When people consider becoming a filmmaker, they rarely look at it as if they’re opening a small business. The thought is that they create art first, and the money will follow.
But what if you chose filmmaking as your small business?
This choice would be as opposed to any other small business! A deli, a print shop, a dry cleaner.
Now, more than ever, is the time to consider your filmmaking career as your small business.
Filmmaking As Your Small Business
Let’s start with some motivation. Check out this video:
Let’s first talk about the old “studio system” way of doing things.
In the studio system, the business revolves around asking a lot of folks for permission.
- “I finished this great screenplay. It’s high concept and awesome!”
- “Would you please read my screenplay?”
- “Can we have a meeting?”
- “Did you read my screenplay?”
All of which results in a lot of this: “We have decided to pass at this time.”
Don’t Ask For Permission
As an independent filmmaker, many of us also suffer from a similar permission based way of doing business.
- “Mr. Investor, if we are lucky this movie will get into Sundance.”
- “If we are really lucky, we will get a great a sales agent offer.”
- “And if we are really lucky, we might get a distribution deal.”
- “But if we are really, really lucky we will get a 3 picture studio deal, and we will live happily ever after.”
And that got me thinking about this talk about modern moviemaking. Can we now consider movie making a small business?
I mean, if you think about it, all you need to start a small business is an idea, some start up cash, raw material, production and a customer base – and a way to sell whatever it is you’re selling. And unlike years past, non-discriminatory video on demand marketplaces provide that… So what would modern moviemaking as a small business look like:
- We have a screenplay with a strong, well defined concept.
- We know our target audience and how to reach them.
- We know how to make a great film (or believe we can!)
- We will need to sell to a sales agent or distributor and return a certain amount of dollars (defined as X) to recoup our investment.
Why should we over-complicate our filmmaking? Can Modern Moviemaking be your next small business? If you’d like to get started, you may as well join Filmmaking Stuff HQ.
You see, it takes more than just having an idea, or even having a way to make a movie to qualify you to become a business that makes money. You need to know about sales, distribution, the marketplace, and how to get your film out there.
Just like any other business, you need to plan out all these steps to be successful!