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Every production needs a website. It needs to have a signature image, a poster image, that defines what the film is about. You should test your signature image on your target market to find the one that they like most. A signature image should speak “loud and clear” to your target market. With a sequel, your signature image may be nothing more than a white poster with the title on it, because that’s all your target market needs to read in order to know they want to go. With a first film, your image needs to communicate far more information as a rule.
If you have a short film, a feature film or a documentary that is complete and you don’t have distribution for it, use www.CreateSpace.com to distribute it. You simply log into their website, tell them about your project, upload a DVD cover, and then ship them the CD or DVD. They make it available through your online store, available for sale on Amazon.com, available for rent on Amazon.com, and available for viewing as video on demand at Amazon.
Film producers generally shy away from controversy because no one likes it when their film is hated. But a well-hated film often does very well at the box office between those that hate the the film talk about it as much as those who love it if not more. Fahrenheit 9/11, Passion of the Christ, 9 ½ Weeks and a hundred other films have been sold on the back of a good controversy. This means you should treat those who will dislike your film intensely as another group to market to.
A good documentary feature ﬁlm, well marketed, is a great professional and ﬁnancial investment. Documentary production budgets are usually low, ranging from hundreds of thousands of dollars to under ten million dollars. Most documentaries that end up in theaters or on television have production budgets under ﬁve million dollars and the vast majority are under three million. Most documentaries don’t cost much, but well made documentaries can and do make good money.
The Critical First Step One of the most important things you can do to insure your project’s ultimate success is simply to deﬁne your documentary and its objectives. To help you do this, start by answering the questions outlined below.
In order to bake a cake you need a list of ingredients. In order to make a documentary feature ﬁlm you need to make a list of what, and who, you need. This begins by deﬁning the ﬁlm you want to watch.
One of the key concepts producers must master is the notion that a ﬁlm isn’t ﬁnished until it reaches its audience. Marketing and promotion begin when you begin pitching the ﬁlm to people prior to production, and it continues until long after a ﬁlm is released. Documentaries can generate revenues for years if they are adequately marketed and promoted.
There are several ways in which a documentary can earn revenue. Maximizing each revenue stream, while minimizing the costs associated with revenue collection and the time required to collect revenues, is the key to creating a ﬁnancially proﬁtable ﬁlm.
Changes in filmmaking technologies have created more filmmakers, more films and more documentaries than ever before. A similar revolution has occured in film marketing. The Internet has made it easier than ever for a film to find its audience even before its finished. MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING, THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST and FARENHEIT 911 are all examples of films which found their market without going through the mass media first.