Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Old Rules Still Apply, They've Just Been Digitized

In a follow up to this post regarding the discussion over at Truly Free Film Angelo Bell commented:

"Indie filmmaking was about saying we didn't need Hollywood to make our movies. We've proven that. Now let's take it one step forward and say we don't need Hollywood to distribute our movies."

But we (and when I say "we" I mean the indie film community) are still hung up on the idea of acceptance and validation by the mainstream - "Going to the show," "Hitting the big time," "You're going to Broadway, kid. Your name up in lights."

So what's needed is a business model that means just about anyone can do it. Just add hard work and stir.

It's being done by musicians all the time. Are we going to let them get one up on us?


TheGamut said...

Don't worry. I think most "indie" musicians are the same way in regards to acceptance by the masses. They want to hit the big time and set their focus on that alone.

Me? I do it for kicks. The last thing I want is to get paid for it.

I think there are just more musicians out there because they can do it with a lot less planning and a lot less "producing" than a good indie film. It becomes a matter of statistics when you can see a number of indie musicians making a business out of it, which in turn, makes more people believe in it, which in turn, makes more indie people trying, which in turn raises the numbers of success, which feeds itself back into the formulas recursively in a geometric fashion. (All geometric recursions will either reach a stasis, explode towards infinity or collapse towards a point. Some never repeat even in a stable cycle. Yet, that is neither here nor there, I think.)

I have made and played music for pay. I loathed it. It felt so wrong; not like a prostitution or pornography kind of wrong, but wrong none the lesser. I do it for the love of the craft. I only wish I knew others around here that felt the same, but they all want to get paid and eventually do it as their only job (aka. "hit the big time") so they limit themselves to marketable concepts. Heck. Markets can be made. They do not necessarily need to already exist. Yes?

Anonymous said...


Phantom of Pulp said...

Great post, Bill.

Terrific reply, TheGamut

Any artist who worries about "acceptance" is going to create severely compromised work.

Those hoping to hit the "big time" live in a world of delusion because the Big Time is a factory, not an open slather co-operative for them to realize their dreams.

I have been making movies of some kind for a very long kind. Not all good. Not all bad.

What I have learned is that the majority of would-be filmmakers/directors are more interested in the idea of being a director and making lots of money than actually creating movies from the heart.

I say this because I know of several would-be's who cry constantly about not being able to get millions to make a movie, but when finding themselves in a position to make a modestly budgeted or low budget movie, pass on the opportunity.

A true filmmaker has a psychotic desire to create.

The irony is that these pathetic saps fail to realize that creating one of these low budgets projects will increase their chances of making The Big One (whatever the hell that is).

It is coming to pass that filmmakers will not need the Hollywood infrastructure to get movies distributed.

It makes me laugh that so many of these people covet the Hollywood distribution deal because most of these deals are comprised of clauses allowing Hollywood to rape you.

Markets CAN be made moreso now than ever because the mechanism is there (the internet) to create a level of awareness that has never existed before.

The bottom line is: A lot of "Hollywood" distribution companies are clueless about distributing anything that is slightly "alternative".

Stop worrying about what other people think. Most of them don't deserve the power you're giving them.