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August 14, 2008

INDIE FILMS CRISIS? IT'S BULLSH*T! Stop the whining and Self-distribute

Selfdistribution

A few posts ago I started smirking while I was reading all this news about how indie films are in crisis, the reason is simple, now more than ever, the Guerrilla Fillmmaker has all the weapons to have a prolific career and live out of making films. Not that I'm happy about the Indie Film future, I just think it's a storm in a glass of water. A few years ago when all the big studios started to open independent divisions (Fox Searchlight, Warner Independent, Focus Features...) everybody was saying how the independent films were going down since they were not independent anymore, they were studio controlled too. Now that all that divisions are closing, there's another crisis because they are closing them?

Independent Films are going to survive this one too, for a simple reason, smart people love indie films and smart people are always to be around. Now Indie producers, do you want to suffer your crisis because you cannot get the $3 millions to produce your feature? Well that's when I smile, because we only need 30 K to produce a feature and if you know how to move it, you will recoup that money relatively fast and will be able to launch your career and live out of writing and making films in 18 months... yes! is that simple: if you have talent, you write an amazing script, you make a fantastic Guerrilla Film, you make a great Guerrilla Marketing Campaign, like the one this guy did: he took the white pages from his town and start looking for people called Roger Ebert, he found 3 people, he sent his movie to this people and he asked if they enjoy it, one out of three loved it, so he used a quote from this Roger Ebert guy to market his self-distributed DVD... I cannot mention his name, he's post-producing his second feature and he wants to do this again... now a regular first time independent film director, lucky enough, can achieve this (I'm talking about the first project) in 5 years, aprox, since the first draft of the script till recouping the costs of the film, you do the math. No wonder why great storytellers such as  Martin Scorsese, John Sayles, Spike Lee, Sam Raimi, Jim Jarmusch, Christopher Nolan,  Kevin Smith, Darren Aronofsky, Richard Linklater and Robert Rodriguez, just to mention a few, started their career as Guerrilla Filmmakers.

Now there are new ways of distribution and the DIY distribution it's been and it is always there. Mark Johnson, producer of the Sundance hit Ballast, decided to self-distribute this film, because, even with the Best Cinematography and Best Director Awards in Sundance 2008, he didn't get offers from distributors good enough to cover the cost of the production.

  • "I thought that, at the end of the day, quality would win," Johnson says. "We would like to think that if something is made well, it ought to be able to pay for itself."

This movie was made for almost a million dollars, I like to believe that if you have something with the same quality / story, made with 90 K, you're going to be able to sell it and recoup the costs of production. Right now Johnson and first time filmmaker Lance Hammer are distributing the film city by city, I hope they can recoup the money, but as now, I couldn't find an official website or a trailer, two tools that should be online now, so will see.

You want to D.I.Y. but you don't know how to start, you can go to Stacey Parks' Film Specific to get a general idea and for $67 you get an amazing insight with Self Distribution Starter Kit.

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"he took the white pages from his town and start looking for people called Roger Ebert, he found 3 people, he sent his movie to this people and he asked if they enjoy it, one out of three loved it, so he used a quote from this Roger Ebert guy to market his self-distributed DVD."

Cute, but it was done by a now-deceased Broadway producer back in the 60's for a play called Subways Are For Sleeping. He ran an ad with quotes from people with the same name as NYC newspaper theater critics.

I just remembered the producer's name: David Merrick.

Check out the response to our Self-Marketing, Self-Promotion, in your face, waiting for no-one filmmaking King Kong Style...

A comment from another blog:

" The whole thing seems to be an experiment in (2+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
MaskedKat, marketgeek

self-promotion.

So. . .

since the WOT rater rates his site as unsatisfactory, try mine which, while pretty unsatisfactory, has free music and does have Lou in the title.

More interesting than John McCain's YouTube videos.

by Crashing Vor on Sun Jul 27, 2008 at 12:31:52 PM PDT"


An excerpt from: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2008/7/27/141823/443/548/557787

Thanks for 'getting it'.
To find out more who Luis Moro is go to: www.MoroFilms.com

Hey Cranky Media Guy, good to know that the Guerrilla Marketing Campaign come from Theater and the 60's... Let's giving him the right credit then and let's thinking and sharing more Guerrilla Marketing Ideas that can work for different movies as well. I'm working on a post with some resources about that, so keep visiting.


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