Pixel Productions recently wrote a blog about how to get a film funded. Feel free to read it here. Due to the popularity of the article, Pixel Productions wrote a little bit more detail about the various ways to get your film funded.
Making a movie is just like starting any business, and the first thing you need is a business plan. To get an idea of your expenses, take a look at other films similar to yours and use those to set the scale. Break down the various costs of what it will take to create the film. Look into the costs of hiring crew, renting equipment, paying talent, securing locations, marketing, and post production. There are many different costs that go into producing a feature length film, and depending on the scale of the film and the talented people involved with making it, the cost of your film will vary greatly.
When someone is thinking about investing in a film, they want to see a breakdown of where their money will be spent, and how it will be allocated. They do not want to spend millions of dollars if you are going to hire a crew that is inexperienced. They also don’t want to invest a few hundred thousands of dollars if they think the film will need much more than that.
The first step to getting a film funded is having a breakdown of the costs involved with making the film. Once you do that, there are a few ways you can go about finding the funding for your feature length film.
Self-Funding: Most filmmakers don’t go the self-funding route, but there is an upside. Self-financed movies mean you don’t have to deal with investors. However, the filmmakers doing things this way side step the development cycle and there won’t be anyone to tell them that their script sucks (if it does).
Crowd Funding: Get some rewards together and offer them to your friends hoping to entice them into making a donation to your project. You need a really good plan in order to successfully approach crowd funding. Crowd funders are not investing because they want a cash return. They want something else such as a credit, a feeling of contribution, and access to exclusive content. You MUST think of them as investors and deliver on your side of the agreement.
Music: Get well known musicians to create an original musical score for your movie and allow you to use their name in promoting the movie. Not only do musicians have their own following, but also their record deals do not include music soundtrack scores meaning they can earn additional revenue from your movie.
Product Placement: Team up with brand managers and get cash for including their products on set. The product exposure the brand enjoys has a far greater value than the cost of the product placement and is generally seen to be cheaper than comparative advertising on TV or print.
Government Funding: Many countries now have attractive tax and investment incentives for filmmakers. Europe’s MEDIA programme has twenty-odd programs for media and filmmakers. Apply for the funding and lobby the decision makers until you hit gold. Many euro filmmakers design a business plan around the rules and regulations surrounding the MEDIA money.
Pre-Sales: Pre-sale agreements are pre-arranged and executed contracts made with distributors before the ﬁlm is produced. These agreements are based on the strength of the project’s marketability and sales potential in each given territory.