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Hey dude, why does DIY filmmaking suck?

  • Yes Beavis, DIY filmmaking literally does suck.

    Let me tell you about my experience producing Quality of Life.

    Each day, I worked a full-time day job and then put in 4 - 8 hours more on the film at night. I still declared personal bankruptcy during pre-production.

    Then I was fired from my job for focusing on the film too much instead of my work.

    My girlfriend nearly left me since she never saw me.

    My friends stopped returning my calls for fear I'd ask for favors for the film.

    And in the end, the entire "indiewood" film industry basically ignored us. Sundance, the speciality distributors, the major indie film press outlets and of course just about anyone with money couldn't be bothered.

    And that was all before we decided to self-distribute the movie and things really got rough.

    So listen up: DIY filmmaking is not for the faint of heart. It sucks.

« DIY film distribution stealing ideas from DIY music labels | Main | Audition process for indie films »

August 27, 2010

Comments

Matthew Kaufman

As far as the "five stars", I refer you to this other news of the day: http://www.dmwmedia.com/news/2010/08/27/pr-firm-reverb-settles-ftc-over-039fake039-itunes-reviews

Alexander Berberich

PLEASE SAVE MY FILM IN YOUR QUEUE!!

http://www.netflix.com/WiMovie/Bonne_Annee/70140895?strackid=4cde3e6d075df902_0_srl&strkid=1294814509_0_0&trkid=438381

Jerome Courshon

Good post.
I doubt Netflix would take punitive actions against a filmmaker who got legions of people to employ the tactics you suggest, and "retaliate" by not buying the filmmaker's movie. After all, Netflix will assume (and surely has data to back this up) that a % of people queuing a film will end up watching it, and they don't want to piss off a % of customers who are fans of a particular filmmaker (even if this is a filmmaker's first movie).

Netflix is looking to become the gorilla of movie content online. (One could argue they already are, with a subscriber base that now stands at about 17 million subscribers per month.) Thus their recent deals with Epix and others to continue to greatly increase their library of "Watch Now" movies & TV.

So getting one's movie onto Netflix will continue to be relatively easy. Netflix wants to continue to be THE place for hard-to-find films, as well as studio & network product. And those filmmakers utilizing "enhanced" marketing efforts to get Netflix to increase their order of a filmmaker's movie, I believe, only serves Netflix's goals. But to really make a significant difference in the amount of units Netflix will take, one *really* has to get hundreds and hundreds of people to queue the movie. A thousand or more would be the number I would shoot for, initially. Remember, (or for those that don't know), Netflix doesn't pay a lot per DVD. If you're able to get them to order 100 units from you (rather than the typical 10 or 20 for an indie movie without stars), that's *maybe* only $900 or $1000 to you, at best.

While Netflix is an incredible service for the consumer, it has been one of the nails in the coffin to the indie filmmaker's business model, in terms of recouping investment and making money, by the adverse impact Netflix has had on the brick and mortar video stores.

Jerome Courshon
THE SECRETS TO DISTRIBUTION: Get Your Movie Distributed Now
http://www.Distribution.LA

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