AUTHOR SUBJECT: Some good read...
Sv Bell | Black Flag Pictures
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Posted: 6/8/2017 10:18:29 AM
Indie filmmaker talks about how he raised $150k for his film, and never saw a dime coming back.
The usual story...!


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Posted: 6/8/2017 11:34:32 AM

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Posted: 6/8/2017 1:35:00 PM
I think I understand Sv's point but the fact still remains that nearly all underfunded films suck. Especially if they try to emulate a "real" film.  They need to go with their strenghs and also embrace their weaknesses..... Plus, Netfix is just crawing with films that seemed to have enough money to meet minimum standards but they aren't what I would call good films. At best, they are the equivealent of  drinking luke warm water.

Now if you'll excuse me I have to chase those damn kids off my lawn....

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Posted: 6/8/2017 3:00:55 PM
 Some very valuable information there indeed. Thanks for posting Sv.

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Posted: 6/8/2017 4:18:05 PM
"OK, now that I have actually read the article let me start over.

It sounded to me like the film makers were whining becasue their movie did not make any money.  There was a sense on entitlement in the writing. Because they believed they had so many things going for them, they would surely enjoy some amount of success,,, but they didn't. Not a penny.  How could this be?

In the article they confronted the possibility that the film wasn't any good but instead of actually considering the possibility, they fell back on pointless questions; 

"I respond with two questions: 1) Have you ever seen a terrible yet profitable movie? 2) Have you ever seen a brilliant movie that never made a dime because no one ever heard of it?" 

The answer to both questions is "yes" ,, but what does that have to do with thier film?

Now take a look at these numbers they disclosed;

• Cable VOD: Rented 850 times. $1.56 per rental. $1.29 per rental back to distributor.
• Amazon: Rented 157 times. $1.99 per rental. $1.63 per rental back to distributor.
• Amazon Prime: Streamed 3,855 times. $0.01 per stream. $0.085 per stream back to distributor. (Yes, that’s less than one cent per stream)
• iTunes: Rented 46 times. $2.79 per rental. $2.30 back to distributor.
• Vudu: Rented 107 times. $3.49 per rental. $2.48 back to distributor.
• “Life Tracker” was also rented, less frequently, on Youtube, XBox, Google Play, Sony, and iN Demand.

Wow! sounds like they was no way to make any money but, just suppose instead of making pennies and fractions of pennies per view, they made $1 per view.  We know the movie was viewed or rented 5015 plus some more on youtube, blah blah blah....  That's still only $5,015.00... Not exactly success.

"But since we had no money for advertising, no one knew the movie was there unless someone involved in the project told them personally."

What the fuck? You mean to tell me that your marketing plan didn't include advertising?,,, and more importantly, do you mean to tell me you actually found suckers to put up real money without ever asking how you would make sure the film was known?,,, Maybe they assumed Amazon and the rest were going to advertise for them,,, and maybe they would have but.........

I took the time to find this movie on Amazon Prime,,,, and I watched it.. To be fair to the film makers I did not watch the entire thing.  I didn't feel I had to.  I sampled the entire movie from opening credits to end credits looking for specific things.  I stopped at some dialog scenes, most of the movie is dialog, and watched... I listened to the sound quality, judged the videography, lighting, sets, costumes, acting,,,,,,,  I spotted at least one old age make up that made me cringe.. 

My opinion of the movie is that it was unwatchable. It was uninteresting and lazy and offered nothing.  To be completely honest, Mike Cervello's movie, I Creator, was 10 time more interesting.  This movie had nothing. There was one hot chick and she was a pretty good acress but she wasn't enough.. They had an actor that I think I recognized from the tv show Cheers.  The guy who played Eddy LeBec, Carla's hockey playing husband who died in a Zambonie accident. .. Not enough.  Sorry but the movie is a complete waste. It looked bad, sounded bad, had no visuals to keep your interest during the long and boring dialogs. Nothing. 

Their movie made no money and was never noticed because it was terrible.  I don't wonder why over 40 film festivals rejected it.  It sucked.

Let me elucidate on a piont I made earlier; yes, there are terrible films that make money.  Movies like Laser Blast, The Room, almost any John Waters film.  These movies are not good but they still offer something that draws people in even if it's just to laugh at them. John Waters early work could not have been worse BUT it still had something...  The guys who made this little turd, Life Tracker, didn't give me any reason at all to want to look past how bad the film really is.  It was just so blindingly bad that had I accidentally turned it on while sitting around looking for something to watch, I would have turned it off after about 1 minute.

Their budget was at least 5 times Mike Conway's budget on Excile yet Excile is so profoundly superior to it in every way that I can't even find the words to truly express my opinion.

So what I'm getting at is, this is just a case of some guys who were blessed with the opportunity to make a movie with a small but decent budget and they blew it... They probably spent the money trying to look like a film production company rather than put their egos on hold and put every dollar up on the screen...  This movie looks like they shot it with a $200 camcorder from Walmart..

No excuses fellas.  You're movie didn't make any money because it wasn't any good.... Period.

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Posted: 6/8/2017 10:05:13 PM

Mike Conway
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Posted: 6/9/2017 12:26:12 AM
That was a comprehensive review, James.  I don't feel the need to look any further at this.

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Posted: 6/9/2017 5:21:17 AM
It still doesn't make sense to me that on a planet with billions of people, and access to a majority of them via internet, it is apparently impossible to get, let's say, half a million of them to watch a movie for a dollar. Hell, I think it would be just as hard to get them to watch it for free. Why??? Between youtube, facebook, forums, ad-share banners plus, magazines, radio stations, etc,,, it should be possible to get people to notice your movie for a few seconds. For those few seconds that you've got their attention, if they like what they see, why wouldn't some of them actually want to watch the movie?.. I must be completely out of touch with the modern world. Actually, no. I get it. We are now in an age of media glut. There is so much out there. Movies, humorous 10 second clips, youtube channels. Seriously, a lot of the youtube clips I see are 100 times more entertaining than any movie I have ever seen. Sure, there's no character development or real story but it is entertaining as all hell. Wow! maybe the indie scene is really dead,, I mean, as far as money making goes. I mean ANY MONEY. Maybe Marius is right; just make movies because you want to and don't expect anything out of it...
Sv Bell | Black Flag Pictures
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Posted: 6/9/2017 7:13:30 AM
The thing all (or most) indie filmmakers forget when they want a film to be a success is the advertising budget. Rule of thumb, that marketing expense must be the same amount as the film's production itself. But no indie does that. They struggle to find money to make the film happens and once they have the zero copy in hand, they're out of money to tell the world it exists. You have $50k budget to make a film? Spend $25k in production, and $25k in advertising. Even the major blockbusters do that. With a $100M dollar production comes a $100M dollar advertising campaign.
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Posted: 6/9/2017 8:53:33 AM

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Posted: 6/9/2017 10:35:56 AM
No. That's not what you said.... You said what I said you said.
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