If you are in the film biz and you keep up to date with what is going on, you will know the small indie world of filmmaking is dying. Read many articles like this. http://popwatch.ew.com/popwatch/2008/06/independent-fil.html
Why are small films dying? They can be made cheap but its not cost effective for distributors to plug millions into marketing when people are flocking to the blockbusters. It’s a mathetical problem. There is also a flood of indie films because of low cost technology, but most of them are shit, just like most Hollywood films are shit. It’s a “script” biz, but with very few good script writers.
Is this a depressing time to be a filmmaker? No! It’s the MOST EXCITING TIME! I love big dumb Hollywood flicks just like the next person. The best one’s of course. “The Dark Knights”, “Terminator” etc. But we all know that after a while you want to see human character driven stories. Offbeat tales, original takes on old genres, simple stories, or just far out niche filmmakers like David Lynch.
My point! The audiences will never die for small films. EVER! How can I be sure? As long as human beings have problems, there will be a market for stories. Especially in a world that’s increasingly hostile, confusing, dangerous, disturbed, and unpredictable. Ok, a lot of fear comes from world events that seem to beyond our power. Terrorism, Global warming, political unrest etc.
In reality, I think what is really scary is the dysfunctional nature of human beings in general. We are more likely to die of depression, booze, drugs, overeating, unexciting comfort living. But ironically a lot of us worry about dying in a lighting in a bottle scenerio, terror attacks, catching a virus or plane crashes etc. Our worst enemy is always ourselves. Even though we might not realise it.
My point! Little character driven stories, whether social comment films, genre, or themed entertainment stories all deal with these dysfucntional issues we have. So why would we ever want to be without those types of films. Sure, we all want to get on that big rollercoaster and forget all our troubles for a quick escape, but lots of people will always look for stories they can relate to, identify with.
The challenge with filmmakers is to start writing good scripts. People get too caught up with technology. All the stars, money, marketing budgets can’t rescue Hollywood when they make a bad film. So its the same with small films. Just because you can make them for the price of a burger, does not mean shit! You need a fresh script, great characters. If you have that, then people will watch that between their blockbusters.
Its an amazing time for filmakers. The guys before us had to raise a lot of money to make a film, then hand it over to distributors. Which was fine if you made a carreer overnight in your first few films. But most didn’t. Now we can make films for almost nothing, and market with well thought out viral campaigns. We can also self distribute direct to that market. Sure it’s not easy, but it shouldn’t be! And if you are good, the Hollywood sharks will also call. It’s REALLY REALLY EXCITING!
Indies are not dying. Want to know the truth. HOLLYWOOD IS DYING! The monster has got bigger, so they have to feed it more and more. Blockbusters are going to get even more bigger, and to the point they will just not be cost effective anymore too.
It will be an industry that really just produces 3D style themed parks, gaming, reality of you being “there” experiences. Which is cool, but the magic of “story telling” will be gone! And who will fill that gap market? Indie filmmakers! The smart one’s who have learned every aspect of the business.
I am going to get out there and get my audiences. It might take a few films, I need to cultivate a global fanbase for my work, but it is doable with a little talent and a lot of drive. I also might have to get into Hollywood too for a bit to build a fanbase, but I sincerely believe the independent filmmakers can rise from the ashes. But ONLY if we all get out heads out of our navels, and get biz and web savvy!
Thanks for reading