Producer Ted Hope came up with 38 reasons he feels the Indie-Film “scene” is under stress. The points he raises are very good and not wanting to become pessimsitic (it’s too early in my career) I think there is light at the end of the tunnel. However, coming from a realistic, positivist generation feel that we should listen to those offering advice and keep these things in mind when making our own films.
There are certainly problems we face as film makers today. Besides the over abundance and accessibility ANYONE has to call themselves film makers (I wonder if it was like this in the 80’s with stockbrokers?) there are also no working business models that satisfy “The Money” to invest in our new distribution methods. But, democracy takes time and living in a country with a fledgling democracy I can tell you that it’s more-difficult than it is easy, if you catch my drift. All we have to go on is the passion we had to start off and a sh*t-hot script. The stories we tell are indubitably part of historical record and mark social spaces in our history. Society will never be able to forget the films we have made because they are part of an era and an age. They are more true to history than textbooks if you believe in the anecdote that history is written by the conqueror. That makes what we do more than entertainment even though that is what we pitch in the present. Hoeraa! and all the other psych terms you use to get up in the morning to get behind (or in front) of that camera!
*Distrib’s abandonment (and lack of development) of community-building marketing approaches for specialized releases (which reduces appeal for a group activity i.e. the theatrical experience).
*Distrib’s failure to embrace limited streaming of features for audience building.
*Reliance on large marketing spend release model restricts content to broad subjects (which decreases films’ distinction in marketplace) and reduces ability to focus on pre-aggregated niche audiences.
*Lack of media literacy/education programs that help audience to recognize they need to begin to chose what they see vs. just impulse buy.
*Threat of piracy makes library value of titles unstable, which in turn limits investment in content companies and reduces acquisition prices, which in turn reduces budgets, which in turn limits the options for content — so everybody loses.
*No new business model for internet exploitation at a level that can justify reasonable film budgets.
*Emphasis on single pictures for filmmakers vs. ongoing conversation with fans has lead to a neglect of content that helps audiences bridge gaps between films and that would prevent each new film to be a reinvention of the wheel for audience building.
*Lack of marketing/distribution knowledge by filmmakers limits DIY success.
*Filmmakers still believe that festivals are first and foremost markets and not media launches.
*The ego-driven approach to filmmaking vs. one of true collaboration generally yields lower quality of films and greater dissatisfaction amongst all participants.
To read all 38 reasons go here please…