Have you noticed a trend in filmmakers making a trailer…?

August 7, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under Mail Bag

Q: Have you noticed a trend in filmmakers making a trailer for their film as a tool to raise money?

Paul C., Minnesota (via the Film Method mail bag)

Go Minnesota!  (OK, now that I’ve gotten that out of the way)

I’m not sure “trend” is the right word, but yes, I have met many filmmakers who find this a viable option for raising money.  With technology being so much more readily available, making trailers or promo videos for a specific project is a great way to show your vision to your investors.  Before this technology boom, people made short films as “calling cards” to show investors and consumers what they were capable of doing.  Now, if you don’t have a short film of the same genre that you’ve already shot or there is something visually specific you want to get across to your investors, shooting a promo video or a trailer is a great way to make sure the investor understands what you can do as well as the specific look and feel of the project you are raising money for.  As I’ve stated above, raising money is one (if not thee) most challenging parts of making a film and if you can stack the deck in your favor and make it so that your project stands out, then by all means go for it!

Episode Seventy-Nine: Writing with Barri Evins

July 13, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under episodes

Our month on writing continues with producer and screenwriting teacher Barri Evins. Barri approaches writing from the producers standpoint: what stories work and what will ultimately sell. Barri discusses having that “big idea” and gives 7 helpful pointers on pitching your idea. Writer Aydrea Walden joins us for the month as well!

Barri Evins- Producer/Screenwriting Teacher

Barri Evins is a successful film producer and a sought after screenwriting teacher.  As a producer, she has sold pitches and specs to Warner Bros., Universal, Fox, Nickelodeon, New Line and HBO.  Barri created BIG IDEAS to give new screenwriters what it takes to achieve their dreams by teaching them techniques she uses with highly paid professionals on big league projects.  The Big Ideas Screenwriting Seminar teaches writers to create ideas that ignite industry interest and gives writers revolutionary tools for completing a successful screenplay faster than ever before.  The seminar also includes Barri’s mentorship for a year.  Learn about upcoming seminars, bringing the Big Ideas Seminar to your hometown or get a free thumbs up or down on your next idea at www.bigbigideas.com.  Find tips and updates at BIG IDEAS for Screenwriters on Facebook.  A BIG IDEAS books is in the works.

Barri’s Website-www.bigbigideas.com

Big Ideas for Screenwriters Facebook Page

Aydrea Walden- Writer

Aydrea has written for The Seattle Times, the Now Write! Screenwriting book series, The Second City Los Angeles, iO West, Hawaii Film Partners, NBC/Universal, Highlander Films, Nickelodeon, and Disney. She also runs the satirical blog, The Oreo Experience–My Life and Times as a Super White Black Person. For more information about Aydrea or to contact her please visit her website at www.theoreoexperience.com

Jenna Edwards- Producer, Film Method Co-Host

For more information about Jenna Edwards please visit the About page. To contact Jenna you can email her at info@film-method.com

Lynda Lopez- Producer

Lynda Lopez started her career in film as a Production Designer working on student films with friends from art school where she was a Graphic Design major. She then went on to assist some very talented Production Designers on studio films while still working in various capacities on short films and indie films. Due to her fascination for all aspects of filmmaking, she has become more involved with the Production side of things working as a Director’s Assistant and Producer.

Lynda is currently working on a charity project for All Hands Volunteers, a non-profit organization that provides hands-on assistance to survivors of natural disasters around the world. For more information about Lynda’s project to help this organization please visit www.hands.org

Episode Seventy-Five: Eve Light Honthaner

June 8, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under episodes

Since the time the Film Method podcast began we have been talking about Eve Light Honthaner and her amazing book The Complete Film Production Handbook! Eve has worked on many films including Titanic, Just Married and Tropic Thunder. She joins us to give some helpful tips for producers for the day that your film finally reaches principal photography. We briefly touch on many topics including working with animals, working with children, using purchase orders and hiring the right people for the job.

Eve Light Honthaner- Producer/Author/Teacher

Eve’s career in the entertainment industry spans many years, primarily in the field of production management.  She’s worked in every capacity from PA to line producer and as a staff production executive, most recently for DreamWorks.  She’s worked on shows budgeted anywhere from $1 – $250 million and on projects that have been shot throughout the U.S. and internationally, including Titanic, Just Married and Tropic Thunder.

She’s the author of The Complete Film Production Handbook and HOLLYWOOD DRIVE: What it Takes to Break in, Hang in & Make it in the Entertainment Industry.  And since 1998, she’s combined her many years of practical experience with a love of teaching to help others succeed in this fiercely competitive business.

In addition to the six-week course she teaches at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts each summer, schedule permitting, she does one- and two-day workshops throughout the country.

Eve’s Website- http://evehonthaner.com

Jenna Edwards- Producer, Film Method Co-Host

For more information about Jenna Edwards please visit the About page.

Producing Sunflowers Website
Burbank International Film Fest

Lynda Lopez- Producer

Lynda Lopez started her career in film as a Production Designer working on student films with friends from art school where she was a Graphic Design major. She then went on to assist some very talented Production Designers on studio films while still working in various capacities on short films and indie films. Due to her fascination for all aspects of filmmaking, she has become more involved with the Production side of things working as a Director’s Assistant and Producer.

Lynda is currently working on a charity project for All Hands Volunteers, a non-profit organization that provides hands-on assistance to survivors of natural disasters around the world. For more information about Lynda’s project to help this organization please visit Film Method’s Facebook page.

For more information on All Hands Volunteers visit their website at http://hands.org/

Support from Start to Finish: Mother’s Red Dress

June 4, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under Support from Start to Finish

Mother’s Red Dress, a tragic love story, is the third feature film in three years for No Restrictions Entertainment, an independent filmmaking partnership between writer/director Edgar Michael Bravo and producer John Paul Rice. The team is known among its fan base and those in the micro-budget indie community for making compelling dramatic films that deal with challenging topics in the realm of social issues.

Over the past four years, they’ve built a strong following starting with their first feature, the critically acclaimed, One Hour Fantasy Girl, (based on a true story) a poignant story of a runaway girl from the mid-west living in Hollywood who works as a no-sex call girl to pursue her dream of investing in real estate. The audience’s strongest reactions came from a majority of women who sympathized with a guarded yet vulnerable young woman making her way through a dangerous world to achieve her goal of financial independence – finding an emotionally engaging female empowerment movie. These reactions propelled the team to partner up with charities and organizations, showing the film in theaters to raise awareness and funds for abused runaways.

Now with their third film just weeks away from a locked picture edit, the team is raising finishing funds for Mother’s Red Dress via Kickstarter – one of the more popular crowd-funding platforms available to filmmakers – and combining the fundraising with charity as 10% of every dollar pledged will be donated to an organization that helps victims of domestic violence and child abuse.

Mother’s Red Dress is the story of a young man, Paul, who leaves home to start a new life after seeing his mother kill her abusive boyfriend and threatens to kill her son if he tells anyone.  Paul moves to a small town in Southern California where he meets Ashley, a young woman who also comes from a broken home yet is unaware of Paul’s troubled past with his mother. Ashley inspires Paul to apply to a local community college. All is going well until Paul gets a call from his mother who is dying of cancer and wants to see him one last time.  She offers to reunite Paul with his estranged father who disappeared during his childhood – his father, wanting to meet and convince Paul he is a changed man. Paul decides to travel back home with Ashley following the next day but the truth of what actually happened in the house and to Paul is waiting for both of them.

Mr. Bravo and Mr. Rice talk about their current crowd funding campaign, effective strategies and more on the Film Method podcast with Cindy Freeman and Jenna Edwards.

To learn more about MOTHER’S RED DRESS and their Kickstarter campaign, click here.

You can also follow the project on Facebook or connect with John Paul Rice on Twitter.

John Paul Rice- Producer

Mr. Rice attended Georgia State University in 1997 with a focus on Business. In 1999, while at college, Mr. Rice was given a rare opportunity to work on Jerry Bruckheimer’s Remember the Titans. Following three months on the film, John directed his studies toward learning the history of cinema. Mr. Rice gained hands-on production experience by working on a handful of micro- budget independent films between courses before moving to Los Angeles January 2001 to pursue a career in film production. By mid 2001, John landed a position at the Los Angeles division of the German distribution company Senator International (which later became Mandate Pictures) lead by industry veteran Joseph Drake (Juno, The Grudge, Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, 30 Days of Night, American Psycho). Under Joe’s mentoring, John developed an interest and dedication to producing feature films. John left Mandate to form No Restrictions Entertainment LLC with filmmaker Edgar Michael Bravo. In 2008, Mr. Rice produced his first feature One Hour Fantasy Girl with Edgar Michael Bravo directing. The following year, he and Mr. Bravo produced the supernatural thriller The Magic Stone, set for release in 2011.

Edgar Michael Bravo- Writer/Director

Latino writer/director Edgar Michael Bravo has explored the residual effects of the North American and Latino culture clash in several of his films. During his studies at the UCLA graduate school of film (MFA, 1993) Mr. Bravo’s film Mi Casa, which dealt with Latino immigrants in L.A., won the grand prize at the A&E national film competition. This prestigious award helped launchhis directorial career and Edgar took on his next challenge:Mi Hermano which was the first drama to deal with the ramifications of AIDS and Latino immigrants. This poignant, edgy film garnered Mr. Bravo a Cine Eagle Award and was broadcast nationally on Univision and PBS. After receiving his Masters of Fine Arts from UCLA with honors, Mr. Bravo wrote and directed the feature I’ll Love You Forever…Tonight, which won national rave reviews including Kevin Thomas (L.A. Times) & Steve Holden (N.Y. Times). The project co-starred Thomas Jane (The Punisher, Dreamcatcher, Boogie Nights). Phaedra released the film nationally. Video distribution was handled by BlockBuster and Hollywood Video. Lila Cazes (producer of Leaving Las Vegas) saw I’ll Love You Forever…Tonight and hired him to complete Venus Rising, a feature that required a re-write and re-shoots. Lila was so pleased with Mr. Bravo’s take on the material, that they hired him to write the feature The Perfect Husband.
Mr. Bravo’s film Mi Hermano was viewed by Columbia-Tri-Star and Telemundo and led to his first directorial stint in television. Mr. Bravo shot an hour long episode of Reyes y Rey (1998), a popular police drama based in a fictional Latino border town. The episode received such high ratings that he was contracted to direct two episodes of their other co-production Angeles, a Latino version of Charlie’s Angels. Edgar’s following project, The Preacher’s Son received a Houston World Fest Award (2000). His next script which he collaborated with another writer The Closing Bell, received a Zide/Perry finalist award (2002) and won the Telluride Indie Fest Award chosen as one of the “best indie scripts (2002).” After reviewing his body of work, the award winning San Francisco writers Bob Vickery and Dale Chase granted Mr. Bravo rights to their stories. The result was the script The Three Stages of Stan produced in 2003. In 2008, Mr. Bravo partnered with producer John Paul Rice on their first HD feature film One Hour Fantasy Girl, set for limited theatrical release in 2010. The following year, the team produced the supernatural thriller The Magic Stone, set for release in 2011. Mr. Bravo’s great dream is to direct his script, The Conquest of Mexico, which depicts the beauty of Mexico before the treachery of Cortez and the European diseases he brought which devastated a highly developed indigenous culture.

Episode Seventy-Four: Costume Designing for Film

June 1, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under episodes

Susan Nininger started out in the field of fine art creating sculpted ceramic pieces and then realized that she liked “sculpting costumes”. Her big break was in the 90′s when she was given the job costuming Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston in The Bodyguard. Susan talks to us about working on that film and she also shares with us exactly what her union says she’s allowed to do as a costume designer. We also learn about some other tasks of the costume department and about what it takes to organize the clothes for a film.

Susan Nininger- Costume Designer

Susan Nininger was raised in the Northeast ‐ Connecticut, Boston, and New York. She began her studies as a Fine Art Student at Rhode Island School of Design. By the time she received her Masters Degree in Seattle in 1976, her work was incorporating a variety of materials ‐sculpted ceramic pieces, found objects and fabrics‐and she, and others, were wearing her ‘Costume Sculpture’. The body of sculptural work that Susan produced during the late 70′s in Seattle displayed a unique and imaginative use of mixed materials, as well as a strong sense of storytelling. Some of the pieces she produced during this time were not wearable, however, they were always about Costume ‐ evoking her deep rooted interest in not only the physicality of garments chosen as costume, but also in the Storytelling Ideas that go into the development of character through Costume Design. She received Scholarship Awards and Grants during this time from the National Endowment for the Arts and other prestigious organizations. Her work was exhibited in both galleries and museums, nationally.

Susan made the transition from working as a Studio Artist to designing Costumes for Stage and Moving Pictures in the late 70′s.  Collaborations with Performance Artists and Choreographers in Seattle, lead to being invited to design costumes for several Stage Productions. Finding that designing costumes fit perfectly with her passion for storytelling, she made the choice to pursue a career as a Costume Designer, and moved to Los Angeles in 1981. Susan’s range of work as a Costume Designer, to date, includes Costume Design for Feature Films, Television, Theatre, and Music Videos. She is perhaps most well known for her Costume Design for The Bodyguard with Whitney Houston and Kevin Costner. She has designed for, and collaborated with, award winning Commercial Directors, and continues to maintain a high profile as an imaginative and prolific Costume Designer. With a continued  interest in Education within the field of Costume Design, Susan is a member of the faculty at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in  downtown Los Angeles, where she teaches in the Film & TV Costume Design Program.  She is a member of the Costume Designers Guild, and served on the CDG Board of Directors from 2005‐2010.

Susan is based in Los Angeles, where she lives with her son.

If you’re looking for a costume designer for your film, please contact Maril Delly at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising. Maril’s email address is mdelly@fidm.edu.

Lynda Lopez- Producer

Lynda Lopez started her career in film as a Production Designer working on student films with friends from art school where she was a Graphic Design major. She then went on to assist some very talented Production Designers on studio films while still working in various capacities on short films and indie films. Due to her fascination for all aspects of filmmaking, she has become more involved with the Production side of things working as a Director’s Assistant and Producer.

Lynda is currently working on a charity project for All Hands Volunteers, a non-profit organization that provides hands-on assistance to survivors of natural disasters around the world. For more information about Lynda’s project to help this organization please visit Film Method’s Facebook page.

For more information on All Hands Volunteers visit their website at http://hands.org/

Jenna Edwards- Producer, Film Method Co-Host

For more information about Jenna Edwards please visit the About page.

Producing Sunflowers Website
Burbank International Film Fest

Episode Seventy-Two: The 2nd A.D.s

May 18, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under episodes

The role of the 2nd A.D. is an extremely important one and is very different from that of the 1st A.D. While the 1st A.D. spends all of his or her time on set, the 2nd A.D. is primarily in the production office, working with the producers to make sure that the production is running smoothly and planning the next day’s shoot. Holden Hume and Meredith Corrado join us to discuss both the 2nd A.D. and the 2nd 2nd A.D. positions in depth and explain how their jobs fit in to the grand scheme of a film production.

Holden Hume- 2nd A.D.

Holden was born in Sterling, Colorado and lived most of his life in Sidney, Nebraska.  He gained a love of film at an early age, watching everything he could, which was at times difficult given the fact that the nearest movie theater was 30 miles away. When the local theater opened back up some years later, Holden began writing movie reviews for the local paper. He later went on to earn his degree in Film and Video studies at the University of Oklahoma. After graduation he moved to LA to pursue a career
in film production. He started out in LA as an intern for a small production company on the back lot of Universal Studios by day, and a night Auditor for a motel on Hollywood Blvd by night (an experience that was about as far removed from small town Nebraska as you can get). Holden’s first industry job was as a PA for 300 dollars a week on a small Horror Movie called DARK RIDE. He and went on to become a 2nd 2nd AD a 2nd AD and eventually a 1st AD for non-union productions Film and Television. He met his wife Meredith Corrado (also an AD), on a film set, and they now have a 1 year old son named Homer. They are both currently ADing, producing and writing. They live in the San Fernando Valley.

To get in touch with Holden or Meredith you can email them at hume8617@yahoo.com

Meredith Corrado- Producer, 2nd 2nd A.D.

I was born in Albany, NY, raised in Mexico, MO, and went to college at Hendrix College in Conway, AR.  After college, I moved to Chicago, IL for a few years, and at some point realized I wanted to make movies.  I volunteered my help at Movieside Film Festival and quickly fell into working on a documentary.  Around the same time, my twin sister was graduating from special effects school and wanted to move to Los Angeles, and here we are.  Finding a job in Los Angeles wasn’t easy, as I found out, you need to know someone.  I went from Production Assistant to Craft Services and eventually up the Assistant Director ladder to now Producing.  With my own production company, Corrado Studios, my husband and I get to work together doing what we love.

Jenna Edwards- Producer, Film Method Co-Host

For more information about Jenna Edwards please visit the About page.

Producing Sunflowers Website
Burbank International Film Fest

Support From Start to Finish with Steve Everson

May 1, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under Support from Start to Finish

This new feature from Film Method will highlight different crowd funding campaigns each month. Producer Steve Everson is our guest blogger this month as we focus on the Indiegogo campaign for his short film A Midsummer Nightmare.

In the early pre-production of Midsummer, our goal was to avoid two pitfalls of many of the short films that we had seen or worked on, in the past. First, we decided it is important that the story have an extremely strong hook that incorporates elements that are new to viewers. The other main pitfall to avoid, as we saw it, was to stifle the film’s creative efforts by attempting the film unprepared.

To address the former, it was decided, rather than create a typical horror film with a faceless killer stalking the cast until the end, the main inspiration is drawn from William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The latter became one of the primary reasons for the crowd funding campaign for A Midsummer Nightmare – The Betrayal.

As fans, we know that the popularity of both the horror and fantasy genres are strong, but the tie-in of Shakespeare opened the door to fans that may not have donated to a horror or fantasy film.

Writer & Director Josh Siegel did a great job with this and really ran wild with the story to create something both scary and fantastical. He put all the characters that you would expect to see in Shakespeare’s play, including King Oberon and Queen Titania of the Fairies’ court, and, of course, the mischievous Puck. But then, we turned the whole story on its ear. (Including an appearance by William Shakespeare.)

The Story: England, 1596. The Brotherhood of St. George uses William Shakespeare to trap the Faerie Court within an enchanted book, sparking a secret war with the pagan Feyists. 250 years later the book is opened and the magical beings are freed in a California forest.

Lord Oberon and Queen Titania are not happy after their long imprisonment, unleashing their wrath upon mankind. Three cowboys fight to survive long enough to stop the vengeful faeries and the murderous prankster called Puck.

Once the film is complete, the film will go on the festival circuit. We have a lot of confidence in its ability to perform and compete in the festivals we have targeted. These include about 30 of the top festivals in the US and Europe that are horror and fantasy themed.

When it has completed its tour, we are working on making the film available for download from a variety of outlets via the Internet (most are still in the preliminary stages) and of course, DVDs will be available with supplemental content including concept art, cast and crew bios and interviews and much more.

On behalf of the entire cast and crew, we would like to invite the listeners of Film Method to join us at any of the following links (hopefully all of the links) to keep updated on the progress of the film, help boost the word of mouth or even throw in a few dollars, if possible.

And thank you so much to Cindy Freeman and everyone at Film-Method.com!

To checkout our crowd funding campaign

Indiegogo:

http://www.indiegogo.com/A-Midsummer-Nightmare

Keep updated with all developments

The Blog:

http://midsummerfilm.blogspot.com/

Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/AMidsummerNightmare

Twitter:

@midsummerfilm

A Midsummer Nightmare – The Betrayal

Produced by Steve Everson, L. Jeffrey Moore and Joshua Siegel

Steve Everson- Producer


Steve holds a degree in Communication Design, Media Arts from CSU, Chico. He spent three years as a commercial producer for Charter Media. Following that, Steve was hired as the Cinematographer and a Post Producing Consultant for the feature film Bloodwood Cannibals. The next year, he was hired as a Assistant Director and Co-Producer on the feature film Lesser Miracles. As a MFA student at the Academy of Art, Steve has served as a Producer twelve short films and a music video.

Episode Sixty-Nine: Producing Challenges Big Budgets Vs. Small

April 27, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under episodes

Having unlimited resources at your disposal while making a movie doesn’t mean that you’ll make a great movie, but it sure helps. What luxuries do you have on a larger budget production? What must you sacrifice to make a smaller budget work? Producer Scott Fort joins us to discuss what it’s like to make features ranging from half a million dollars to 5 million dollars. In this episode we also kick off our new feature Support: From Start to Finish, in which we’ll highlight a different crowd funding campaign every month. Steve Everson joins us this month to talk about the Indigogo campaign for his film A Midsummer Nightmare.

Scott Fort- Producer


Robert Scott Fort has been a working professional in the film industry for over 20 years.  During the first stage of his career, Mr. Fort worked as a Director of Development at Walt Disney Studios for Stuart Gordon, the director of RE-ANIMATOR, developing projects such as DYNOTOPIA, AMERICAN PSYCHO and the sequel to HONEY I SHRUNK THE KIDS.  He also worked with Indie film producer David Lancaster on various Showtime projects, and later with writer/producer, Jim Kouf, also at Walt Disney Studios.

Mr. Fort began working in physical production as a Production Coordinator and Production Manager for Full Moon Pictures, where he supervised over 25 low budget horror films.  From there Mr. Fort worked on numerous television pilots and movies of the week at such studios as Warner Bros, Paramount Pictures, Sony Television, Showtime and Lifetime.

Mr. Fort has also worked as a UPM or Line Producer on numerous independent features with directors such as: Ken Loach, Christopher Coppola, Andy Fleming and Joe Dante.  He has worked in locations as diverse as Utah, Arizona, Missouri, Mississipi, New Mexico, Louisiana, Texas and North Carolina, and has developed an expertise in putting together budget scenarios for film financing packages.

Most recently Mr. Fort Line Produced THE COVER UP based on an infamous Iowa crime case and directed by Sundance winning director, Brian Jun, and Production Managed ACT OF VALOR for Legendary Pictures slated for release in 2011.  He recently Line Produced the teen action thriller, BIG BAD for Eye Vox Entertainment, and is currently prepping a psychological thriller titled CHAINED to be directed by Jennifer Lynch.

Mr. Fort is an alumnus of California State University of Fullerton, graduating with a degree in Communications, with an emphasis in TV & Film. He is a member of the Producer’s Guild of America.

Credits include: THE THACKER CASE, MARK BURNETTE’S GOLD RUSH, KISS KISS BANG BANG, WAITRESS, and LOVE SPRING.

Jenna Edwards- Producer

Jenna Edwards began her film career in Minnesota where she was signed on as talent with Easter Hailey. Quickly after being signed Edwards was hired by the agency as a full time employee giving her a head-start on her Hollywood education. After two years of rising through the Minnesota film community Edwards made the move to Los Angeles.

Soon after Edwards moved to Los Angeles she was hired by agent Jamie Ferrar. It was while Edwards was working for Ferrar that she developed an interest in the casting process. Before long she had moved from talent agencies to working in casting with such industry leaders as; Sally Steiner (Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Boy Meets World), Barbie Block (Jonas, Pepper Dennis) and Allison Jones (Superbad, The Office).

During this time Edwards was also able to gain valuable production experience working with studios like Disney, MTV, FOX and CBS.

After several years of successfully navigating her career through the Hollywood studio system Edwards made the leap to independent film with her first feature April Showers and has since successfully produced 4 feature films as well as co-hosting the Film Method podcast and teaching producing classes at New York Film Academy.

After her success with April Showers Edwards formed Mattoid Entertainment with partners Jeremy McGovern and Andrew Robinson where they produced the first ever made-for-internet movie, In the Darkness, which premiered on Hulu.com. Mattoid has recently made the leap to distribution, where they have acquired three feature documentaries to be released in 2011.  The first, Adopting Haiti premiered as the #1 documentary on Hulu.com.

Aside from continuing to work at Mattoid, Jenna is busy working on budgets for several independent films, producing 2 feature films and developing projects for television as well as teaching producing at New York Film Academy.

Producing Sunflowers Website

Episode Sixty-Seven: Communicating Your Vision

March 30, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under episodes

When you arrive on set that first day, you want to make sure that your creative team has a plan in place. The goal is to take the vision that you’ve fleshed out and communicate that to your crew to execute the game plan in order to have a successful shoot! DP Geoff Goodloe and Director Ace Underhill join us to talk about their working relationship and also about the importance of having a plan in place before the first day of production.

Geoff Goodloe- Director of Photography

Geoff is a DP and Camera Operator from San Diego. While having only been in the business for 5 years, Geoff has worked on hundreds of productions, ranging from music videos and shorts to multi million dollar feature films. He attributes his success to being adaptable, and forging through when others would have walked away. Geoff currently resides in Los Angeles, but his work takes him around the country.

Geoff’s Facebook Page

Ace Underhill- Director

Ace Underhill has worked in the film and television industry for over 13 years, blending extensive technical knowledge with an award-winning artistic edge.  He founded Brilliant Screen Studios, a full service film & television studio as well as a feature film production company.  He has served on the San Diego Filmmakers Board of Directors and was part of the Advisory Group to the San Diego Film Commission.  Brilliant Screen also supplies productions of all sizes with crew, consultation, and equipment. Brilliant Screen Studios

Ace’s Facebook Page

Jenna Edwards- Producer

Jenna Edwards began her film career in Minnesota where she was signed on as talent with Easter Hailey. Quickly after being signed Edwards was hired by the agency as a full time employee giving her a head-start on her Hollywood education. After two years of rising through the Minnesota film community Edwards made the move to Los Angeles.

Soon after Edwards moved to Los Angeles she was hired by agent Jamie Ferrar. It was while Edwards was working for Ferrar that she developed an interest in the casting process. Before long she had moved from talent agencies to working in casting with such industry leaders as; Sally Steiner (Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Boy Meets World), Barbie Block (Jonas, Pepper Dennis) and Allison Jones (Superbad, The Office).

During this time Edwards was also able to gain valuable production experience working with studios like Disney, MTV, FOX and CBS.

After several years of successfully navigating her career through the Hollywood studio system Edwards made the leap to independent film with her first feature April Showers and has since successfully produced 4 feature films as well as co-hosting the Film Method podcast and teaching producing classes at New York Film Academy.

After her success with April Showers Edwards formed Mattoid Entertainment with partners Jeremy McGovern and Andrew Robinson where they produced the first ever made-for-internet movie, In the Darkness, which premiered on Hulu.com. Mattoid has recently made the leap to distribution, where they have acquired three feature documentaries to be released in 2011.  The first, Adopting Haiti premiered as the #1 documentary on Hulu.com.

Aside from continuing to work at Mattoid, Jenna is busy working on budgets for several independent films, producing 2 feature films and developing projects for television as well as teaching producing at New York Film Academy.

Mattoid Entertainment Website

Producing Sunflowers Website

Guest Blogging Series with Jason Brubaker: How To Sell Your Movie Checklist

January 10, 2011 by cindy  
Filed under news

If you’ve made a feature film, congratulations! As an independent filmmaker, you’ve just accomplished a feat that many find impossible. You’ve put together a cast and crew, refined your script, found some financing and in the process, you’ve even figured out how to ignore all your significant other’s not-so-subtle hints that a career selling life insurance wouldn’t be that bad.

But behind all the excitement, you and I both know there is one nagging question on your mind. And it is the same question asked by every independent feature filmmaker. You’re wondering: “How am I going to sell this thing?”

That is a good question. And if you’re crossing your fingers for a huge paycheck and a three-picture Hollywood deal, what I’m about to tell you is going to be very different than what you had hoped for.

Thanks to technology, any person with a thousand dollars can grab an HD camera and create a backyard indie. And while this does not guarantee quality, it does create a market flooded with cheaply produced movies. Couple this with a decline in traditional sales channels and your odds of finding a profitable deal have become increasingly challenging.

For most filmmakers, this revelation comes as a shock. After all the work you put into making your movie project a reality, the prospect of putting a no-deal DVD onto a bookshelf and failing to get a return on investment is discouraging. And if it wasn’t for the internet, I’d probably tell you that a career selling life insurance wouldn’t be too bad.

But I have good news! Like you, our first feature was met with empty distribution promises and crappy deals. So by necessity, we started selling our title on Amazon as both a physical DVD and a video on demand download. At first, none of the producers liked that idea. I mean, even if a traditional deal sucks, at least there is still validation of seeing your title on the shelves at the local video store…

Then we made our first sale. We thought it was an anomaly. How could we possibly make money with our movie? We had no stars. We had no formal distribution. And most people on earth had never heard of our title (including you.) But then we made another sale… And then a third… And then a dozen…

That was 2006. Since that time, our movie has sold in ways we never imagined. As a result, every four months I get a nice check. And while it’s not enough money to buy my retirement, I can’t complain.

This success was enough to convince me that making money as an indie filmmaker is no longer about the BIG pay day. These days filmmakers need to create good work, find their target audience and focus on selling movies consistently over time. As a result, I now believe the modern moviemaking model is to eventually create multiple streams of movie income.

For many filmmakers, this sort of talk might be crazy.

Think about it. In years past, filmmakers only self distributed their movies when they had to. It wasn’t a choice! But these days, filmmakers can choose to self-distribute, because 9 times out of 10, making your title available on Amazon and iTunes and other popular VOD marketplaces can potentially pay more than a traditional deal. Because a deal that pays zero is not a deal. (Of course I’m expressing my opinion.)

The following “How To Sell Your Movie” checklist will provide you with a broad overview of how to market and sell your movie without the middle-man.

This checklist should be considered a good start – but many of you will want further information. For that, check out: www.howtosellyourmovie.com

Wherever I thought it would help, I’ve mentioned partner companies and affiliates. This means, if you follow my suggestions and use one of these services, I’ll get a commission. The folks I mention are good people. But you are welcome to ignore my links at will. I won’t be upset. As with all things, take what works for you and ignore the rest.

That said, let’s get started!

How To Sell Your Movie Checklist:

1. Create a website specific to your movie. Go to www.moviesitehost.com and grab hosting for your site and reserve your domain name there. When you purchase your hosting, a domain name is usually included in the purchase price.

2. Branding is the marketing equivalent of matching your belt with your shoes. Don’t make your marketing complicated. Make sure your colors, logos, posters and fonts are consistent.

3. Most filmmakers make a crazy website with all sorts of bells and whistles. Your website should be simple. You should have a trailer, an about page, a buy now button, links to your social networks and an audience list.

4. Out of everything I mention, getting people onto your audience list is most important. An audience list will allow you to collect a name and email address of your visitor. To build an opt-in list, which is FREE for the first 500 subscribers, check out: http://www.aweber.com/

5. Take a moment to think about your target audience. Hopefully you have a marketable hook for your movie, and a plan for reaching your target demographic. If not, figure it out!

6. Get your movie selling as a Video on Demand rental and download. To do this, upload your movie to the many VOD marketplaces, such as iTunes, Amazon and NetFlix. For an easy way to accomplish this, try www.moviesalestool.com

7. You can sell DVDs too. Amazon’s Create Space makes this easy. And even though it’s more expensive, I advise you to stay out of the shipping business. Let CS manufacture your DVDs and fulfill your orders on demand. This way, you can focus on increasing your sales, as well as your next movie projects. Not shipping.

8. Your trailer is your sales tool. Upload your trailer to YouTube as well as other, popular video sites. Make sure your trailer mentions your website. Put your focus on optimizing YouTube. Why? Because YouTube is both a social network and the second largest search engine on earth (also owned by Google.) It’s worth it!

9. Write press releases related to the availability of your movie. Include back links to your site. Send the release out via one of the online press release submission sites. In addition to this, don’t be afraid to call magazine editors and journalists who write for your target audience. As they say, if you don’t ask – you don’t get!

10. Join online forums related to your target market. Create a profile, complete with a signature link to your website. Now, whenever you join a conversation, you’ll spread your links.

11. Just because you’re in a forum doesn’t mean people care about you or your movie. If you join conversations without adding value – or if you become one of those spam happy people who talk about your movie and fail to add value to the discussion, you will be seen as a spammer.

12. If the idea of contributing to forum conversations annoys you, then just pay for advertising on the site. The whole point is to increase awareness of your movie and get prospective audience members to your site.

13. Create a Facebook page, a Twitter account and join the popular social networking sites. Again, you’ll want to build a fan base for your movie. And to manage it, try www.ping.fm This tool allows you to update all your social networking sites at once, which is cool!

14. The purpose of using social networks is to connect with your target market, spread word about your movie and once again, lead people off the networks and onto your Audience list.

15. The reason you can not rely solely on social networking for your audience list, is because many of those sites have gone out of vogue. I lost 10K “friends” on one of them. As a result, I estimate this tip is worth $100,000.00.

16. Additionally, have your webmaster put a button on your website so people can tweet, bookmark, and share your movie website with friends on their social networking sites. (Can you please click the tweet button at the top of this article?)

17. If you have the budget, purchase some offline advertising in publications related to your movie. To find related publications, go to a book store and look for magazines. Also, try Google.

18. All of these methods are intended to get people back to your website. The purpose of your site is to get people to watch your movie trailer and click the BUY NOW button. Anything that distracts these visitors must go!

19. You’ll soon realize that most people will not buy your movie on their first visit to your website. If they don’t click, then at least try to get them to opt into your audience list. Then you have a chance of getting them to buy later.

22. Out of all the people who click the BUY NOW button, many won’t buy. But some will!

23. Consider using that money to purchase more advertising and then repeat the cycle. The goal is to keep investing and reinvesting the money until you produce a self sustaining machine.

24. Sales will tend to level off after a few years. This is the normal. When this happens, find some other filmmakers with a movie geared towards the same target audience. Offer to promote their movie to your audience list. If these other filmmakers have an audience list too, ask them to promote your movie. Be willing to pay them a cut of your profits.

25. Time for your next project. But unlike before, you’ll have a strong mailing list at your disposal. And as a result, you can now ask yourself the following magical questions: “How many VOD downloads do I have to sell to recoup my investment? And how am I going to sell them?” Answer those questions, and you’ll also be talking the talk with your investors.

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Jason Brubaker (IMDB) is a Hollywood based Independent Motion Picture Producer and an expert in Video On Demand distribution. He is focused on helping YOU make, market and sell movies more easily by growing your fan base, building buzz and creating community around your title.

You can find more of Jason Brubaker’s articles at www.filmmakingstuff.com

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