DIY Film Tips #1 – The Feature Film Plan! – Slices of Lasagna

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Who Am I?

My name is Reyshan Parker, and I am a writer, director, author and producer. I have Masters Degree in Film from Savannah Collage of Art and Design and a Bachelors Degree in Playwriting with a Film Minor from Ohio University. For the past three years I have been working on making a feature film called Noir: the Good Girl, the Detective and the Femme Fatale. My producing partner and I had originally planned on it being three films, each shot for half an hour, by three different crews, then put together as a feature film. Well, that slowly morphed into just me directing it, and we then planned on a $100,000 dollar budget! Ok, we could probably get that without too much difficulty. But then, the script managed to get into the hands of our now producers representative who insisted that the script was so good that it deserved named actors and a “real” budget! The whole thing spiraled up to a $2 million dollar budget with a $700,000 dollar cast break, and another $4.3 million dollars for marketing and distribution, which includes three hundred, select screens across the country.   If you’re doing the math the total budget came out to 6.3 million dollars, that’s 63 times more money then was originally planned.

Right after all this had been decided, I was approached by an ex-professor of mine who said he would be interested in helping us make the movie for $300,000 dollars… WE TURNED HIM DOWN!! This is probably the biggest mistake I have ever made in my life, hands down. The lesson learned: NEVER LOOK A GIFT HORSE IN THE MOUTH!!

Since then, we did manage to find an investment group and spent about $25,000 dollars in due diligence for them to broker the financing of the film. Over a year later it seems the film still isn’t even close to seeing production.

Not to say we haven’t made strides on it. During this time we shot Noir.0 a 12-minute prologue to the feature film. I wrote the novel version of the film. Recorded the audio book, the screenplay has been made into a graphic novel, and still we wait…

The point is, that I started with an amazing simple script that could have been made on the cheap and reaped a large profit; unfortunately we let our heads and the project get to big. The idea of having “A” list actors and a full-on film set was too enticing at the time and we lost site of the bigger picture that was simply getting the film made.

So now I have decided to do it my way, and to help others follow in my footsteps. Together we are going to change the landscape of the industry forever. Don’t get me wrong, it has already been changing, but now is the time to jump on and ride the wave to the finish line.

I am a firm believer that in this day and age any polished feature film, and by that I mean a thought out and original script with compelling characters that tells a great story, shot in 2K or higher with a perfectly textured, color, sound design and score, made for $100,000 dollars or less will sell for at least $100,000 dollars, or easily make it back in digital distribution.   This means zero risk on the investment side!

But… what if we could make them for the cost of food? Well, that’s my plan!

Who are you?

You should be a passionate and creative leader of man; someone with great and innovative ideas, who has the ability to inspire others to follow you to the ends of the earth and back for the sake of a great film… and get there!

Check out these inspirational video’s: Christopher Nolan Shares DIY Shooting Tricks of His No-Budget First Film, ‘Following’

Do You Want To Make A Small Indie Film Or Have A Job? by James Cullen Bressack

Do You Want To Make A Small Indie Film Or Have A Job? by James Cullen Bressack @ Film Courage

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