In this post we explore the aspects generally considered the Producer’s territory. At times I found that most break downs of a shoot covered all the cool fun aspects but never the nitty gritty of how things got made. Because I didn’t just want to generate a ramble for this post I got Aliesha, an upcoming Producer and our Production Assistant on the film to write questions for me that other people in her position would be keen to hear the answers to. I hope this helps…
If you are anything like me the the idea of going to events for the purpose of talking to strangers can be daunting. The only way to get over this is to do it and to do it often. In these situations I have found that it is better to be shy than arrogant and there are so many amazing people in this industry that you will hardly ever be left alone for long.
In this industry we all tend to work in small groups or alone for a lot of the time, but meeting new people is crucial both in terms of finding crew as well as finding people to help make your projects happen.
If you have a friend to go with who is there for similar reasons it makes things much easier, but even if you don’t these are some of the things I have discovered that have helped me get through the awkwardness over the years.
Film Censorship is covered in The Films, Videos, and Publications Act 1993, last updated in 2005 (Office of Film and Literature Classification, 2011). This legislation will determine the audience size your film can access by restricting possible younger viewers due to objectionable material (Wilson, 2007). Further campaigns for changes in the legislation have continued. Recent possible changes that could affect include all films featuring smoking R18 (Sharma, 2011) – already declared impractical by researchers (Gale, et al., 2006), but if enforced would enforce an R18 rating on many films including a large number of classic pictures – and making it cheaper to receive classification for suppliers (Croot, 2010).
Having had an awesome night celebrating the first screening of Crackheads on the Friday we were looking forward to another day at the festival, which included the awards luncheon, Tim’s panel, a talk from Robert Rodriguez, a packaging seminar and the screening of a film filled with kiwi talent. Another jam packed and interesting day…
The trip to Austin was obviously long. I was lucky that my flight to LA was mostly empty so I had a row to myself and the stopover in LA felt really short. By the time I arrived in Austin though I was still exhausted. Waking up in Austin to beautiful weather was amazing. Austin, like Auckland, is incredibly spread out so you can’t walk everywhere. Have yet to try the public transport but the taxis are cheaper than Auckland.
It was the day before the festival started so Tim (director of Crackheads) and I knew that we had to start getting out and marketing our film and making a plan for the festival – all while also sorting out the NZ premiere of the film.
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.
With traditional distribution options disappearing for filmmakers it is no longer possible for independent filmmakers to think that someone else will devise their marketing strategy. Just as you create a great screenplay for your film which you then breakdown and storyboard before shooting, having a marketing plan thought out gives you a way to communicate to others the way that you will reach your audience. In this post I will outline the aspects of marketing planning that I found useful for Crackheads.
Filmmaking continues to be a high-risk investment, but one that can potentially be extremely lucrative. There are more films are being made now than ever before due to technological advances in camera and editing equipment making filmmaking accessible to more people.
In New Zealand film distribution and exhibition brought in $348 million in 2011, a 6% increase from 2010. Producers who sold films, in New Zealand and internationally, generated $116 million (Statistics New Zealand, 2012). This proves that although competitive there is still an opportunity for independent films to compete in the marketplace.
As you may, or may not be aware, I have been working on a film called ‘Crackheads’. The film can be as controversial as it sounds, which makes it a marketing dream. Well dream in the sense that a number of elements are easy to define, such as using crack, P, meth – whatever you like to call it – as a large part of the marketing activities, and that by exploiting these elements we are sure to gain some attention…
Before we get ahead of ourselves I thought I would go through some of the elements of marketing planning for films that I believe are crucial.