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When he gave the San Francisco State Of Cinema Address at the 56th SFIFF, Steven Soderbergh nailed it, several times over actually. In regards to the privilege of getting to make movies, he said that “the only way to repay that karmic debt is to make something good, is to make something ambitious, something beautiful, something memorable”.
That’s true, right? That’s the deal. That’s the deal in front of us every day. The deal on the table, day in and day out. But do people abide by it?
Most people exchange their labor for things they don’t care about and the money is supposed to make it all worth while. And we know how well that works, how far forward that structure has brought us, right? Money [...]
Two weeks ago at The San Francisco Film Society we launched A2E (Artist To Entrepreneur), a specific line of programming designed to provide filmmakers with the necessary entrepreneurial skills and best practices needed to have a sustainable creative life. We launched with A2E OnRamp, a workshop to allow filmmakers to budget, schedule, and predict possible revenues for their film throughout the direct distribution process.
Before we rolled up our sleeves to start the practical, I warmed up the crowd with a series of short lectures focusing on what all filmmakers should know about the film biz, the current culture, and recommended best practices for themselves. Last week I shared with you what we discussed about culture in general. Prior to that, I shared with you what I felt we had to recognize and accept, at least for now, about the film business.
Today, I offer you my recommendations on best practices in times like these if you want to have a hope of a sustainable creative life as a filmmaker. Don’t worry if it looks like there is more than you can currently achieve. It is a process and you are not alone. It gets better. We can build it better together.
- Focus on developing Entrepreneurial Skills as well as the creative. The corporate distributors don’t need your work to the extent that they will ever value it as much as you will. If you want your work to last, engage, and be profitable, it is up to you to be prepared to use it to ignite all opportunities. Armed with a good story and good storytelling skills, you should be able to profit if you know how to take responsibility for your creation. [...]
By Roger Jackson
Previously: How to Avoid Rejection
I’m in London talking to most of the UK video-on-demand outlets. Being English myself doesn’t seem to confer any advantages. It may even cause suspicion — the Brit who abandoned ship and washed up in sunny California, and now he wants our business…screw him. That’s still the attitude here, at least among some. LOVEFiLM (yes, that’s how they write the name) just told me that while they’ll happily ingest KinoNation films, they’re much more interested in — and focused on — television content. I like that level of honesty, and I’m not surprised. The lion’s share of VoD revenue on platforms like Netflix, Hulu and LOVEFiLM right now is being generated by TV shows, rather than movies. But movies on demand is still a big — and growing — business. Big enough for us to disrupt! [...]
1 down, 99 to go. I look forward to the day when the need for A2E is no longer. But that sure ain’t now. We need to launch new iterations in new locations with new participants. We need to build on what has started. We need to put the entrepreneurial knowledge into the filmmakers’ tool kit. We need to make filmmakers as savvy with the platforms as they are with the creative aspects. If we want a sustainable, diverse, and ambitious filmmaking culture, we need to make sure that the creators and their supporters are the direct financial beneficiaries of the work they generate.
Here’s the initial wrap of round one. Much more to come: [...]
Last week at The San Francisco Film Society we launched A2E (Artist To Entrepreneur), a specific line of programming designed to provide filmmakers with the necessary entrepreneurial skills and best practices needed to have a sustainable creative life. We launched with A2E OnRamp, a workshop to allow filmmakers to budget, schedule, and predict possible revenues for their film throughout the direct distribution process.
Before we rolled up our sleeves to start the practical, I warmed up the crowd with a series of short lectures focusing on what all filmmakers should know about the film biz, the current culture, and recommended best practices for themselves. Last week I shared with you what we discussed about the film business. Today, I offer you my rumination on culture in general. Like the post on the film business, it is easy to dismiss this as generally negative. That simply is not true; that is nostalgia playing havoc with your perception. There never were good old days because back then people needed to find best practices too. They did not know then what you know now, just as those coming down the pike will have full benefit of all your excavation tomorrow. So be it.
If we want to move forward we need to access where we are currently standing, and adapt our behavior to the reality we encounter. So…
- This is an Era of Grand Abundance. There are more things to do than ever before. Everything is competing for increasingly limited available leisure time. As many of 50,000 feature film titles are generated on a worldwide basis annually. Good movies don’t get seen.
- Movies are not the dominant option for leisure time activities for most people. [...]
It was not going to be shared, but the public demanded it, and Steven wanted to give the people what they wanted. Here’s the video and full transcript:
It should be mandatory watching & reading for all filmmakers.
Remember those places you loved? The ones you wanted to return to some day? What did they have in common? What were the details they shared? Are any of those aspects around you now? Forget about the tourist sites, but what are the favorite places you’ve been to?
1) I miss my treehouse only 12 ft off the ground but […]
Whether it is the need to have a sustainable and ambitious and diverse film culture or solving breast cancer, the solution is the same. The way we think about charity is dead wrong.
This video is a much watch for any one who believes not for profits can make the world a better place, and yet has always wondered […]