I have said it many times before but there is never enough time to prepare. This is doubly true if you are over ambitious and trying to prep more than one project. That being said I think a number of things have been accomplished that I can be proud of.
One of the first things to be wary of is the time it takes for certain aspects of your trip to come to fruition. These is obvious for film content but things people tend to forget are printed resources and their windows for professional turnaround and also the time that various forms of correspondence takes.
In hind site I wish that I had built in more time for publicity (or had the money to hire a publicist) and had more time to dedicate to social media (or found an intern) but those were always expected areas of concern for me.
We have poster and flyers, one sheets for the AFM (for both Crackheads and Sex with an Alien) and unique videos created for both projects, all of which requires significant planning.
I think for me serious planning for this trip started in August, so that did not leave a lot of time to achieve everything. You really need to priorities what needs to be done as I have learned the hard way time and again that everything takes more time then expected. That being said it can still be exciting work and sleep is for the dead so you just power on.
Of course all the planning in the world cannot prepare you for the unexpected and there is always some of that, so if you can try to build in some extra time that would be best (but let’s face it that is always close to impossible.
Obviously planning for a market and for a festival is totally different. The festival is more about reaching out to people and focusing on marketing. The market is about focusing on the tools required to sell the film and investigating the possible companies that you can approach and preparing a pitch.
In a nutshell the preparations centered around:
– Identifying niche audiences and potential champions
– Creating specific content (both print and video)
– create pitch deck for projects identifying hooks, selling points and companies that maybe interested
– create resources (screeners, trailers, print materials etc)
– start networking for meetings (much of this I will still be doing in the lead up to the market)
It may not seem like much but it is a lot of work. All worth it as I am sitting in the plane on my way to Austin. My fourth trip to the States and my first time visiting somewhere other than LA. Still lots more work to be done when I land, and lots more exciting news to share I am sure.