Why is everyone else complaining?

I was reading this blogpost linked on some other film marketing blog I read...

It's just so odd... all these "independent" filmmakers complaining and talking how their opportunities are going away in this new digital world... well I have something to say to them all.... PEAS OUT! Haha... We are at probably the most exciting and interesting time for media makers right now and if you REALLY been doing your best for a long time and you still can't find an audience for your film or anyone who is interested in it... well then you and what you make probably sux0rs... thats the truth no one wants to hear BUT thats the way it is in this new world... you can't pretend... the audience either loves it, hates it or the WORST OF ALL they don't remember it at all... there's no faking because with the internet and the people on it well ummm... they are honest... its terrifying to a lot of filmmakers I talk to but its like if you can't stand the heat then DAMN you shouldn't be at the workstation ^ ^

You must walk the line between making whatever the fuck you want while somehow keeping your ear to the ground making something relevant to todays quickly adapting and morphing audience... NO ONE and NO STUDIO is going to back you with tons of P & A to beat peoples eyeballs into submission convincing them that you are somehow relevant... the majors can and still will do this and most everyone else will DIE..... Survival of the fittest it is...

I meet all these "filmmakers" who want to be "directors" or consider themself that or whatever... but without a crew, budget and all that...they are helpless...they dont make anything at all.. they are waiting for some perfect situation to come about so they can do the one or two things they know how to do and make a film... that may work in Hollywood but if you want to make your own films that shit isn't gonna cut it homieS...

I made most of my live action films in garages, on the street or where ever with who ever I could get and I shot with any camera I could get etc.. you get the point... You either have the desire and passion or you don't and if you don't your never going to survive in tomorrows world of independent film... and the audience doesn't give a fuck what you shot your film on or where or how or whatever... its the film that matters... lately all these people have been prematurely ejaculating about the RED camera... its like just because you have 4000 pixels of HORizontal resolution somehow now your Kubrick eh? And the audience is just going to be in awe of your film because...of the camera you shot in on??

Its actually very refreshing when you come to the realization that the audience doesn't care if you were poor as fuck living in a slum and like you shot your stop motion film on a polaroid and like went to Kinko's to scan them in and digitize them or whatever... ALL THAT MATTERS IS WHATS ON SCREEN... THE FILM... now how/why/when/where/who with....

So what would most hipster independent filmmaker types do if they got $50,000? Probably rent some artsy loft to live in and buy some fancy camera and waste the rest on cigarettes and "research" trips to foreign countries... ME...I'd live in a fuckin hole, eat sardines, buy a bunch of computers and bang out an animated feature...by the time that average "indy" figured out what they wanted to do and started trying to raise more money for it I'd be done... What would you do?

No one admires Kurosawa, Kubrick or Lynch for they lifestyles or what gear they used to make they films... people remember THE FILMS... So why should you care about how/why/where you make your films? Just fucking make them already.... or no don't make them and let me get all the glory ^ ^

I could be complaining about how I don't have Pixar's render farm and how I don't have a distribution deal or enough money or whatever... I could be complaining about how hard it is to do this... but you don't see me doing that... WHY? It's not going to make my film any better so its a waste of my time... I'd rather put my time and energy into the films I make.

The reason I share all this shit is because I WANT TO SEE YOUR UNIQUE FILMS... So if you have the WILL find the WAY today.

Comments

  1. WHOA DUDE!! ANOTHER EXCELLENT RAGE! I am on fire! I am ready to rumble! I am excited! I am all kinds of jazzed-up! Wednesday is my shoulder surgery and then after that I have 3 to 4 months OFF TO MAKE MY LITTLE ART ANIMATION FILM! I WILL DO IT! I WILL DO IT! I am jumping up and down screaming I WILL DO IT! NOTHING WILL STOP ME! BEING ONE ARMED WON'T STOP ME! I WILL DO IT! 8O

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  2. So what would most hipster independent filmmaker types do if they got $50,000? Probably rent some artsy loft to live in and buy some fancy camera and waste the rest on cigarettes and "research" trips to foreign countries...That's hilarious. It's probably true which makes it extra hilarious. Ha ha ha!

    On your recommendation, I read "The War of Art." The author made many great points, one of them along these lines: "The artist is entitled to his labor, not the fruits of his labor."

    I bring this up because all too often we "commit" ourselves to filmmaking only to talk ourselves out of it with questions such as "How am I gonna market it?" or "Whose product can I place to raise additional funds?"

    In terms of the creative process, these questions aren't necessary. Still, we keep piling them on until our spirits break. Making a film is work enough. If people focus solely on the films themselves, they'll discover that their hard work and vision are plenty rewarding.

    People need to detach themselves from unnecessary accessory questions that cause them to lose site of the original goal: To make a film.

    Yes, there's a lot to be said for marketing and product whoring and MySpace pages, but we must not allow such things to get in between us and our films.

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  3. With 50 grand I'd probably buy some HDD, a new car that doesnt suck gas, and maybe some movies I've been meaning to watch. Then I'd spend the next few months polishing all of my ideas/scripts that I've been working on, hopefully finishing around the same time Scarlet (the new RED) comes out. I've been making films for a long time, I've won my share of awards, and am ready to move on up. For someone like me, moving up on equipment is one of the only things I can do with money (toward my films, otherwise I'd be taking my family out to fancy dinners). Until I have some huge scale project, I'll continue to steal locations, pay actors with food, use my friends as crew, and play as all the major production roles myself. You just don't need big bucks to pump out anything other than action films.(fantasy, sci-fi all that good stuff can be achieved with computers). Even with action films, if I were to do it, the only things I'd be paying for would be location permits (because I'd shoot practical, not CG), the pyro-technics, probably the stunt crew, and other sort of things that would be blow'd up during the process. Why blow up a perfectly good car when I can grab one from a junkyard for 2 bills?

    Reason for shooting on RED? If I had the cash to buy a professional Cine-cam for under 20k, why the fuck wouldnt I? Especially if I'll be shooting something thats taken me years of love and preparation. High-end equipment should be used out of respect, not hopes.

    Just wanted to squeeze this in.. A lot of people like Kurosawa, Kubrick and Lynch because of their life styles. Their close collaborators and friends/family as well. And a lot of great developers really admired Kubrick for his innovative ideas in the technical side of cinema (Crazy NASA lenses he used for Barry Lyndon, etc.).

    And who the hell is complaining about the digital revolution? Dont listen to them, they'll just waste your time.

    hope HSM's coming out great,

    -stephen

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  4. This is EXACTLY how I feel about RED. You basically said what I've been thinking for a long time. I have friends who fret and fuss over what kind of lighting kits they have, what they're editing with, why Final Cut Pro destroys all other non-linear editors, what lens you have, blah, blah, blah.

    All you need is a camera, something to edit on, a story, and people.

    What camera, what program, and which people don't matter as much as the STORY and the PASSION behind it. All else is simply gravy. I'm a first time reader. . . I'll be back. :-)

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  5. Hell yeah! I've been sitting in Hell for the last four years cause for some reason I thought filmschool would be a necessary thing. Now that I'm a little wiser (mostly thanks to the great MdotStrange) I'm so fucking hungry to get my films made that shit like film school would just hold me back. I totally agree that too many kids sit around talking about doing shit and being famous celebrities and shit. They're into the latest brand name camera. Fuck Red. Real people who care about creating entertainment and good films are willing to sleep in the tube slide at the fucking park for what they want to do. They're willing to shoot that shit on a rented camera and edit it in their parent's basement if they have to. And you know what?! I can't fucking wait to do this! And you know where whatever money I make, if I even make any, will go towards? An even bigger better movie! I like sleeping in the backseat of my car just fine, sirs.

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  6. me and my buddy are gonna make a flick with a camera phone in an attempt to show all the snobby kids that they dont need high end equipment to make a decent production. its got me all giddy thinking of new ways to approach things.

    @Andrew,
    No, don't fuck RED. Fuck RED if you've never shot a film before, fuck RED if you don't know what dynamic range is, fuck RED if you have absolutely no means or need for shooting on it, fuck RED if you're a beginning filmmaker with a perfectly fine video camera. But don't fuck RED if you've been working a long time, have plenty of experience, have the money to get it, have love and dedication to a large project. I'm tired of hearing the two extremes of filmmaking, its either "I WILL NOT SHOOT ON ANYTHING BESIDE 35mm ACADEMY. ANYTHING BELOW THAT IS NOT WORTHY OF MY PRESTIGIOUS, AWARD WINNING TALENT" or "THERES ABSOLUTELY NO NEED FOR ANYTHING BUT MY PARENTS OLD VHS CAM, JUST BECAUSE YOU CANT SEE MY EXT.NIGHT SCENE DOESNT MEAN ITS BAD. IT JUST MEANS YOU DONT UNDERSTAND." It's all about HOW you approach SPECIFIC projects.

    So please, if anyone reading this belongs to either party, kindly GTFO.

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  7. @ Scott:

    "fuck RED if you have absolutely no means or need for shooting on it"

    I don't personally know any one that has a need to shoot on it.

    I figure that unless you have pockets lined with gold and a huge dedication the the artform, RED should never cross your mind. No one I know needs to shoot at 4096x2304.

    I have a camera that shoots 1080i. It's all I need, and frankly, it's even more than what most people need.

    I don't feel polar about this issue. I just can't stand kids who drool over RED when they can hardly pay for tuition. They need to learn that the enemy of art is the absence of limitations and make movies with what they have available. You can throw all the money in the world into equipment, but it doesn't make you a better filmmaker. There's this strange phenomenon that I've seen about people wanting to be "pro." I don't believe being "pro" requires you to throw all the money you have and then some into a camera. I personally would rather stay away from being "pro." I personally associate the word "pro" with the word "rigid."

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  8. @evan ryan

    Well first off, apologies for misspeaking (typing?). Perhaps I should replace the word need with crave or intensely desire.

    Secondly, your pockets do not need to be lined with gold to shoot on the RED. Most people with jobs (unless we're talking minimum wage) can afford to save up to shoot a few weeks with the RED. This is by renting the camera, not purchasing it. The people that purchase the RED are people who looking into 1 of 2 (or both) things: 1. Starting their own production company, in which purchasing the camera would save them money over the amount of times they'd have to rent it. Or 2. Planning to rent it out to others to make money.

    Third, I don't think I've ever encountered anyone (except maybe rich 17 year-olds on forums) who wants to shoot on the red because of it's resolution. When I get into discussions about the RED its usually about the contrast ratio that the censor chips give you. The dynamic range. This really frees the filmmaker to work wonders with lighting to compose very beautiful images without the hassle that lower end cameras give you, which includes but is not limited to clipping whites and noisy blacks. This means you can compose scenes with very low exposure and very high exposure without having to compensate for either. This means a faster set up, more time in other creative aspects, less time tweaking lights and adjusting the iris. RED also doesnt just give you hi resolution footage, it gives you a raw file. If you're familiar with DSLRS, then you'll know what I'm talking about. Raw files are essentially untainted information allowing you to fully make any sort of correction to your images without distortion. This is exactly like the chemical process when working with film. Which is why raw files have been dubbed "digital negatives". So instead of tweaking the colours in after effects or an NLE, you tweak them with raw editors, giving you complete control over the image in all its entirety. Also like a lot of the newer prosumer cameras (you said you have an HD cam, perhaps yours has the following as well) the RED doesnt use tapes. This means over time the amount of cash you spend on tapes will be saved (unless u never use ur camera) on one initial purchase of either a hard drive or memory card. File recording as opposed to tape recording helps enormously with scene/take organization with larger projects. No more logging and capturing, so that's less time waiting, more time creating.

    continue.......>>>>

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  9. ((((cont'd))))

    You have a camera that shoots 1080i, great, I'm actually shooting my next film on the XHA1, which shoots at 1080i. Have you seen it blown up on a big screen? I have, and it looks great, it really does. Yea, right now it's all I need. In fact, its more than I need. I have a DVX100b, which isn't HD at all, its standard def, and it produces great images, and I've been using it for almost 2 years now. But if theres a camera that can produce even better images, and it's at my disposal, why would I not want to use it? That's silly, of course I want my film to look as sharp as possible, so I'll do whatever I feel is necessary for getting a very polished final product. If I've spent so much time brainstorming, writing, re-writing, storyboarding, re-writing again and just all this work on the story itself, I believe I should spend just as much dedication in the shooting/editing of it as well.

    Is 1080i more than what most people need? Probably yea, but honestly, it's becoming more and more available, and it's replacing any 480i cameras around. Eventually, people wont have a choice, there wont be any standard def cameras around, and theyll shoot hidef, for FAARRR cheaper than me or you paid. Every since the 80's, video has made filmmaking much more accessible to average joes, and thats a lovely thing. So when RED starts doing for our generation (if you havnt already, go check out REDs upcoming camera the Scarlet) what 16mm did for the 60's and up, it's definately something to embrace. And if you can't afford it just yet, dont hate on those who can, simply rejoice with fellow filmmakers and continue to use what is available to you.

    That said, it's glad to hear you don't feel polar toward this. And I totally understand when you say you hate the kiddies that believe better equipment = better film maker. In highschool, when someone asked me "ooo, whatd you edit with?" I would get crazy. I'd go fucking nuts. Because I could have told them anything and they wouldnt have known. It's not like cutting from a wide to a CU is any different from FCP to Premiere. So yes, i KNOW EXACTLY where your coming from on this. However, when I get this question from people about what editing software I use, I usually follow my curses with "Go try out some 30 day trials. Theyre free. Theyre available. Go find what suits you best, and if you cant afford them, then use iMovie or Windows Movie Maker." I strongly believe in the idea of bringing the naive out of the darkness and pushing them into enlightenment. So be stern, but lend your hand as well.

    And yea man, 'PRO' can be irritating to hear. Dont let some kids ruin your perception of the word. It means experienced, and I think experience is what we all need to become great.

    By the way, have anything online I can take a gander at? I love nothing more than to see work from peers.

    catch ya,

    -stephen

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  10. I think you should go back and re-read the blog you are referring to, because the post wasn't limited to "opportunities going away", it encompasses a Large variety of obstacles facing indie-filmmakers, at all stages of production, and based on the issue's listed, it is VERY obvious it is directed at indie-filmmakers making FAR more than just a garage film. And the lack of opportunity complaints to which you refer to, were not so much about them drying up, as it was about current ones, and NEW opportunities not being fully developed, or pursued. In addition they are about, budgets being so over-inflated that even if your film does find it's audience, the combination, of the low-balling guarantees being offered by the suits, and the paltry returns we are getting back as result of Piracy and the dirt cheap prices consumers demand in these "new digital opportunities", are making it virtually impossible for you to even recover the 500,000 grand you paid to all the cast in your film! Therefore it becomes impossible for you to profit, and make a living and do it all over again...

    Have you ever sold a film to a studio? If you had you know that ONLY in the indie-film business can you have a success film, and still find yourself buried chest deep in a hole of debt! Whether a studio picks up your film, and spends millions of dollars on the P&A of your film, because the film has an audience, means absolutely NOTHING to your bottom line, because they don't give YOU the millions in P&A. In todays market, and in the "new Digital world" YOU'll one lucky son-of-a-gun, to be one of maybe five to handful to secure a garrentee over 200,000 on your 2 to 5 million dollar investment. And since the studio gets to recover the millions they spent backing and distributing your film, BEFORE they ever pay another dime, through the process of creative accounting a few million becomes tens of million, and it'll be years before you start to see any back-end returns. ESPECIALLY, with the other above mentions circumstances we are seeing as a result of this "New Digital world" you speak of. So if your a filmmaker who manages to scrape up 2 million, through loans or where-ever, in todays market, even with the "new digital opportunities" you FAR more likely to find yourself putting your home and all the possessions you've worked so hard to acquire, up for sale on ebay.

    The blogpost was meant to give a voice to these issues, and start a dialog about finding solutions to the current very real issues we are running into, in this new digital world. Not just complain about them. So how about picking a couple of those issues and helping contribute some solutions.

    I recommend numbers 8 and 9.

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  11. Stephen - How much is cheaply to you?? 50, 100, 500 grand, how about a million?

    In the REAL world. Unless you are Blowin-up shit in your backyard, then even to Blow up a 2 dollar car, you have to have a hell of allot more than just permits and pyrotechs) There are people involved! LOL! To blow up anything at a location, your location will cost you about 5,000 a day in LA and NY, and about 2,500 a day, in other states. The location owner, will require that you have a permit and INSURANCE covering the minimum value of the property, between 500,000 and 1 million, this alone will cost you about 20 to 30,000. Even if the location guy is a retard and doesn't require you to have insurance, BOTH the Permit office and Stunt crew and/or Pyrotechs will. Got people anywhere near any sort of fire, crashes, or explosives, (camera guy, crew, stunt or pyro guys) Then guess what the permit authorities AND insurance company will require you also have life insurance for the entire crew, in case anyone DIES or is injured on the property! Ever tried to get insurance, when there is both PEOPLE, AND fire, explosives, or vehicles involved?? Dude it cost us a 30,000 security deposit Just to string a stunt guy up on wires, two stories high, for 30 seconds at one location!! So your looking at closer to 50,000. So for every single stunt you plan to shoot at a location, other than your backyard, be prepared to fork over a minimum of 20,000 to 50,000 per stunt! You get half of the combined total you pay back at the end of production. Oh and thats not all, Thinking of using just some friendly volunteers as your stunt peeps.. Forget it, the insurance company will also require licensed professional Stunt men, and/or pyrotechs, which will cost you between $15,000 to 50,000 a day, for both, or 5,000 to 15,000 a day for one, depending on the stunt, level of danger, and the equipment they need. If the stunt men are repped by a union (SAG),(and they probably are if they are licensed professionals) then you also have to pay into the unions P&H plan! That's not all, you'll also be required to hire the local fire department, that's about 500/hr for 4 guys and a fire truck and ambulance on to be on stand by. roughly $4,400 for a full 8/hr day. You also have hire a police officer for every entry or access point to the location, to ensure no innocent by-standers get within 100 feet of where you are shooting. This is 70hr, per officer.

    In my ten years as an associate producer, having worked on films of every budget range, I've NEVER been able to shoot a non-CG, non recognizable name, action film for under 2 million. If you are going to invest that much, then you'll might as well just increase the budget and go to three or four million, and put some recognizable talent in it, or don't expect to get more than 500 grand for it world wide. Unless you plan to self distribute. If you can't raise the doe for the talent and stunts, then your best bet is to shoot green screen and use stock footage, and go pure CG.

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  12. Lastly, Sci-fi, Fantasy, and Horror film Budgets, you are correct, they can be achieved "cheaply with a computer", if your talking about a short film. For a full length feature, done cheaply with a computer, 99% of the time, these turn out looking and feeling, no better than a Troma film! ROFL!! Or like the boring teenage formula movies we've seen twenty million of before, only with bad production value. Here its the Talent, Production design, Make-up FX, and costumes, VFX, DVFX, and Composer, and sound designer, that cost money. Will it be shot on a rigged green screen in your backyard? Or a green screen stage? Who will do all the Digital composting your planning? If your going to do all the computer work yourself, on full length feature, be prepared to spend at least 3 to 4 years working it. Any Make-up effects involved? Visual effects? Locations? All of those things require other things, also.

    But if your one HELL of a DIRECTOR, AND Production Designer, AND VFX Artist, AND Composer, all in one, AND you have a very basic story, set in one or two locations, with no name talent, you maybe could pull it off for under 300,000. Unless you do something like Blair Witch, and even that cheap one trick pony cost 100,000.

    We aren't spending big bucks because we want to! We don't! It's too risky! We are spending them because thats what the "forces that be" require we spend to get what we want. This, and because anyone who has never made film, seems to think everyone making films has millions of dollars burning holes in their pockets, so the second you say "movie" the price goes through the roof.

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  13. @ lilian

    action flick done cheaply to me is 500k. thats for me, and im very sure that with enough creativity and risky business, someone could shoot it for less. Also, yes I know that people are involved in explosions, and i know that costs money. which is why i said anything else thatd be "blow'd up". gone through some q&a's with filmmakers who have stolen the shots, often using dummy's etc. final product ending up looking wonderful. sorry for me i dont recall the name of the film as it was just some schlocky action movie with material equivalent to this weekends blockbuster. so please spare me the 'pix or it didnt happen'.

    as for cg work in other films, there are a lot of people collaborating in each others mediums. think about the short 405 that was done quite a few years back. Very legit visuals, for a skimpy budget. I've seen too many 'test videos' and short films that are visually impressive for anyone to tell me that its out of reach, or extremely difficult to accomplish.

    Yes, i know you dont spend big bucks just because you want to, im very aware that each dollar goes to use. but I know that if youre a producer thats worked on a huge range of budgets, you also know of the (VERY FEW) low budget films (under a million) that have rather extravagant practical effects in them. Perhaps the next time i come across one of these, i can send u the information.

    best,
    -stephen

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  14. If I had a lot of money, in a sense I would try to "save" it as much as I possibly can.

    What I would pay for would be a couple Macs & high-end (gaming) PCs (some will probably be borrowed), have the best, but "affordable" HDTV out there. A HDR filming camera that'll probably cost under $10,000. Plenty of used, discounted films and games so that I can get inspiration and influence from while still keeping originality. Some sufficient instruments. An adequate "studio" with colored-screens and mo-cap or whatever. I'll make sure to get enough of what I need while keeping things as economic as I can..

    I think I may forget some more, maybe not, but other than that I'd probably find a way that I can live without paying outrageous bills & taxes & crap. Stay over at a friend's/family's home. Psh, sleep in my decent, ecological car that I won't use too much. I'll get the best bike that can go large distance really fast, and can carry plenty of things on it!

    I'll find ways that I can have enough while keeping things affordable and less costly. Shoot, M Dot Strange made such an astonishing art film We Are The Strange for only $20G!!! Just like almost 3 years making it, and was worth it! In time, it'll take less time than that while being more quality.

    I have dreams, visions, and aspirations, and that will be done. A will that guides me. I shall have faith & achieve! Nothing shall stop me! I'm not gonna let some damn money and people and crap stop me!!! I can be well feed without even rent if I want to, to do what I gotta do! Anything is possible. We can do all things!

    Mine, and others', ideas may seem wild, but brilliant and shall be done. I can take down the giant(s) of $$$ and all those worldly obstacles that get in my path!!

    Strangers and outcasts, but ideally 'revolutionaries' like me and M Dot Strange, and plenty of others are gonna be the one to make positive changes in the world. This will lead to eventual impact. We are 'chosen' to do this. We've got to faithfully reach that....

    LOL, sorry for all that! It's a lot to express at once. I'm stating all this, and I'm just 16 yrs old hispanic male, 11th grader in tax-up-the-A$$ Roselle/Elizabeth, New Jersey, who hasn't even made a single project, or written a single script!! I have written a couple of ideas down on Microsoft Word, though. Whatever other expressions, I should share them. Actually get into "pro-action"! Shalom Aleichem!..

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  15. Anfegahz, from me to you, go out and make movies first before you start thinking too much about what you do and don't want, what you need and don't need, etc. Make your first film, put your name on it, and move on to the first. Making that first movie is the one of the most liberating feelings in the world, and only once you have made it will you be able to know what you want from the medium. Just advice, but it rang true for me.

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  16. @lillian
    I know that The Asylum does films for right at abou 250K. I have seen them use explosions.

    I noticed you adding up a ton of stuff like police officers, union workers, etc.

    There are ways around this easily. Non-Union workers, B-list artists, I can hire a police officer for 25 bucks an hour in Texas for events. I also have a good contact in the business of explosions. They do rocks and buildings. I can definately get them for an afternooon for the cost of explosives.

    I can find free sets as it is legal in the area to film almost anywhere without a permit.

    500K and I'll do part one and part two.

    Who cares about name actors? You can get a good actor with a small name for a good price.

    Actors no longer bring in the dough they once did so pointless in getting one unless you can get them for super cheap. You can get a great actor for a little money who was in a one shot movie, like Hilary Swank when she was in Karate Kid, was a small recognizable actor but great actress who was hired for 3,000 USD to make an Oscar winning performance.

    Going the whole "Hollywood" production route wastes money and Hollywood will have to learn to do things more efficiently if they are to survive. I mean how can movies start justifying 300,000,000budgets in 10 years for any movie?

    Check out www.myspeace.com/directordave He has some good tips on keeping costs low on action films.

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  17. Pixar's render farm is wasted on pixar's films...

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  18. @shawn

    Well if thats the kind of films your aspiring to make, then well, good luck with that.

    The Asylum does straight to DVD movies.. And for the most part they lose money and or make very little in return. More importantly, I'd be interested in knowing how many of their filmmakers go on to become respected or successful artists?? They most likely stay doing those films, because this industry pigeon holes a filmmakers talent, based on their first couple of films. Be careful what you choose to direct or put your name on.

    >> "Actors no longer bring in the dough they once did so pointless in getting one unless you can get them for super cheap."

    Oh but Directors and Actors do bring in the dough! Filmmakers watch everything, and anything, so name actors mean little to you and I. HOWEVER, NOT to Distributors, retailers and exhibitors!! And at the moment they are crucial to a filmmaker getting out of the, film festival, Web, and straight-to-DVD market, and into the theaters. I don't know about you, but I don't know ANY filmmaker aspiring to become a web-film maker, or a straight-to-DVD-filmmaker. Do you? Every new filmmaker I know, is aspiring to have their work of Art projected 40ft. wide and 20ft. high in every major city in America! And to that, you need a distributor, with a war chest big enough to distribute and promote your film. And let me tell you, the VERY FIRST question they ask is not How good is your movie?, or how many online fans does it have?, or what do the critics think? It is WHO DIRECTED IT?, AND WHO'S IN IT?! If you cannot impress them with the answer, they either hang up on you, or push you off to an assistant who gives you the address of their "we'll never see it pile".

    They have to ask this question, because this the first question asked by the Distrubtor's - retailers, exhibitors, ouline outlets, and TV outlets. Because this is what they think attracts business to their stores, sites and channels. And they are right to a certain extent. A Soderberg or Ridley Scott film, or a Bruce Willis film, or Micheal Caine film, will most likely sell more tickets, DVD's, and online downloads, for them, than any of the Asylum filmmaker's films. Same is true for film festivals, even the so called, Indie film festivals. Name stars, attract more festival ticket sales. That's the bottom line.

    Can you name five or even one, under 1 million dollar "break out Action pictures" that went on to make millions? The ONLY genre's where this rule does not apply is with Documentaries and the always fun, Horror genre.

    The horror genre is the only genre, I've ever seen where the under 1 million dollar films, with no recognizable name talent, can make millions for a Distributor, and launch an actor and/or directors career, and all at the same time too!

    Unfortunately for Horror filmmakers, the distributors haven't yet figured out why this is! Simply because, they don't like horror films, and don't care for the genre, they consider it one notch above porn, even though it makes them millions. Therefore, the genre remains a mystery to them, as they are unable to distinguish a good horror film, from a bad one, and if unique, then they don't know how to sell them, so they pass up acquiring them. Instead they continue to ask horror filmmakers the same two above mentioned "who" questions. Which usually results in them being caught off guard by the unique, break out, horror film, that they previously passed up, because it had no recognizable "sell-able" talent, being a huge success. Like Hostel, Saw, Halloween, Texas Chainsaw, etc... The list is endless here. But even those films required a distributor with guts enough to risk his bosses money, on something unique, with no big name talent. And with most Indie distribs closing shop. good luck finding one of those.

    But seriously do wish you the best of luck with your under 250 or under 500K action picture.

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  19. @ Stephen.

    Your are correct there are (VERY FEW) under 1 million dollar films that go on to become financal or carreer launching successes. But name two that are high explosive Action film's?

    Live vicariously through others mistakes..

    I do agree with you about the RED though!! Effing brilliant digital camera. I'm sooo thankful the indie filmmaker can finally compete on a level playing field with the 35mm filmmaker!

    One exception I do take though.
    @ Even and stephan,

    >>>"No one I know needs to shoot at 4096x2304.I have a camera that shoots 1080i. It's all I need, and frankly, it's even more than what most people need."

    >>"Third, I don't think I've ever encountered anyone (except maybe rich 17 year-olds on forums) who wants to shoot on the red because of it's resolution.<<<

    Ever tried pulling green or blue screen out of the hair, of a Blond Chick or guy, at 1080i, 16bit/ 24bit color depth, without pullin all their hair out, and have it look seamless? That shit'll make you wanna cry doing with 4,4,4 Cineon files transferred from a 35mm film camera. Do it at 1080, and you'll wanna add some bleach to your lemonade.

    It's so cheap to shoot green screen, I'd think it would be more than just rich 17yr olds.

    4096 x 2304 is VERY good!

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  20. most of things u had posted are true, i want to be an animator someday also, but i don't want to leave it at words, i want to put hands to work, i had started to practice more, start to invest time in my weaknesses and not only my strenght, and i had been writing my ideas down, i don't care if i don't become like super famous or i have to insvest a lot of time to do it, i just want to get all those ideas and stuff out of my head so i can feel in peace with myself, i have a lot of work but i can't imagine myself doing other thing than drawing and animating in my future, this is all that i have, and matters to me. it might sound trilled but u had inspired me to believe in what i have and what i can do, even if i don't have super great drawing skills i still have my head and imagination so the rest is a lot of work, the one's that doesn't effort, the one's that doesn't achieve. i hope someday i can work alongside with u and other awesome people to make a movie that kicks ass, thanks for believing in urself because that makes us believe in ourselves too, i which u the best men, keep going

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  21. Think I don't understand that? I know that I would have to apply myself most of all. Well my early work will be some short & feature "simple" live-action films and some animated ones, & a few video games. Say that I'm doing it again or whatever crap, I just want to express myself some. You may be trying to be realist, but you may come across as somewhat pessimist, negative, or defeatist, hey you may not be that. Or at least when it comes to big 'action' films. Though that's not the neccesary route. Honesty is at least good. Me I'll do some great animated/live-action films & games without outrageous prices or excessive explosions & all that crap, It doesn't have to be all so-called "ultra-realistic" to be good. Good imagination. No need for overdrive of all those special effects & 'all dat 'good stuff'. I don't mean it in the literal sense, because some of my stuff may have a lot of "special effects", I mean to the extent that the project will be more about all that than more of the substance & style.

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  22. Anfegahz,

    it will ALWAYS be about substance and style. telling a good story, provoking a strong emotion, etc. 'smaller' productions usually have more of this because have to compensate for the production value. the flip side to the coin as we know, is that a lot of big studio productions dont pay attention to the subtleties because of the production value. not all, but a lot.

    a movie with the no fancy effects or realism can be far more gratifying than a movie with those things. AND the other way around. so if production value doesnt guarantee a great movie, why care? because why would after all ur hard work and love into your story and characters, would you sell them short? if you CAN raise money to get quality footage, sound, acting, effects, etc, why wouldnt you? if its just a little project (like the hundreds of short films ive done in my life) you dont rly need that cash money. but im getting out of my teen years, and i have job opportunities, so my next step is to bump up the technical quality. I've spent all these years shooting hi-8, mini-dv, hell even webcam movies, that its about time to do my ideas physical justice. Do i NEED to? God no, I'll make movies no matter what. But if i CAN, why wouldnt I?

    You say you haven't done any work yet, so I wish you the best to a fantastic future of film.

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