I hope you’re having a great week!
I promised another EFM/Berlin dispatch and from the emails that are coming in, I guess you guys like these. So I’m thrilled to hear that!
Before I go into some final take aways though, let me give you a reminder that the Film Financing Essentials 50% off Flash Sale ends tomorrow.
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And now on to the EFM Dispatch….
So in addition to my take aways from the other day, there’s also something new that happened this year in Berlin that really took off and that’s Drama Days for TV series.
Actually, the Drama Days program isn’t new itself, but this year it really took off – to the point that it’s becoming more than just a showcase of works in progress and leaning into ‘TV market’ territory.
Now, they are clearly not trying to compete with true TV markets like MIPTV and MIPCOM, but EFM (and other markets like Cannes) have the potential to become a real buyers and sellers market for upscale series which as you know, are now chock full of film stars anyway…. so it’s all come full circle.
At this year’s EFM the screenings for these series were over sold and people clamoring to get in. Major stars and directors are part of these series, and it’s just an organic extension of what’s going on at the film market anyway, so it makes sense.
Incidentally I know many of you are starting to dabble in series – so what does this all mean for you?
On the surface it means there’s more outlets to showcase and sell your work, even works in progress to buyers who can come on as co-producers or networks pre-buying territories.
Below the surface however you’ll see that these series being screened are extremely high end and come with high end sales agents attached to them. So while I’m not saying it’s necessarily easy to jump in and start having your series screen at Berlin or Cannes, the opportunities are opening up….and my take is that for the right material (read: notable book adaptations) and directing, acting, and/or producing/sales agent team behind you, it’s definitely in the realm of reality.
In fact, the way I would approach it if I had a series I was developing that I wanted to target for a major film festival/market is I’d probably work on getting a meaningful sales agent or major agency on board first, to help package it as high end as possible and have them assist with funding the work in progress AND leverage their clout at the film festivals/markets to get a screening slot. Obviously this in itself is a loaded proposition and the subject of another email as there’s a lot to understand about getting into business with a sales agent or agency at this stage of the game and where you fit into that.
But for now, let’s assume that is a path worth going down…methodically…one step at a time :)
By the way, this is all happening outside of Berlin and Cannes too….at Toronto and even Sundance….so bottom line is high end Drama series are infiltrating the film world and taking center stage. (and have been for a while but it’s really coming to a head right now)
And it’s great to have another outlet to produce things don’t you think? I’d love to hear your thoughts – hit me up in the comments section below…
Who of you are developing high end series and would this strategy fit in with what you’re doing?