Friday, September 6, 2013

On Crowd-funding and how to set expectations

On Crowd-funding and how to set expectations,

For more information visit: The Top 10 Myths of Crowdfunding: According to Indiegogo

On Crowdfunding:

There's a little more to be drawn from this. Pitching to a crowd can be impersonal. If the only people that know you personally from your outreach are broke filmmakers like yourself then financing this way can be appear counter-intuitive.

Now lets talk about buzz, momentum, heat, or whatever that thing is. I'm still not sure what makes one idea more exciting than another. What excites me most about a script is whether or not anyone believes it'll be relevant (too few in my community are actively submitting and so we don't really know what competition might be like).  But a general audience approached as part of an outreach or grassroots campaign needs to be brought into the momentum.  What are we most worried about if, as writer-directors for example, we go the distance and try to get out there in front of a bunch of strangers?  Do we have practical goals?  Here's my take on what it means to be an audience member:

I take new concepts as a way to learn about the lives of others. If the filmmaking is done properly, I'm immersed in the world and that's it. In general one pays attention and takes away what they can. Filmmakers are just communicating ideas and I never think about one being more effective than another, I just try to pay attention to what they're saying.  And either they are effective or they aren't.  It's quite possible I wasn't their target audience.  So did they test the concept appropriately and are their creative decisions actually decisions?

Entertainment films, let's say, have their agenda and we base the quality of these films on how well they respond to the expectations they have set. Everyone's a critic. If the filmmaking is done properly, it may not seem genius but competent and I at least can enjoy that, knowing what it takes.

I do not make a very discerning audience, and little more an investor (is the crew competent? are you absolutely thrilled to shoot it?  do you know what it takes to shoot it?  does anyone with experience believe you? Yes, OK then!), but as a creative producer I would invest myself heavily on every stage once involved and so for me compatibility is important. Personalities have to get along: crew with director, director with story, story with producer, producer with market, all of the above with some sensible taste - I mean in general when something is worth doing you feel it.

My point is that people have to like you and be enthused by how earnest you are. If you're not true to your vision cause your vision is fluff, it'll come to light.  If you've no energy for the job, you can't lead.  It'll show up on screen and the audience will know.  They come to believe your world and share in the excitement and the logic with which you're pursuing this project. You need to campaign long enough to get the right level of sympathy behind you and that has just as much to do with who you are as it would do with what you're project is about.  The good news is if you're clear and consistent to your target audience, word of mouth is a shoe in.

By this process, both a mass appeal or niche appeal can be conceived by doing that thing which most people are terrified by, exposing yourself. Be human, be real, be intimate and do enough of development and prepro work so that people start engaging their imaginations as early as possible.

Let's get what we came for,
C.M. Sanchez III