Thanks Consideringthepickle, those are some damn good questions… so here we go…
1. Is there a “finished” script? Obviously with a lot of CG the script will tend not to be as set in stone… which brings me to the next question:
No, there isn’t as yet a finished script, it is about half way through the first draft. There is however a 97 page synopsis for a feature length version of the film which I am adapting. So things are coming together quite quickly.
2. You said 95% will have CG. Will all the shots have live action? Or will there be some percentage of totally CG shots. Usually it’s a lot easier to do shots that are entirely CG.
Oh there will absolutely be some shots that are entirely computer generated… in fact the last third of the film will only need live action cutaways. However, a good deal of CGI augmentation will also be needed for almost all live action shots.
3. Is this going to be photo-realistic like Pirates of the Caribbean or are you open to something more stylized… or have you not decided -is that something you’re waiting for a concept artist to discuss?
Now the concept artist will have a lot of input in this matter, so yes I imagine it will be discussed at great lengths. I know the limitations of technology and our experience will affect the final product, but the world we create in this film has to seem as real as possible, so yes I have to say my inclination is toward photo-realism.
4. Have you thought about a plan for Distribution yet? Do you have any particular goals for the distribution of the film?
I am a fan of free distribution; it will be available for download via the web. Also; film festivals will be targeted, and if I can keep it to 23min TV would become an option… I want it out there, if we can recoup a little of the budget I would be ecstatic, but having people watch it is far more important.
5. Some background on yourself: Have you done any previous work? (Film/Art/Writing/whatever) and How devoted are you to actually completing the project? You don’t need to discuss your personal financial or living situation or anything on a public forum, but that would also be a question I’d want to ask… basically are you a professional? a student? a kid? a hobbyist? etc. What’s your deal really? If you’re a kid or a hobbyist that’s cool, but it’s just something good to know, like what kind of experience and/or knowledge of filmmaking/distribution etc. do you have in your regime? Or is this a totally a first time project?
First up, I am not employed in the film industry… much is the shame. I guess that should be, I am not YET employed in the industry… I have a regular, kinda dull, job but I have been a film-maker for many years.
The majority of my experience lies in Editing; I have been an Editor for about 15 years now. The nature of the Indie-film beast, in my personal opinion, requires more of a “jack of all trades” mentality however, and to that end I am also experienced (to varying levels) in Directing, Gaffing, Grip, Cinematography, Sound Recording, Sound Mixing and Compositing… and the list goes on. Excluding this film; I am currently in the middle of two projects, 1. I am shooting and editing a pilot for a television series, and 2. I am colour grading an independent feature film.
Oh, and I also hold a Diploma in film production.
On the financial side of things, well I’m a film-maker so of course I am poor(ish)… I have scrimped and saved and will have a few thousand dollars to cover shooting, it isn’t much but it will do.
6. Have you looked into funding sources? I know you said it was low-budget and there was no funding. Does this mean you’ve attempted to get funding and exhausted all the possibilities? If not, would you consider some funding options? (Pitching to investors… Crowdfunding Merchandize or Pre-Sales?)
Film funding in Australia is a little lacking, if your not making a film about people coming to terms with something then you’re not likely to get dollar one. I would rather self fund this film, hopefully with a little help from private investors, it does make life that little bit harder but it ensures complete creative freedom.
7. How much involvement will the artist(s) have in the project... on a range of total collaboration to totally following your orders where do you stand on that... will the artist have a say in story choices? in filming choices? in casting choices? in distribution decisions? in scene decisions?
One possibility though is completion and/or distribution funding, once the film is shot and edited with anamatics/incomplete CG in place more avenues of funding open up.
Well the answer lies somewhere in the middle, as Writer/Director my decision is ultimately final, but I am no jerk and have no delusions of grandeur. The Concept/Lead artist will have a great deal of influence (that’s why I am seeking their help so early) when it comes to creating the “world” portrayed in the film. In regards to things like casting and story-lines however, well that’s another story, I embrace collaboration and will consider suggestions/criticism from anyone involved in the film but in the end the buck stops with the Director.
8. If there really is no way to get a budget, will artists get a percentage of whatever profits the film makes?
To be perfectly honest the likelihood of independent short films making any money are slim to none, if it happens though (and my fingers are crossed) then absolutely yes there will be a profit sharing agreement in place. Once investors, if any, are repaid then the remaining money will be split, with 40% going toward the next film and 60% being divided fairly between all persons involved. That’s just a suggestion but I think it’s a decent plan.
So I hope that answered your questions, I’m sure I have just opened the flood gates for many more… which I love and look forward to fielding.