First of all, let me say that it is a pleasure to have Mike McCafferty join this blog as a contributing author. Without Mike and that conversation we had last year, I would have never been able to take on a project such as this one. But Mike helped me realize that collaboration between a cast and fans is very possible. It just takes willingness on the part of both parties to work together and get it done. We’re definitely going into new territory here. Already, old rules are being broken and new ones are being created.
In his post, Mike asked for your help to promote this project. Now you may be thinking, “Of course, I will help! As soon as that movie is released, I’m going to tell everyone I know about it.” And that’s great. But instead of waiting until the movie is released, how about start now? Seems kind of early, doesn’t it? Well, bear with me and let me explain.
It’s going to take some time to build buzz (which the dictionary defines as “excited interest or attention”) and there are fewer of us now than there was before, so the earlier we start the better. Not only can buzz help increase the audience for the movie, but it can also help to get it made. How is that?
There are two big hurdles to jump over in getting this movie made: financing and distribution.
Let’s talk about financing first. I mention on the About Page that I have had some preliminary interest from a funding source, and that’s true. But at this point in time it’s not guaranteed. That funding source might come through for us and provide all the money needed to get this movie made. On the other hand, it could also fall through for a variety of reasons: from simply losing interest in the project, to having resources already tied up in other ventures, to thinking that this isn’t a good investment. Having funding fall through is actually a fairly common occurance in filmmaking and anyone who wants to be a producer has to be prepared to deal with that fact. I’ve been told to not just wait until the check is in the bank, but wait until the check actually clears.
People who invest in movies know that it is a risky investment, but they also know that the payoff can be big if the movie turns out to be hit. There are several factors that they look at when considering whether or not to invest in a film venture, but I’m going to only cover a couple right now: audience and distribution.
Having a built-in audience is not something that every film has, but producers often try to minimize the risks and make the film more appealing to financiers by getting a “name” star or two in their film. It doesn’t always work and we could probably all cite examples when a known star was in a film that flopped. But many times it does work. How many of you have gone to see a movie just because Tom Hanks, Johnny Depp, or Angelina Jolie was starring in it? These actors are considered bankable, which is why if producers can get a name actor interested in their movie, they have a better chance of getting their film funded.
We happen to be very fortunate. We have a very talented cast from an awesome little TV show for our film. But the show has been off the air for a few years in the U.S. (though it is still airing in a few other countries), so investors are going to want to know if there is still a worldwide audience that wants to see this cast come together again.
Another thing that investors consider is distribution. While investors sometimes fund films without any kind of distribution deal in place, having a distribution deal already in place makes for a stronger case. As a producer, I owe it to the investors to get the best distribution deal possible. To do otherwise is unconscionable. After all, they are the ones who are putting their money on the line.
So do distributors consider the audience when deciding what films to promote and distribute/air? Yes, that’s definitely one of the factors they take into account. Like investors, they too are putting their money on the line. A film that already has a built-in audience can definitely be more attractive to them.
Now, I’m going to work my you-know-what off for this film and try to make it as good as I can with the resources I acquire. And, if you, the audience, are willing to support that and show that there is an audience for our I-Man cast, our chances for success will be that much greater. I know we can create something special of which we can all be proud.
Now you may be wondering just what is it that you can do to help, so I’ve taken Mike’s suggestions and added a couple of my own. These ideas are easy to do and don’t cost anything.
- Tell a friend–Do you have a friend that is a fan of The Invisible Man or its cast? Do you know someone who enjoys quality TV and movies? Tell them about this project and website! And tell them to tell their friends. Spread the word!
- Bulletin Boards–Do you visit any online bulletin boards? As long as it doesn’t violate the board’s rules or policies, how about posting a blurb about this exciting project? And don’t forget to include a link to this website.
- Blogs and Websites–Do you have a blog or website? Please consider putting up a link to Shoom Zone Productions. Links help in a couple of ways: 1) They help drive visitors to this site, and 2) They help increaseÂ our search engine rankings. Once you have a link up, please contact me via the Contact Form or leave a comment and let me know that you’ve linked to this site. Don’t forget to include a link to your website or blog because I want to be sure to reciprocate by adding your website or blog to a new link category I’ve created called Friends & Supporters. The idea is to grow the list of friends and supporters as large as possible. When I give presentations to investors and distributors, I want to be able to show them all the people who support this project! And I want it to be impressive!
- MySpace–Do you have a MySpace page? So does Shoom Zone Productions! It’s located at http://www.myspace.com/shoomzoneproductions. Please add Shoom Zone Productions to your MySpace friends list. The goal is to spread the newsÂ andÂ grow the friends list. Let’s make it huge! Let’s impress those investors and distributors!
Those are just a few things that you can do right now to help out. For your convenience, I’ve posted them on a new page called How Fans Can Help. This list is by no means comprehensive, so if anybody has any ideas that I can add to this list, please let me know.
Thank you for your support. Let’s get our cast together again!
I think that it’s great that you are putting this project togther. And, I just can’t wait to see our cast together again. Today I put the link to your site on my blog to help start getting people to see your site.
On the subject of distribution, have you considered taking the Outfoxed route of going direct to DVD? It’s hella cheaper than theatrical, and it’s much easier for a fan to point a potential fan to an Amazon page than to a theater that doesn’t happen to be anywhere near where potential fan lives!
Heck we’re getting closer and closer to a real online distribution model, a long-format YouTube that plays over your digital cable box. Maybe by the time the project’s done, huh?
That’s a definite possibility, but not my first choice. My first choice would be theatrical distribution, even if it was limited, because that would allow us to maximize revenue from more windows.
But be assured that eventually the film will be released on DVD. I’m not going to let what happened to I-Man happen to this film.
I just recently became re-obsessed with IMan, and I’ve been tryiing to get as many of my school friends to watch it as I can. They seem to like it so far, which is great, considering I;ve been showing them random episodes that I find on YouTube. I’m gonna go post links in places now!
If you find out where those YouTube episodes are, please let me know.