At some point you have to validate your film! You have to test your screenplay, business plan, and your vision. You will be embarking on a 2-5 year journey from script to distribution without question. Minimum! Before you mortgage your home (yes I’ve seen this happen before), get into a divorce, or put yourself and your love ones in financial stress be honest with your film. Force yourself to have tough skin and get serious feedback. Even if you have to pay for it. Why invest hundreds of thousands dollars or millions on an unproven film concept? That is not including the hundreds of hours you will never see a penny from.
As an indie film producer be as creative and frugal as humanly possible. Spend a few hundred dollars to test your film on the low end or with a budget of $5,000.00 or less. Consider getting professional script coverage, feedback from an established producer, or do a proof of concept trailer for your film.
For under $5,000.00 you should get;
- Proof of concept trailer
- Spec Photography
- Mock Poster
- Concept Art Illustrations
- Mood Reel
- Script Coverage (a least 3)
- Producer Script Coverage
- Social media marketing
- Pitch Deck
Once you have that material you can showcase it to the world slowly and pay attention to what reactions, comments, or excitement you create. This is the same material you can use to get investors, plan a successful crowdfunding campaign, get sponsorships, product placement, or actor commitments.
This is also a clever way to do social media promotions by doing Facebook live videos, BTS stills/footage, Instagram Story’s, interviews, and the beginning stages of building your audience.
You will quickly tell if this material resonates with people outside your circle of family/friends. It is a perfect time to collect data, stats, and intel on who the material is connecting with and what medium is working best for them.
Think long and hard before you spend a single dollar. 10x each cent . You’re an indie film producer. Not Harvey Weinstein.