Independent Film Financing

United States one-dollar bill

Today, I’m going to offer yet another bit of perspective on the whole question of how to raise money for movies.

As you may or may not know, independent film funding can be a little overwhelming. If you’ve ever dabbled in the business side of making a movie, you know what I mean. The first time I heard people talk about writing a business plan or offering a private placement memorandum, I suddenly felt like I was on another planet. And if you’re like most filmmakers, you would much rather focus on actually getting your movie made, instead of cold calling rich and successful people to set up random pitch meetings.

  • So, the first challenge you have in the world of film finance is: How do I find investors for my movie?
  • The second challenge is: How will my feature film provide enough ROI (return on investment) for my investor?

Assuming you’ve followed some of my previous advice on creating relationships with rich and successful people, even if you do make a favorable impression on a few rich folks, your potential film investors may still shy away from making an investment in your project. Why? Because without star talent, a known director, a film distribution outlet and an experienced crew – it’s very tough to answer the important question of ROI.

Your potential investors want to know how you plan on spending their money, how you plan on getting their money back, and when. Can you provide your investors with this information? If not, then you can understand why independent film financing, especially for your first feature, can be a pain in the butt.

However, having worked as an account executive for one of the biggest investment banks in the world, I would like to share some thoughts and end today’s article on a positive note. If you can come up with a plan that at least attempts to answer the question of ROI – then you’re in the ball park. While I can’t say it’s common, there are a few potential investors out there, for which their excess cash sometimes burns a hole in their pocket. These folks will assess the potential for gain and loss, and despite the risk (which you will always disclose and never hide!), they will still choose to do business with you.

I have a friend (who I’ll interview in a few weeks) – but anyway, he made a short film that went viral on the internet. One day he gets a call from a random multimillionaire who says he has always wanted to produce a movie. Suffice it to say, my buddy is now in pre-production on his first independent feature film.

Stranger things have happened. What’s important is that you keep pushing forward!

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If you are wondering how to get money for your movie – Almost every resource will tell you that you need a business plan. Very few resources will tell you how to actually go out, find prospective investors, qualify them, contact them, get a meeting and build a relationship.

Since getting money for movies was such a frustrating experience for me, I spent the last few months creating: The Independent Producer’s Guide To Financing Your Movie. In it, YOU will gain valuable insider experience so you can avoid my past mistakes, find investors and make your movie. To learn more CLICK HERE


  1. Amir Goshtasbi says

    I’m really confused. There are lots of resources out there for financing and I’m totally confused.

    Now, I have a plan for long feature film , my very young team is ready , script is almost ready , I am ready but the thing is that’s my very first feature.

    I’m pretty out of money (about 1K in my account) and I need totally and only 15k to shoot and end up this movie. The butt of the problem is that the film is an avant-garde artwork. I believe in it but producers or investors are in dogmatic way of thinking.

    I actually understand them because in my country movie gross means nothing and just think of an independent avant-garde artwork.

    I strongly have no idea what the business is but I believe my movie is a bomb. I’ll fight for it. I’m 20, and I’m student . I must make my movie. I just pray that you have a single idea except begging. Because if my movie won a prize I need it and I want it myself. Because producers that I’ve met are so cruel that they want to have everything for themselves. I really don’t want begging anyone.

  2. says

    Great post, really insightful and explains a lot to a novice like me about how things work as far as ‘actually’ getting a film made. Thanks for sharing!

  3. says

    Great post, really insightful and explains a lot to a novice like me about how things work as far as ‘actually’ getting a film made. Thanks for sharing!

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