Pretty much every filmmaker wants to find money to make their movie. Unfortunately, many don’t quite realize that in order to raise the kind of money you need to make anything above a micro budget movie, you’ll generally need a lot already in place. It’s something of a catch-22. Investors need name talent to market the film, and distribution to make it available. Distributors need name talent and a tested team to give any meaningful commitments, and name taken need to know they’ll be paid. There are ways around all of this, but generally they require money up front. This blog is about how you raise it.
Most of the time filmmakers seek to raise their investment round in one go. A lot of people think that’s just how it’s done, so they ask would they try anything else?
But just as filmmakers shouldn’t only look for equity when raising money, Filmmakers should consider the possibility of raising money in stages. Here are the 4 best stages I’ve seen, and some ideas on where you can get the money for each stage.
Just like all filmmakers and Entrepreneurs are not created equal, nor are all “Rich Guys.” Many will jerk you around, and not actually deliver on what they promise. So how do you know if your potential investor is legit? Well, here are a few tips.
A lot of people are afraid of the complexity of deals with sales agencies. They have a reputation as being very dense, and difficult to understand. While there is truth to this, there’s also a general layout every filmmaker should understand. Many of the pitfalls for distribution can be avoided by knowing these 7 major deal points. That said, you should always have a lawyer or a producer’s rep look over your contract.
A lot of Filmmakers are only concerned with finding investors for their projects. While films require money to be made well, there’s are better ways to find that money than convincing a rich person to part with a few hundred thousand dollars. Even if you are able to get an angel investor (or a few ) on board, it’s often not in your best interest to raise your budget solely from private equity, as the more you raise the less likely it is you’ll ever see money from the back end of your project.
Much of this series has been focused on the numbers behind film investment. While metrics like ROI and APR are very important when considering an investment, they’re not the only reason that high net worth individuals (HNWIs) tend to shy away film. Here are 7 things that are stopping them.
Why Don't Tech people invest in Film? Part 3/7
In the words of Albert Einstein, “The most powerful force in the universe is compound interest.” He also called it “The 8th wonder of the world, he who understands it, earns it. He who does’t, pays it.” In this post, we’re going to be examining how we can use the notion of compound interest in comparison to tech and film investments.
Starting a career as an independent filmmaker is exceedingly difficult. Essentially, you’re starting a company from scratch. It may only be a company of one or two to start, but a lot of places start that way.
Due to the fact that your early days of being an independent filmmaker, your early days will be primarily sporadic gig work at odd hours, filmmakers who choose to take a full time day job can often lose out on many opportunities. Even when they do, they're often underpaid, and exposure doesn't pay the rent.
Independant film producers are forced to wear many hats. We have to be marketers, fundraisers, public personas, therapists, mediators, accountants, negotiators, hustlers, and logistically minded magicians. [Although I know an app to help with that last one.] There are certain backgrounds that help more than others for this multifaceted skill set. There is some variance depending on which type of producer you intend to be, but they all have one thing in common. Every Producer must have a deep understanding of Money, and the incentive systems that enable it to flow between different hands.
Taking a little bit of a break from the visions of the film industry and the direction that it should go in, this week I'll be offering a piece of useful advice for all the producers out there. I should start this by saying that I am NOT a financial planner. I am IN NO WAY qualified to evaluate a security. I am also not qualified to give professional advise as to what stocks to buy, how to manage a portfolio, or anything even remotely related to that information.
In my time at the Institute for International Film Finance and Global Film Ventures, I’ve heard many people speak on various tricks to get Films Financed. One of the single most valuable tools in my arsenal is one that I will share with you now. I will say this was not developed by me, but rather by a speaker for one of my events a while back. I will start by saying that in order to be a producer, you need to understand your competition. Not just in terms of other movies and entertainment that are up against yours in the marketplace, but also how your investment stacks up against other potential investments that High Net Worth Individuals may be considering. This requires that a savvy producer understand the stock market, as it is the most common place where investors keep their money.
There’s an old joke that goes something like this. Three artists move to Los Angeles, a Fine Artist, a poet, and a Filmmaker. The first day they’re in town, they check out the Mann’s Chinese Theater. When they get there, a wave of inspiration overtakes them. The fine artist says, “This is incredible, I have to draw something! Does anyone have a piece of chalk?” Low and behold a random passerby happens to have one, and hands it over. The fine artist does a beautiful rendering on the sidewalk.
Watching this, the poet says, “I’ve had a flash of inspiration, I must write! Does anyone have a pen and paper?” It happens to be a friendly sort of Los Angeles day, and someone hands over a pen and paper. He writes a beautiful Shakespearean sonnet about his friend’s artistry with the chalk.
My name is Ben, I'm an Entrepreneur, Producer's Rep, and Author. I'm the founder of Guerrilla Rep Media, Co-Founder/CMO of ProductionNext, and founder of Producer Foundry. Together, the organizations seek to help make filmmaking a more economically sustainable endeavor. I am dysic, I have capitalization issues, and the blogs are often unedited. opinions all my own.
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