4 Minutes Of Crowdfunding Wisdom From 25 Filmmakers
4 Minutes Of Crowdfunding Wisdom From 25 Filmmakers — hear what they have to say.
Emily Best (Seed & Spark): The word ‘crowd-funding’ is a compound word. There are two words in that word and the first word is not there because it is a prettier word. It’s there because it’s a more important word.
Richard Botto (Stage 32): I just can’t stress it enough that especially when it comes to crowdfunding, it all comes down to relationships and it all comes down to building those relationships and keeping those relationships.
Sheri Candler (Author): I’m not saying you need millions of people but you need a core group of people because those are the ones who are going to help you spread the word. You’re not going to be able to spread via word of mouth all by yourself.
Brian Jun (Filmmaker): We’re all encouraged in our life that we can do whatever we want, that we are entitled to achieve our dreams and we can do “this” and we can do “that.” And with crowdfunding people think that “Oh, well now that’s the answer to my question. I just put my project up there and since I’m entitled to have a dream, I’m entitled to write a book or make a movie or be a ballet dancer or put on my theatre production. That people now are going to give me money.”
Spike Lee (Filmmaker): We shot SHE’S GOTTA HAVE IT in 1985. We were doing Kickstarter before there was Kickstarter! We just didn’t have the technology.
Alexis Kirke (Professor): Generating a fan base. Ah, now that’s the question. I’ve never solved the generating a fan-base question.
Ryan Koo (NoFilmSchool.com): I never would have launched a campaign for 6 figures if I hadn’t spent two years building an online audience with a website.
Jon Reiss (Author and Instructor): The way you structure your campaign will largely determine whether you are successful or not.
Alexis Kirke: I certainly know I’ve been on the other side of the crowdfunding thing. It’s been quite tempting to think “Wow, I could be part of this movie!” and the guy is not famous or anything but maybe it will be a successful movie and I’ll have been part of it.
Hunter Weeks (Filmmaker): I try my hardest to try to stay connected online wherever with people who are really reaching out to me. I don’t see why we shouldn’t be.
Etta Devine and Gabriel Diani (Filmmakers and Actors): It’s really surprising that no one gets back to you…so…I don’t know what that is?
Mike Hedge (Filmmaker): It’s a race. Your crowdfunding is like a real amazing time where it’s just like you can’t think about anything other than getting the word out and making an update video. And posting new things and getting people interested in trying to get film blogs to talk about it.
Merete Mueller and Christopher Smith (Filmmakers): I think one of the really lucky things about our project is that we had the tiny house community there ready to kind of help us get the word out.
Chad Diez and Art Hall (Filmmakers and Actors): Not having a good pitch video (to me) I feel like is…the ones I’ve seen I’m like “I would never donate to that because the video wasn’t good.” Whether it was production value or just the pitch wasn’t good. I just didn’t feel like it was a compelling enough story.
Marc Zicree (Author and Filmmaker): I put a couple months in on the video and part of it…one thing I recognized with Kickstarter that was very, very clear is that you have to have a personal touch.
Joke and Biagio (TV Producers): I would not have had a successful Kickstarter, we would not have had a successful Kickstarter campaign if we weren’t truly, 100% passionate about the film.
Patrick Shen (Filmmaker): We researched a lot of campaigns. We probably looked at about a 100 different campaigns. We watched all the videos, we looked at the rewards, the perk structure, all the text on the actual Kickstarter page.
Angel Valerio and Christopher Miles (Filmmakers and Actors): Sometimes you get discouraged. “Wow, I just sent like 1,000 emails and it’s still not moving!” and then “Oh, yeah! Somebody pledged.” I’m like “Okay, we’re good. Let’s keep going. Let’s keep going.”
Nicolas Alcala (Filmmaker and Speaker): I think for short films and books and albums and any other things, that if it’s [the campaign asking amount] below $30,000, it’s great. Over that [amount], you’re going to have a hard time. You might be lucky. But one out of a thousand is going to be successful and the rest is going to fail.
Andy Viner (Filmmaker): It does get people involved and creates an audience that wants to see your movie and that’s invaluable but there’s…I guess what I would say is that none of these things come without…you don’t gain something without giving something up.
Miguel Duran and Violeta Reina Duran (Filmmakers): That’s one of those cases where our entire momentum went back to zero and it was very hard not just to start up from that point but to start off from a really, really low point.
Judy Chaikin (Filmmaker): Well I think any pursuit that you do in life is filled with failures and successes and you often learn more from your failures than your success, so of course you have to pick yourself up, what else? Are you going to lie in the dirt the rest of your life? It’s not an option!