Business plan guide questions for film

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Business plan guide questions for film

If you think shooting your film was tough, just wait until Film Distributors get their hands on you.

business plan guide questions for film

Distributors are in the game to profit from films that are easy to sell, not to nurture filmmakers. An independent film will languish on the shelf indefinitely if it is not marketable.

Self-distribution platforms allow filmmakers to distribute their films independently, bypassing traditional distributors. It may seem like a tedious task, but without some form of distribution, your film will languish on the shelf forever.

This article will cover the independent film distribution options that are generally available to independent filmmakers. Finding a reputable independent film distributor The ideal situation was and still is to sign a distribution deal with a reputable film distributor who will then take care of all the possible distribution channels: In the ideal situation, the distributor pays the filmmaker a decent advance and they then split the revenues after the distributor has recouped costs this is known as Gross Adjusted Deal.

Conversely, with the First Dollar Split deal, in which the distributor and filmmaker do a split with no advance payment, the distributor is not under as much pressure to do anything with the film and may completely waste your time and leave the film on the shelf until the contract expires and you manage to snatch it back.

This was extremely hard to obtain before the recession and is now all but impossible. Of course they will want to see the film and all the publicity material, to determine whether the film is marketable.

Quality You Can Trust

If your independent film is not marketable, nobody will distribute it, for the simple reason that there is no money to be made from it. If people do not think they can make money off your film, they will leave it on the shelf without mercy.

This is probably something worth considering when preparing your feature film, but if you have completed your film and are seeking distribution, it is pretty much too late to do anything about that, although radical re-editing can sometimes make a film more marketable.

Is this the end of your film? The answer is no. For example, with CreateSpace you can submit your film and all the artwork electronically — completely free — and your film will be available for sale as professionally-made DVDs on Amazon.

CreateSpace is part of Amazon. There are no start-up fees for filmmakers and it is guaranteed and instantaneous distribution. Sure, we all want to see our films on the big screen, but when all else fails, self-distribution will allow your film to be bought by as many people as are willing to watch it.

Depending on how popular your film is, you may even make a good profit! Independent film self-distribution is now unquestionably the way forward for the overwhelming majority of small independent films.

Even before the massive economic recession, it was next to impossible to secure meaningful distribution for small independent films. The truth is that there is nothing intrinsically wrong with cheap mediocre independent films: Many people enjoy scruffy independent feature films if they are quirky and enjoyable!

However, the problem with these films is that they are impossible to distribute profitably via traditional means cinemas, television. For this reason, independent film self-distribution was the only option for niche independent feature films.

business plan guide questions for film

When all was said and done, my guess is that very few of these feature films were seen by more than people, and did not make their money back, let alone make a profit. The filmmakers learned valuable lessons in filmmaking and the business of films, but it was not a viable business by any stretch of the imagination.

The reason for the lack of economic viability of independent feature films was simply that, no matter how cheaply they were distributed, the costs always exceeded the revenues.

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Finding a reputable independent film distributor

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