Saturday, May 27, 2017

SCREENPLAY, THE DREAM VS. BUDGET REALITIES

SCREENPLAY THE DREAM VS. BUDGET REALITIES

You wrote a great screenplay. You were dying to go out and shoot it. You sat down and did a budget breakdown and discovered that Guy Ritchie would think twice before blowing that much money. In other words you are a low budget film maker, but you wrote a big budget screenplay. 
 
This has happened to us all. 
 
The thing that you are going to have to do is set it aside until you can afford to make this film and go about writing and producing a film or two that will help you to raise the money for that script. 
 
You are going to have to learn how to write a low or micro budget screenplay. The problem with this is that most film makers only have a few clues as to how to do this. Limited locations and limited cast members is part of it, but not the whole story. Because if you are not careful you will limit yourself right out of writing a quality screenplay. Instead you will end up with a film that looks and sounds like it was paid for with food stamps. 
 
The rules of crafting a great script does not change. In fact you have to focus more or these fundamental rules when writing your low budget screenplay.

This is a chapter from my new audio book on screen writing. If you have an audible account or a kindle account you can easily check it out there. Also available on iTunes.

You see that writing a low budget screenplay is not enough. You need to write a quality one. When I started this blog many years ago I wanted to help other film makers while learning as much as I could along the way. I love movies and want to see better and better stories being told. If you go back in time to the 1930's and 40's then jump to the 70's it seems like people did know how to make great films, but since then the secret of steel was left on the battlefield. It is time to get back to making great movies again. Great movies begin with a great script. Over the next few post we are going to talk about writing.

Thank you for visiting my blog and please take a moment to share this post.


Sunday, April 30, 2017

A CROWDFUNDING POST

I know that it has been awhile since we did this, but I have been busy with the release of my screenwriting book on audio.
Let’s get down to business a huge part of digital feature film making is fundraising.
There usually comes a time during production or in post that the money runs low and  you need to reach out for some more. thankfully Kickstarter and indiegogo are there to help. 

Yes, I know that there are other sites, but for today we are going to focus on campaigns that are live on these sites.

First up is a film titled INNER GHOST.

     

Remember that if you do not have money to donate that is fine. You can help by spreading the word. Share the campaign on Facebook or Twitter. Okay we are going back to back horror movies on Kickstarter. This one is titled The Black Gloves.



    

Over at Indiegogo we have a few campaigns that I believe are worth taking a look at. Remember the difference between the two sites is that at Indiegogo you get all the funds raised whether or not you hit your goal.

 This film is being prodced  by a seventeen year old. The coolest thing about micro budget film making is that it knows no age. You can be sixteen or sixty when you get started.  The title of
this film is A GUY, A GUITAR AND A GIRL.


 The next campaign is for the scifi film AGAIN.  This one has just started so you have almost two months to think about it and talk about it.





Anything that reminds me of Andromeda or Babylon 5 is a good thing and this next crowdfunding campaign does just that. Project Abaddon: Rise of the Destroyer




Back to Kickstarter for the last film on this list today. VOYEUR



I love to highlight crowdfunding campaigns, but to do so I need a little help.
If you have a indiegogo or kickstarter campaign for your project up and running please do not hesitate to contact this blog about it, just leave a comment and a link and I will do my best to help.
Thanks and good luck guys.


paperback on amazon



Tuesday, March 21, 2017

POND 5, BUY AND SELL DIGITAL FOOTAGE

At the moment, the website that has the world’s largest collection of stock footage is no other than Pond5, a marketplace for royalty-free media. This site has become the go-to option for numerous producers of digital media to buy and sell.

A Grand Selection to Increase the Value of Your Content

On Pond5, you will find millions of stock footage, audio, and images that will help stimulate your creativity in different aspects and thus achieve more original content in order to create a greater impact among all of your potential clients. 



Royalty-Free Stock Video at Pond5
The 411 on Pond5

Pond5 emerged in 2006 in New York, as a digital content agency that commercialized royalty-free videos. The success of the company resulted in the extension of its catalog; therefore, it started offering customers photographs, audio, and sound effects, too.

In the year 2013, the company acquired Pixmac and this merger allowed it to considerably increase its repertoire, becoming the biggest in the field. Since it is translated into more than 12-languages, it is visited on a daily basis by individuals from different parts of the globe.

Currently, Pond5 provides digital resources to many of the world's leading brands, including The Wall Street Journal, BBC, ABC, Weather Channel, and even National Geographic. In the network you will be able to find hundreds of agencies that offer audiovisual material.

Positive Review Galore

Ever since it was introduced to the public, Pond5 has been able to obtain numerous positive reviews, which indicates that most of its users have been satisfied with the material that they have obtained from it. Many consumers have highlighted the originality and good quality videos that are present on Pond5, emphasizing that they will continue to utilize its services.



Earn Money on Pond5

As a digital film maker, you cannot only buy footage on Pond5, but you can also sell it. Once you upload all of the creative work you want to sell, you will be able to set your own price, and once it goes live for the world to see, you will be able to earn 50% of each sale. You will be able to sell your work, without selling out!

Other Ways to Make Money on Pond5

If you have a blog or website, you can earn money by helping spread the word about Pond5. You simply have to register on the page and choose a banner to place on your site . . . that’s all! Each of the people who register through your referral link will earn you money. You will receive 5% of the total amount of purchases that each of your referrals has made in a year. If you do not have a blog or website, you can also earn money by recommending Pond5 to your friends and family via email.

Pond5 Keeps Standing out from the Rest

Just by entering the site you will realize that Pond5 provides quality and original content. All the footage is divided into categories, making it easier to search for what you are looking for. If you want your work to be professional, the sound effects must be impeccable and in Pond5 you will find them, from epic, footsteps, fire, explosions, and water sounds . . . whatever sound you want . . . you will more than likely find it on Pond5, which is just another reason what it keeps standing out from the rest.
Royalty-Free Stock Video at Pond5

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Found Footage 3d Screening

For the found footage genre to survive some people are going to have to take risk. This film, Found Footage 3d, was a risk and so far if word of mouth can be believed then that risk has paid off. Check out the trailer and try to check out one of the upcoming screenings.





You can visit the official site by clicking here.   






Tuesday, October 18, 2016

FILMMAKING, LEARNING IS ABOUT MISTAKES


“I counsel you, put down in record even your doubts and surmises. Hereafter it may be of interest to you to see how true you guess. We learn from failure, not from success.” ― Bram Stoker, Dracula


Before we begin, if there is anyone who wishes to do a guest blog post about a film project that they are working on you can contact me by leaving a comment at the bottom.

Now we are going to look at the learning power of failure. Film making unlike almost any other endeavor, is an exercise in trial and error. You get take after take to get a scene right. Before it was very expensive when film was used, but now with digital cameras and audio recording we can try and try again until perfection is found. The video that I would like to show you was shot around 2011 and the film maker made a ton of mistakes that he is happy to share with us.


  


     
 You as a film maker can help other film makers by recording behind the scenes footage and going over what worked and the mistakes that you learned from. One of the best interviews that I ever did was with a found footage film maker who made the mistake of shooting with multiple cameras and while not using the same frame rate. The editing process turned into a nightmare that took months rather than weeks. Always keep in mind that low-budget filmmaking is about learning a process. It is more difficult than big budget filmmaking because we can not solve every problem that pops up by throwing money at them. This a business where learning is everything. As the technology changes, you should learn and adapt along the way.


Good luck guys and please take a moment to share this post on your google plus.

.99 cents



  3rd party lens

Thursday, September 15, 2016

FOUND FOOTAGE, THE STATE OF THE GENRE ADDRESS

 


What qualifies me to give the state of Found Footage film making address? 

Have I ever made one? 

God no.

 Would I make on? 

Sure, but not in the horror genre and not pure found footage. 

Now back to the address. I am qualified because I spend almost an entire year writing a book on the subject. I interview dozens of low budget filmmakers for the book and sat through almost two hundred found footage films. I am a found footage war vet. I am the American Sniper of found footage films. When one is about to come out I get sent trailers and screening passes. I watch the trailers and never go to the screenings. Well until I got a pass for the new Blair Witch. I try my best to encourage film makers and rarely criticize them, but in this case... WHAT THE HELL? Scream, fall down dead and get dragged away. Lucky we have multiple cameras present or else we would not be able to scream, fall down dead and get dragged away some more and more and more and again. We are talking Eat, Sleep, Suplex, repeat.

  

   $.99* .COM Domain! Get going with GoDaddy! 

  The state of found footage on the big screen comes down to this that during the last three years the only film maker who cracked the code (I am from Philly and have seen the guy) is that legendary waster of movie goers time and studio's money M. Night. Yeah, The Visit points us in a direction that we needed to go if we are going to save this genre for future generation to suffer through. It works because it broke the unwritten rule about death. The leads do not have to die. The kids in that film survive because they behave like human beings, not puppets, when trouble strikes they actual use reason to survive it. I suppose that the lesson from the Visit takes us back to the first Blair witch Project. The movie is character-driven. The kids drive the film in the same way that heather drove the events in The Blair Witch. These two movies also have natural humor. Think about both films and I would bet that you can recall every major character in the films. Can you do that with any other found footage film? Maybe Paranormal activity, but come on there are only two real people in the first movie. Perhaps character driven is the way to go save this genre. 

 
 

  Found footage films are still films. To make a good found footage film you have to go out and make a good film that happens to be found footage. Go found footage only if it enhances the story like in the movie End of Watch. Remember there is also the footage film where no one was harming during the making of the film. With the ability to shoot world class footage with a smartphone the possibilities are endless. To conclude this post I believe that going back into the past to try to copy the success of the Blair Witch Project was a tactical mistake that will hurt the genre in the short term while looking into the past for inspiration in the form of another new film could be part of the answer.  Operation Avalanche.