As I mentioned in the previous post, there are a couple different versions of how much my movie might cost. But no matter what the determined scale of this project ends up being, I'm definitely going to need financial backing.
From what I've observed of other filmmakers and from my own past experiences, securing finances for a film tends to be the first major hurdle (and possibly the most daunting). A writer/director spends months falling in love with a story, turning the words around, and dreaming what the film will ultimately look like. The sad part is that most independent films aren't able to secure their budget and never make it to production. They just end where they began, as a script on some guy's hard drive who thought he had a good idea for a movie. I'm sure there are some pretty amazing movies out there that just need an opportunity to be made. Although that seems to be the pervading fate here, it is not an option for me as it would make for a very defeatist blog. I promise you will not read a post in two months announcing "In light of my inability to raise a budget for this project, you can no longer watch me make a movie." I suppose I'd have to change the blog title, too.
After tightening the script to my liking, the next step will be to seek out an executive producer. An executive producer is a title most often given to a individual or party responsible for contributing or securing the necessary funds to the project. Naturally, there is always some stake in the movie that goes along with it.
So where do I find an executive producer? How do I sell them this project? I can't really answer this with any certainty because I've never done this before! What I can do is give a candid look at my game plan.
Over the past three years I have written and directed a few projects that have garnered some level of attention at varying degrees and I have been able to make some worthwhile industry contacts. Whether as an actor, writer, or director, these people and/or companies have expressed interest in some of my work (or maybe even just me). These contacts will be the first people I approach. While never easy, at least these people/companies are relevant professionals who would expect me to approach them and, I hope, be interested to read my feature-length screenplay.
The next round of people to approach are also individuals who have previously expressed interest in my work, but have no real experience investing or producing movies. This type of executive producer is a harder sell simply because I am selling more. With production companies and regular film financiers, the only real sell is the appeal of my story and my directorial abilities. They know how the independent film business works and are mainly looking for content. With non-undustry investors, I'll have to sell the entire investment and endeavor of making a movie even before I try to convince them that mine is one worth making. Then I'll still have to convince them that I'm the guy to make it.
Alas, if everyone I approach over the next couple months turns me down, I will simply reserve the Executive Producer title for myself. That would also mean that I would have to foot the bill myself and seriously modify script and production to accommodate such a low-budget operation. This is where the small-scale version of this movie would come into play. It's not ideal, but I'd make it work. That scenario will be my contingency plan. It wouldn't be pretty, but it would definitely make this blog far more interesting to read.