is the only likely source isn't it.

Ryan, one thing you never ever do is comment on the MAJOR snags we mention. Somebody makes a hugely important comment based on what we know about you, but you ignore 90% of the post content and only comment on the unimportant stuff.

We are seriously concerned you are wasting your money. You want to create something that you cannot do, with the budget, your skills, other people's willingness to participate, equipment, locations, sets etc etc

You are essentially doing what a small child does. Getting fixated on the end product and totally disregarding and obstacles in the way..

You still don't even know which role is best for you. You are totally unwilling to even consider this - you just want to make this movie. You have pinned the restaurant menu to your door, and have no idea who the chef is, who the suppliers are, who will wait on tables, who is doing the cleaning and washing up, or how many tables you have. You just tinker with the menu on the door. NOBODY is inside and NOBODY is phoning up for tables - but you keep showing people the menu.

Get a grip.

My guess is that you won't even respond to this question at all, and just ask another question, here or on other forums where your failed attempt to be a new person clearly failed again. Even worse, the people there remember your last persona, and remember the same questions from years ago. Do you really not understand how silly this makes you appear? Everyone is gently teasing you about your multiple names, and you have such silly excuses for it. Do you see how unprofessional you are acting, yet constantly you mention your desire for professional acceptance.

Josh Bass July 4th, 2020 12:38 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I honestly don't think he DOES see it that way...remember, we're talking about someone who thinks very differently than most of us do.

Ryan, homie, let's say you do self fund this thing and it's all for nothing...no payday, not even making your money back. WILL YOU BE OKAY IF THAT HAPPENS? Will you be homeless and penniless or still able to survive?

Brian Drysdale July 4th, 2020 01:33 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
In another forum, he now seems to be fixated on coincidences in his script, even though he seems to be aware thar these occur all the time in films. "Dr Zhivago" is full of them, "LA Confidential" has a number of them, James Bond seems to run into them, "Casablanca" is about one. MOVIE REALITY, Pt. 1: Coincidences That Work https://gointothestory.blcklst.com/t...s-2e52de53c906

I suspect, like the pub film director, Ryan likes talking about the details or rather having other people talking about the details of his future movie on forums. However, he doesn't seem to be able to make the next decisive step and make use of the information, so, he just goes around in circles.

In the end, it's how you do it, just like coincidences in a film, it's how you use them within the story and that's down to the person doing the actual work and the decisions make when putting a film together. There are no easy answers from a few lines on a forum, it comes from hard digging at the rock face.

Pete Cofrancesco July 4th, 2020 04:40 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I think this movie of his is an excise in distraction, an escape from daily life and concerns about future. So he doesnít respond or ignores any input that questions should he do it. The only way he can afford to do this for so many years is concentrate on all the aspects that donít cost money ie script writing, planning, watching movies, talking about the minutiae on forums, directing and bringing in people who use their own equipment.

Itís really no surprise he canít get funding with that terrible script and his lack of skill, experience and proven track record being able to pull off sometime of this complexity.

Ryan Elder July 4th, 2020 11:21 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Oh well I didn't think an unknown newcomer could get much funding though. But I could use my money and just attempt to get a cast and crew and make the movie if that's best.

I think of the reasons I have trouble taking the next step after receiving advice is that there are pros and cons in each piece of advice, and so I am not sure which to choose after therefore. The advice is definitely good, it's just different pieces of advice, with pros and cons in each. I can try to work on that.

Pete Cofrancesco July 4th, 2020 11:35 AM

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

Originally Posted by Ryan Elder (Post 1956113)
Okay thanks for the help. Right now I have 50K to use, and can try to raise more.

What happened to your 50k?

Ryan Elder July 4th, 2020 11:45 AM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I can still use it technically, I was just advised by others that I am spending too much and need to cut it down, or at least try to get funding from somewhere else.

Brian Drysdale July 4th, 2020 12:20 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
I assume from a personal risk point of view.

Assuming Canadian dollars, that's still a very low budget for a feature film, especially if you're paying people. .

Pete Cofrancesco July 4th, 2020 12:54 PM

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

Originally Posted by Ryan Elder (Post 1959990)
I can still use it technically, I was just advised by others that I am spending too much and need to cut it down, or at least try to get funding from somewhere else.

I was the one who warned you that it's highly likely that you'll lose all the money you put into this movie whether it's your money or someone else's. And whether you were prepared for that out come. But like most things we say to you they seem to have no effect.

50k might not be a lot for a movie budget but it's nothing to sneeze at and this environment where you can't get a job for who knows how long it be fool hardy to pour that into some risky project.

Ryan Elder July 4th, 2020 01:26 PM

Re: Do filmmakers tell the cast and crew where the money is coming from in these case
 
Yeah for sure. I was advised to make it 10K and people said that more of a reasonable loss, so I am trying to get the budget down that low. What you said had an effect for sure, yes, and that is why I am trying to do it for less now.


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