Everywhere I look I see filmmakers waiting for their knight in shining armor to show up in the form of a film investor. They want someone who will just write them one check to fund their film’s budget – meanwhile they haven’t even accurately portrayed a recoupment scenario to pay the poor investors back (but that’s a subject for another blog post!)
What I wanted to address today is the fact that waiting for your knight in shining armor of an investor to show up without doing the work to make an attract investment opportunity for someone, is akin to waiting for prince or princess charming to show without working on yourself first. It just ain’t gonna happen!
So why do I bring this up? Well I want to show you that there’s steps you can take to make your film investment a more attractive opportunity for investors while also doing some legwork yourself to make it a no-brainer for an investor to come on board.
So where to begin…. well let’s take the 4 financing components I’ve been speaking about for the last couple blog posts.
• Partnering with production companies
• Tax incentives
• Crowd Funding
I’m a big proponent of bringing at least one of these four components to the table before approaching a private investors for funds. Why? Because:
#1 it shows that you’ve done some of the nitty gritty work already and made an effort to bring some assets to the project, and
#2 because you may be able to approach an investor asking for less money than you would if you didn’t do some of this initial financing work yourself.
In other words, help them help you! Get out there and roll up your sleeves and do some of the initial film financing work yourself so you can come to the table with something other than an business plan and an empty bank account.
I’ll give you a practical example of this principle in action – I was meeting with some potential investors at AFM on a project I’m Producing and they were savvy film investors so of course they asked if I had already lined up tax incentives? How about a Producing partner? Any pre-sales? Did I run budget scenarios in 3 or 4 states/countries to see which penciled out the lowest taking into account currency and tax rebates? They didn’t ask about crowd funding because I don’t think they know what that is (LOL) but I’m sure if I said I had some development funds already in the bank they wouldn’t care where it came from!
Now what I was thinking the whole time is that it would have been great to have all this stuff lined up in advance, and be able to close the investors on the spot. I want you to have that same level of preparedness when you go to meet with potential investors! (you like my reference at the top of a hand out…. looking for a handout?).
What do you think? Please let me know in the comments section below….