Many filmmakers will show you that the first film they ever produced was in the home, it didn’t cost them anything, other than the price of the film along with a video camera they were already in possession of. Even Steven Spielberg shot his first film utilizing a Super 8mm camera. Oh, and anyway it was a film of his train set crashing! Typical! It is really readily available books and data on basic film making techniques, just not so simple to find financing for film making.
It is now an almost scary mission to find finance for young or upcoming filmmakers, and ultimately everything is determined by the film making budget. Most of the time though, if the film is from the low budget variety, and also the idea is exclusive, you should not have a lot of difficulty financing it.
With that being said however, finding finance for a film is usually as tasking as actually making the film. You will need a business plan first of all, so even before you approach someone to fund your film making efforts, obtain your business plan together. The organization plan should contain a film making budget breakdown, who the intended audience is, cashflow projection, marketing plan, synopsis, biographies and what potential for sales the film with have.
Investors to approach include both film and non-film industry investors. Non-film industry investors are generally speaking individuals who would love to see their name up in lights. You might offer them a credit such as “executive producer”, to have them keen on the idea, and you will even have a rich relative, say Uncle Bob who you could approach. The draw-back of this is the fact, they probably have hardly any knowledge of how things operate in the film industry plus they could make your daily life difficult should you film does not get to the Oscars. Film industry investors are groups of people who come with an knowledge of the Kia Jam, and finance film making in course. These could be studios, distributors, broadcasters or people who will invest to help make money through the film. These sets of people understand the film making industry and probably won’t expect and Oscar, and definitely will at the minimum desire a return on their investment.
Non-film industry investors include banks, rich loved ones, raising funds, and truth be told your credit card! Many confident filmmakers have tried their bank card to good success for financing a small budget film.
To conclude, one word of advice is get a better lawyer, preferably someone who has a little knowledge of the film making industry, who can look after your interests. Film making funding is a reasonably complex process and you should know about your rights particularly when it comes to signing distribution deals.
I used to think that the film students had too little desire for Film Budgeting and Costs (of any type). Not anymore. Recently i did market research of film students in a respected film school. Listed below are the outcomes in the survey:
Over 80% from the students said they felt it was vital that you know more about budgeting and how it affected their careers as filmmakers. Film & Video production is one of the biggest industries on earth (alongside ljlscd manufacturing, needless to say). The wide spread use of digital medium has produced a whole new opportunity. That opportunity, although more affordable compared to the Hollywood style film productions we’ve grown employed to, is still costly and needs financing. How do you get that financing? Where would you start?
Answer: You start using the basics of Film Budgeting, Cost Reporting and incredibly simple Business Plans. When you can calculate a centerpiece, or figure out how to manage a video camera, a Film Finances are simple.
Based on my experience in the last 20 years inside the film industry, I could confidently say: 1. Graduates from Film Study programs who know the basics of film & video production money (Budgeting, Cost Reporting and Business Plans) will find they can handle more responsibility in their film & video projects, and 2. because of this will have more lucrative careers than their peers who haven’t learned to prepare Film Budgets, who don’t understand any production’s Cost Report and who never saw a simple Business Strategy.