I hope you had a great week!
On Monday I published a post on The Right Package, Talent Attachments, & More , and truthfully that remains one of the most popular topics around here for some time. And I’m happy to oblige since much of my day to day these days revolves around packaging talent and financing for projects I’m producing.
SXSW also wrapped up this week and from all I’ve read, it looks like good time were had by all. SXSW isn’t traditionally an ‘acquisitions’ festival so I didn’t track any big deals or anything that took place, but it’s always a great festival to exhibit at as it really elevates your film and gives it the SX pedigree which buyers seem to really like.
While domestic buyers were busy at SXSW, I did a lot of work with my Film Market clients for upcoming Cannes and making deals with foreign sales agents on their films. As it turns out, foreign sales agents have become a lot more picky as of late (which is ultimately a good thing!) and as I study the deals and sales projections that come in, things actually seem to be getting more ‘fair’ for the filmmaker. I don’t know, maybe all this transparency of the internet has raised the bar for what sales agents have become. I like it!
This week I also had the chance to catch up with a Producer friend of mine who after many years of producing with A-list directors and stars, still finds herself shaking her head over newer filmmakers who have been given incredible opportunities, that just don’t realize it. She recounted a story whereby she was attached to a low budget indie for two years, tapped into her agency relationships to get talent attached, gave her time and expertise to the project, only to have the filmmakers find financing through other contacts and then try and kick her off the project.
Stories like this always make me cringe because as a Producer myself, I can completely emphasize. A team is a team, and when someone else comes on a project and then advises you to kick someone off, I would always be wary of that. For me personally, when I come on a project that already has producers attached, it’s more about keeping the existing team in tact and seeing if and where there’s room to add more. This goes back to my thesis on over-packaging a project…. sometimes you find there’s no room to come on board a project and that’s fine too. But to come on to something and demand people be removed who have contributed in one way or another (I hope!) thus far, just isn’t appropriate.
Other than all that, I’ve mentioned before I’m deep in pre-prod on a feature that shoots next month. I look forward to sharing behind the scenes with you guys as I go along. For now, you can subscribe to follow the journey via my Instagram feed and Startup Filmmaker FB Group.
And that’s been my week! What about you guys? Let me know what you’re up to in the comments section below…