The gift of overwhelming information to read on the internet burdens us to actually read it. One article that I came across that I found personally engaging was Peter Darling's Best Way to Run a Business. I think it is aimed at solo attorneys and budding entrepreneurs and small businesspeople. I think it is also useful for filmmakers. (To read the entire short article, click here.)
The part that stood out for me and which I find relevant for filmmakers is this one:
There are people all around you excelling at what you’re trying to learn. Start paying close attention to how they do it...Every day I am surprised when I ask clients and filmmakers if they know how "X director" or "Y producer" made "Z film" and the answer is "no." I am surprised because anyone who has been in the trenches long enough will tell you how hard it is to make a film.
The difficulty comes in 7 stages, each getting progressively harder:
- It's hard to come up with an idea worth writing.
- It's hard to write a script worth raising funds for.
- It's hard to raise funds for a film worth directing.
- It's hard to direct a film worth editing.
- It's hard to edit a film worth distributing.
- It's hard to distribute a film worth marketing.
- And it's hard to market a film against all other competing forms of art and entertainment. PERIOD.
* By "methods," I mean the way they developed, produced and funded their projects, I am not saying copy their directing methodology or their filmmaking style.
Quentin Tarantino had been working at Video Archives, a video store in Manhattan Beach, California, and originally planned to shoot the film with his friends on a budget of $30,000 in a 16 mm black-and-white format, with producer Lawrence Bender playing a police officer chasing Mr. Pink. Bender gave the script to his acting teacher, whose wife gave the script to Harvey Keitel. Keitel liked it enough to sign as a co-producer so Tarantino and Bender would have an easier job finding funding; with his assistance, they raised $1.5 million. Keitel also paid for Tarantino and Bender to host casting sessions in New York, where the duo found Steve Buscemi, Michael Madsen, and Tim Roth.
- Keep honing your craft (in writing, acting or filmmaking) by taking courses.
- Develop good relationships with people who know people that can get your film funded.
- Most importantly, write a script with juicy lines and stories that gets people who know people to show your script to them.