A Swift Look at 7 Ways to Finance a Film Without Completely Selling Your Soul

 

"It's like Hal says, it's not the money, it's the money." -Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)

 

  When Chris and I decided that we were going to make movies together, we knew that it was going to be a challenge, but we were both up for it.  We've spent the better part of four years researching, trying to absorb as much information as possible.  

 Just some light reading. 

Just some light reading. 

We've studied story principles, structure, film techniques, business, marketing, color use, psychology, WHATEVER we could get our hands on.  We've read biographies and how-to books galore.  YouTube videos and blogs are a part of our daily routine. We've watched more movies than we could name.  We've attended workshops and panels and now we are at the point of JUST DO IT ALREADY!

So we are.  Our screenplay for Sydney, Arizona is becoming an actuality, not just an idea.  As we are moving right along, we want to keep you updated and share some of the information we've learned so you can help track our progress. We are super excited by all this and we want to share it with you.

So while Chris is writing away and I'm , our next step is to acquire financing to help with production costs.  In other words: 

SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!  -Cuba Gooding, Jr  (Jerry Maguire)

 

 In order to find funding, we needed to set a budget.  We've studied films with all sorts of budgets, learning from their successes and mistakes, how they made it work for them.  There are so many things to account for when planning the budget.  There are: 

* Pre-Production costs like auditions and copyrights and printing scripts.

* Production costs such as paying the cast and crew, equipment, and insurance 

* Post-Production costs including editing, color grading, and festival application fees.

Not to mention coffee.  Can not forget the coffee.   

When we were researching financing, we found some really interesting options.  Here's a brief look at what we learned: 

1. Grants

Looking for movie funding is just like applying for financial aid for school, except instead of a degree with our names on it, there's a film with our names in the credits.  Like looking for school aid, it requires a lot of patience and research to see what we are eligible for.  Art grants are incredibly niche, but there are several resources out there.

 

2. Investors 

Film Investors like to have a little more say than just an regular donor. An investor's main goal is to make a profit, so usually their money will come out of any money brought in first, and that's not even including a back end deal (a percentage of any profit).  That's not a bad thing- the point of any business investment is to make a profit, and this is definitely a business.  We want to look into investors for additional funding after production is done, to help with post production and festival submissions.

  

3. Lottery Ticket

You never know....

 

4. Loans

Again, it's like applying for school aid or buying a house.  As Chris says, he's rather be in debt for a movie that he's proud of than a piece of paper that shows he's a good boy.  I completely agree.  

 

5. Credit Cards

Not necessarily our favorite option, but it's a time-honored tradition for indie filmmakers.  

 

 

6. Working Hard For the Money

Working and saving.  That's where the photography comes in.  So every time you have a session with us or get a friend to try us out, you are helping fund a film.   

 

7. Crowd-funding

  Many filmmakers have been successful , because donors can give what they want.  There's usually a little incentive for the donors as well.  Friends, family, and even complete strangers have the opportunity to help support filmmakers from all over the world.    

 Saving our pennies! 

Saving our pennies! 

 

So for the next few weeks, our focus, I mean MY focus will be on finding the right methods for us. (Chris is helping, but he is a busy little writer bee)  If you know of any other outlets to look into, let us know!  We greatly appreciate any support we receive, whether it's connecting us with people you think might be able to help us, sharing our posts to other people, recommending us for sessions.  If you know of any other outlets to look into, let us know!