There’s never enough, time, light… OR MONEY! It’s an old film cliché, but no matter the scale of your production, this little aphorism has a ring of truth that any seasoned producer will relate to. Money is they word here, as with more money you could theoretically buy more time and light. But with more […]
Archive | Budgeting
Guerilla Film Makers Masterclass Alumni Rhys Davies: Micro Budget Horror Case Study, Released This Weekend!
This weekend has seen the release of ‘Zombie Undead’, a micro budget horror film made by a film maker, Rhys Davies, who I first met a few years ago on my Guerilla Film Makers Masterclass. His journey and film is a classic example of micro budget film making, a true ‘micro crew’ production. In advance […]
Failing to plan is planning to fail… Film making success lies in pre-production
I am spending the weekend building and updating my presentation for The Guerilla Film Makers Masterclass on June 4th and 5th. (90% sold out now, so don’t wait if you want to come, and use the discount code CHRISJONESBLOG to get it for £60, reduced from £119.00 – go here http://www.guerillamasterclass.com) And I wanted to […]
Why costume, makeup and production design is so important to your film
Now that the dust is settling on our ‘Wedding’(film which we shot on 5D last week) I wanted to share some thoughts on certain members of our crew, namely the creative design departments. We live in a time that is obsessed by the ‘the camera’, the formats, the lenses, the kit… I know why and […]
Micro Budget Film Making Law Number 8… Get A Single Shooting Location To Fulfill Multiple Story Locations
If you want to make the most out of your limited resources, look at the locations you have and tailor your screenplay to match what is available. I learned a long time ago that moving a cast and crew from one location to another is akin to pushing an elephant up a hill. When scheduling […]
A Masterclass In Microbudget Film Making – Interview with ‘Paranormal Activity’ writer and director Oren Peli
Looking back at Paranormal Activity, the poster boy for microbudget filmmaking, what can we learn without just saying ‘it’s like Paranormal Activity’ and will be as successful (which I hear all too often)? First off, I have to say just how impressed I am with the film. Oren Peli managed to keep up pace, tension […]
Shooting Steadicam and Low Budget Aerial Shots using Canon 5D MkII
As the independent film world explodes DSLR filming, all manner of new kit has been emerging – camera support rigs, camera movement rigs, follow focus, ND filters, lenses… Two of the more innovative and entertaining evolutions are this helicopter rig (right and video above) and the SegWay rig (below). The Helicopter rig comes out of […]
Jon Reiss’ Tip of the Day 5 – Budget for Distribution and Marketing
Continuing Jon’s tips of the day as we run up to the Distribution on 2010 Workshop on May 8th / 9th. Over to Jon. Jon Reiss’ Tip of the Day 5 – Budget for Distribution and Marketing In order to successfully execute a marketing plan for your film, a budget must be developed in tandem […]
Can you afford to release YOUR film in a cinema and take just £86?
Over the past few days there has been much chatter about a film that was released in UK theatres this weekend. You can watch the trailer here. It’s called ‘Motherhood’, stars Academy Award nominee Uma Thurman, UK star Minnie Driver, and TV show ‘ER’ helmer Anthony Edwards. Here’s the plot outline from IMDB is… In […]
Film Makers, keep your overhead low and rent a small office!
This weekend was spring cleaning day in the Living Spirit office at Ealing Studios. Those of you who have visited my office will know that it’s more like a strange little ‘Harry Potter’ hobbits hole of a cupboard than that of a film production office. And that suits me just fine. I learned a long […]
Does the National Minimum Wage (NMW) mean the end of micro budget film making the UK?
Let me start by saying, I don’t like polarised positions and I don’t like being drawn into debate where parties end up demonising each other. I seek to unite and not to divide. In that spirit, I have been asked to get involved in a very important debate on the National Minimum Wage in the […]
Do you have £10k to make a horror movie?
During the Cannes Film Market, I recorded an audio podcast with Derrin Rammage from Maxim Media, an Arizona based sales company that specialises in ultra low budget horror films – and when I mean ultra low budget, I mean it, kind of around $20k! He always has a huge catalogue of titles that to my […]
The Accounts For Gone Fishing Are Done!
In an entire day of HELL – can I say that loud enough – HELL!!!!! – the accounts for Gone Fishing have been done. It started at 9am this morning with a pre breakfast meeting with my accountant, before a day of paper sifting, through receipt after receipt. The actual GF accounts are really what […]
Accounts… where did the money go?
It’s getting to the time where I need to file my VAT quarter, which means I will need to go through all the receipts and invoices on the spike in my office. This is not a job I enjoy. In fact, most people just bundle it off to the accountants! But I am going to […]
Gone Fishing gets its 100th contributor!
We hit our 100th contributor last night (thank you Wendy!), bringing the total raised so far to… £19,685! Blimey! I mean really, BLIMEY! We are still short though, so if you know anyone who may want to come on the course or come to the premiere, click here. I have been working on the £100 […]
The budget is in…
Producer, Sabina Sattar, has spent the last week tallying up the budget. We have gone over budget. I knew we had so during the shoot as a number of problems came up and I just sanctioned them, saying we can figure out how to deal with it once we have it all in the can. […]
Traditionally, on low budget films, you always have trouble getting certain crew members. Stills photographers and sound recordists are usually toughest. We were very lucky as we had Ro Heap record the sound excellently, and Mark Reeve took the stills. I only just took delivery of Marks pictures and I am blown away. Not only […]
I spent most of yesterday and last night updating the schedule, which has gone through several major revisions already. The first one was done by Producer, Ivan Clemments, who then had to leave for two weeks, and it was subsequently revised by Sabina Sattar, who stepped into his shoes as acting producer. The schedule then […]