In talking with a mixture of private clients, FS members, and the Facebook community this past week one thing that seems to be going on right now is that everyone is ‘stuck’ somewhere. Stuck waiting to hear back from a distributor….stuck waiting to hear back from talent….stuck trying to find the money to make their film.
Listen up people – waiting to hear back from people and looking for money is never ending and is all part of the process. I don’t care where you’re at in your career … you’ll always be doing some version of waiting and looking – just at different levels and for varying periods of time. So might as well get used to it and learn how to work with it instead of against it.
One proactive thing you could probably do right now is to start looking for more projects to get involved in. I met with an A-list writer last week who is working on 3 projects at once and has 3 more in the hopper (yes that’s she’s writing!). As a ‘new’ Producer, I personally have 8 projects on my slate and am signing another 4 in the coming months. Big producers have dozens of projects on their slate at any given time.
So whether you’re a writer, director, or producer you need to have several irons in the fire all at once and firing on all cylinders which each one of them. If you’re going to be in a constant state of waiting anyway, you might as well have several projects at various stages of development and financing so that while you’re waiting for Project A, maybe Project B hits, or Project C moves forward, and you close a deal on Project D.
Also, I like to look at my list of projects first thing every morning and go down the list and figure out what I need to do on each of them to move things forward. Sometimes I’m in a holding pattern – waiting to hear back from talent or waiting for a writer to turn in a draft. On to the next project on my list – what can I do there… and so on. You get the idea, right?
Also, if you’re a writer in particular and waiting for a Producer to come on board… first of all ask yourself if you’re casting a wide enough net. Are you approaching at least a dozen potential producers who make sense for your project – even ones beyond your immediate circle of contacts? And in the mean time, you should be acting as your own producer…. are you approaching talent directly and working on getting attachments? I have a client right now doing this – all from a small town in New Zealand…. attaching Hollywood talent to a film with no financing in place and only one film under his belt. He’s acting as his own producer (with my gudiance) to get the job done. Next stop, he’ll be going after pre-sales.
I had another client tell me he was stuck because he can’t get a producer to respond. Why don’t you have other projects you’re pursuing simultaneously I wondered…. never put all your eggs in one basket.
Most importantly – TAKE ACTION on something every. single. day. Make a phone call, send an email, meet someone in person, and never stop learning. Go listen to the on-demand versions of my Distribution In Reverse & Film Financing 2.0 courses…. it’s all in there! Everything you need to get your project moving NOW.
So let me ask you this – Where are you stuck right now? Or what can you do right now to get un-stuck? I would love to hear from you in the comments section below…