Features

30 Quintessential Books for Independent Filmmakers

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Ever wonder what, exactly, independent filmmakers – both aspiring and established – should be reading? Look no further than The Independent‘s 30 Quintessential Books for Independent Filmmakers. Here, we list the top must-owns, including Independent Feature Film Production, The Filmmaker’s Handbook, Sidney Lumet’s Making Movies, and From Reel to Deal. The list is broken down… Read more »

Capturing Controversy: A Look at Activist Filmmaking

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It’s been nearly 10 years since the streets of Seattle hosted the World Trade Organization Ministerial Conference and the subsequent chaos of the police response to the massive public protest, which turned into the so-called “battle on free speech in the name of free trade.” The event marked a significant phase of the anti-globalization movement—and… Read more »

Film-Friendly State: Shooting in Michigan

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From New Mexico to Massachusetts, from Michigan to California, state and local governments are luring film-production business by passing increasingly competitive tax-incentive policies. Michigan recently joined the party in April 2008, with an unprecedented 42 percent return. Getting money back is crucial, but it’s not the only reason to choose a destination for your shoot… Read more »

Sustaining Big Projects through Small Gigs

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A machine’s dial turns, and a white powder is added to a spinning beaker of water as a woman’s voice overhead talks about toothpaste and animal testing. It looks like a documentary you might find on PBS, but instead, it’s a commercial for Tom’s of Maine. Producer Gita Pullapilly and Director Aron Gaudet, of Dungby… Read more »

Film Journal: The Making of an Independent Feature

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Filmmaker Valerie Weiss will share her experiences of financing, making, and marketing her first independent feature film Losing Control in this monthly film journal. On May 20, 2009, I sent an email out to my friends and family announcing that I was raising $200,000 to make my first feature film, a quirky romantic comedy called… Read more »

Three Approaches to Marketing an Independent Film

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Independent filmmakers don’t have the luxury of the publicity divisions employed by studios. Yet smart filmmaker know that a film’s marketing is crucial to its success or failure—and doing it well requires an enormous amount of time and effort. So, they tap the passion, wherewithal, determination, and moxie that drives them to make films in… Read more »

How Filmmakers Can Beat the Recession

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As the recession continues to cast a shadow on the American economy, Hollywood studios are emerging as one of the few success stories. Audiences seeking an entertaining reprieve from layoffs and pay cuts are bringing theaters increased ticket sales and revenue and giving the film industry a “recession proof” reputation. Unfortunately, few realize that this… Read more »

How the Recession Hits Independent Film

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A weak economy is often said to be good for Hollywood. Movie going is cheap entertainment, so ticket sales typically rise in a recession. But what about the world of independent film? Film festivals are scaling back, indie directors are being forced to do more with even less than usual, and producers are finding that… Read more »

The Sarasota 350: Reject This!

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“I don’t think we should see each other anymore.” “It’s not you, it’s me.” “I just want to be friends.” “Thanks, but no thanks.” However it’s put, rejection sucks. It makes us question our worth and, yes, even our very existence. It happens when we get dumped, passed over for a job, or, if you’re… Read more »