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View Full Version : Budget for Hero Fest?



Norm Sanders
06-10-2006, 02:01 PM
Just always curious what people financially put into their films. This would include ALL hard costs associated with food (catering), tape stock, rentals, payment of cast/crew, locations, gas/travel, licenses for music, etc.

So, if you were a good producer, and actually at least fed your cast/crew well, it's hard to imagine that if you shot for much more than 2-3 days that you wouldn't at LEAST spend $100 or more. Just because you didn't pull cash out for something doesn't mean there still wasn't a financial impact.

I'm looking for hard up front costs here, not deferred. If you want to state what your budget probably is once all deferred gets paid out (if ever), feel free to do so in the comments.

My largest up front cost was food, at about $450 to feed 25 cast & crew for 4 days. Next was some props (break away glass for the martini glasses x2 about $70 with insurance, shipping, etc.), hotel rental for our apartment scene, Skillet Sync license fee, etc. ... our total budget was less than $1K, but probably a little more than $800 (still have to add up all the receipts).

Budget including DEFERRED will be about $11-12K (not including duplication costs), which I'm honestly hoping to come close to meeting with DVD sales, etc. Still not horribly bad for a 23 minute film.

Oh, and the out right PURCHASE of equipment doesn't actually count towards your film budget, as these are items you can use in the next film as well, so only count rentals.

Daniel Skubal
06-10-2006, 02:13 PM
Budget including DEFERRED will be about $11-12K (not including duplication costs), which I'm honestly hoping to come close to meeting with DVD sales, etc. Still not horribly bad for a 23 minute film.

WOAH You meant 1,100-1,200 right? not 11,000-12,000?

I didn't keep track of the budget of ours but I know I am flat broke now, so it was a few hundred. This film won't be out of post until mid july though, probably.

Norm Sanders
06-10-2006, 02:20 PM
Nope, I meant $11-12K ... If I was paying the people up front, I could probably get by with $50/day, but if they're doing it for deferred (i.e. FREE unless I can make any money on this, and most all of these people have NEVER seen anything on deferred - so I aim to surprise them), then I feel I should double it, which is still WAY low for some of the pros we had on crew.

So deferred is $100/day for crew, and $125/day for cast. For the amount of hours they're all putting in on this, it's still not much above minimum wage. So take that times 25 people, and it adds up QUICKLY.

Daniel Skubal
06-10-2006, 02:24 PM
Nope, I meant $11-12K ... If I was paying the people up front, I could probably get by with $50/day, but if they're doing it for deferred (i.e. FREE unless I can make any money on this, and most all of these people have NEVER seen anything on deferred - so I aim to surprise them), then I feel I should double it, which is still WAY low for some of the pros we had on crew.

So deferred is $100/day for crew, and $125/day for cast. For the amount of hours they're all putting in on this, it's still not much above minimum wage. So take that times 25 people, and it adds up QUICKLY.

Wow!

Kholi
06-10-2006, 02:30 PM
You said you're looking for eleven-thousand plus in DvD sales? ? ?

Norm Sanders
06-10-2006, 02:34 PM
Well, if you aim for something less, you'll likely achieve it, so why not aim high, right? I've got the sync license good for 500 DVD's, and hope that if we market it well enough we should be able to sell at least 100-200 on DVXuser, as we'll also be donating funds to isara.com with each sale. We'll also look to offer a CD of the full soundtrack & a themed Suite the composer put together, which is over 30 minutes of music.

The DVD's will be fully retail packaged complete with overwrap, etc. and will be packed to the brim with about another 90 minutes or so of BTS material, in addition to the full 23 minute cut, so yeah, we're hoping to be able to pay people as much on the back side as possible.

In addition, the more sales we can have on this, the more it'll help to get an investor for our next larger project for this fall.

Alex DePew
06-10-2006, 03:31 PM
Well, if you aim for something less, you'll likely achieve it, so why not aim high, right? I've got the sync license good for 500 DVD's, and hope that if we market it well enough we should be able to sell at least 100-200 on DVXuser, as we'll also be donating funds to isara.com with each sale. We'll also look to offer a CD of the full soundtrack & a themed Suite the composer put together, which is over 30 minutes of music.

The DVD's will be fully retail packaged complete with overwrap, etc. and will be packed to the brim with about another 90 minutes or so of BTS material, in addition to the full 23 minute cut, so yeah, we're hoping to be able to pay people as much on the back side as possible.

In addition, the more sales we can have on this, the more it'll help to get an investor for our next larger project for this fall.

Wow, great planning. I just wanted to get my first short under my belt! I will definitely buy your DVD to support other indie filmmakers. Please keep us in the loop on how you are doing with sales, marketing, etc. good or bad. It will help those of us who have no idea of the business end of a short, or any film for that matter how it works and if it is feasable to finance your own short. I was under the impression that shorts were not really a marketable film. That they didn't get the credit enough to get wider distibution. But I will be happy to be wrong and I KNOW you will be too.

As for my own short, I didn't cut corners on feeding my crew. And I didn't keep tight track of the budget, but I think it would have to be around $250 - $500.

Kholi
06-10-2006, 03:37 PM
Well, if you aim for something less, you'll likely achieve it, so why not aim high, right? I've got the sync license good for 500 DVD's, and hope that if we market it well enough we should be able to sell at least 100-200 on DVXuser, as we'll also be donating funds to isara.com with each sale. We'll also look to offer a CD of the full soundtrack & a themed Suite the composer put together, which is over 30 minutes of music.

The DVD's will be fully retail packaged complete with overwrap, etc. and will be packed to the brim with about another 90 minutes or so of BTS material, in addition to the full 23 minute cut, so yeah, we're hoping to be able to pay people as much on the back side as possible.

In addition, the more sales we can have on this, the more it'll help to get an investor for our next larger project for this fall.

Well, I certainly hope you get what you're looking for. Would be a nice success story to hear.

Afterall, the "Broken" guys seemed to have done well with their short. Wishing you luck.

Kholi
06-10-2006, 03:39 PM
Wow, great planning. I just wanted to get my first short under my belt! I will definitely buy your DVD to support other indie filmmakers. Please keep us in the loop on how you are doing with sales, marketing, etc. good or bad. It will help those of us who have no idea of the business end of a short, or any film for that matter how it works and if it is feasable to finance your own short. I was under the impression that shorts were not really a marketable film. That they didn't get the credit enough to get wider distibution. But I will be happy to be wrong and I KNOW you will be too.

As for my own short, I didn't cut corners on feeding my crew. And I didn't keep tight track of the budget, but I think it would have to be around $250 - $500.

You can definitely market a short film. Although, I wouldn't try selling anything less than twenty minutes, that's just mean/silly.

As mentioned, the "broken" guys claim to have sold plenty of their short film, which was also packed with Behind The Scenes. I actually wathced the Behind The Scenes more than the short itself.

I plan on buying The Ore dvd, and that's only a short. In fact, I've been meaning to see if there's a waiting list so that I can jump on it.

Norm Sanders
06-10-2006, 03:46 PM
Yeah, I'll buy THE ORE, as I'm a fan & friend of Sams, so I want to support him, not to mention excited to see it on my big screen.

That said, we're expecting the BTS to be as big if not bigger drawn than the film itself, which has already garnered interest in the full version. I'll even be marketing my "famous BBW ribs recipe" ala Robert Rodriguez style, and some "How To's" in the editing side, as I'll show ways how to correct angles in post, fix when the actor has their head tilted the wrong way in another take, etc.

There'll also be interviews with folks beyond just the director & DP, as our lighting guy will be there to talk about some of this lighting tips, etc.

I don't expect actual distribution, Alex, but I do hope to be able to sell these on my own.

Also, and here's another tip, we've got one of Skillet's songs in our film, and they've got a pretty good fan base (over 30,000+ fans/friends on MySpace), so I'll be adding as MANY of those fans to my friend list as well, so when we release the DVD you can bet that I'll market to those folks & let them know that we've released our DVD for sale which features one of their favorite band's songs ... and that a portion of the funds will go to charity.

Always have to look at the sales angle and what will entice people to want to buy your product, as long as you're offering them something of value in exchange.

Alex DePew
06-10-2006, 04:32 PM
Yeah, I'll buy THE ORE, as I'm a fan & friend of Sams, so I want to support him, not to mention excited to see it on my big screen.

That said, we're expecting the BTS to be as big if not bigger drawn than the film itself, which has already garnered interest in the full version. I'll even be marketing my "famous BBW ribs recipe" ala Robert Rodriguez style, and some "How To's" in the editing side, as I'll show ways how to correct angles in post, fix when the actor has their head tilted the wrong way in another take, etc.

There'll also be interviews with folks beyond just the director & DP, as our lighting guy will be there to talk about some of this lighting tips, etc.

I don't expect actual distribution, Alex, but I do hope to be able to sell these on my own.

Also, and here's another tip, we've got one of Skillet's songs in our film, and they've got a pretty good fan base (over 30,000+ fans/friends on MySpace), so I'll be adding as MANY of those fans to my friend list as well, so when we release the DVD you can bet that I'll market to those folks & let them know that we've released our DVD for sale which features one of their favorite band's songs ... and that a portion of the funds will go to charity.

Always have to look at the sales angle and what will entice people to want to buy your product, as long as you're offering them something of value in exchange.

Good to know. That does sound really interesting. I do think the BTS is a huge draw. I know it has me interested. :) Thanks for the very useful information. And I think it is probably better to handle your distribution the way you are doing it. You keep the control and the profits after the donation to charity and costs.

I will definitely keep this in mind for my next short.


You can definitely market a short film. Although, I wouldn't try selling anything less than twenty minutes, that's just mean/silly.

As mentioned, the "broken" guys claim to have sold plenty of their short film, which was also packed with Behind The Scenes. I actually wathced the Behind The Scenes more than the short itself.

I plan on buying The Ore dvd, and that's only a short. In fact, I've been meaning to see if there's a waiting list so that I can jump on it.

I agree that twenty minutes or so is probably most consumer's low end. And I have seen the ads for "Broken" everywhere. They are a promotion machine! I will definitely look into buying "The Ore" as well, the trailer looks great.

Alex

Aaron Marshall
06-10-2006, 07:07 PM
I didn't spend much, if at all, on my production, but I busted my ass.

I didn't starve my cast and crew. My cast and crew = me. I used a single brand new tape for everything. I've always been inspired by Roger Corman like economics and resourcefulness.

Norm Sanders
06-10-2006, 07:30 PM
Well, okay Aaron, I guess a cast & crew of one will be an exception to the rule. :)

Edgen
06-11-2006, 01:25 AM
My cast was really cheap and I recycled the same tape.

/j

Norm Sanders
06-11-2006, 01:43 AM
Yeah Justin, I knew you'd be in the same boat as Aaron (Noct). :)

capitalP
06-12-2006, 07:59 AM
Great marketing plan Norm, taking some tips here, not to hijack your thread but, I'd have to PM you and talk soon about that DVD replication thingy we talked about a while back! I'm almost ready to get a quote from you.

And you can count me buying your DVD, loved to support, keep us posted.

Norm Sanders
06-12-2006, 08:36 AM
Thanks, capitalP, and look forward to that PM as well!

Larry Rutledge
06-12-2006, 08:54 AM
The bulk of my expenses were craft services/meals and the costume. All the cast/crew worked on "deferred pay" contracts knowing that there wasn't much chance of this film making money, but always the possiblity :)

It's amazing the help you can get if you just ask....the guy I got, at the last minute no less, is a professional actor (SAG). He's done some made for TV movies, some national comercials and a lot of theatre. And he did it to help me out.

I haven't pulled the receipts, but I think we spent about $450 - $500...mostly for food (if you can't pay 'em, at least feed 'em) :)

Jack Daniel Stanley
06-13-2006, 08:45 PM
under $500 I think
makeup = $130
rubber rat = $8
freeze dried real rat = free (on loan)
Sunglasses = donated by Somatic
$200 or so in food.
$100 or so in set and paint materials.
$50 or so in transportation (some gas and cab fare for people when appropriate)

soffcore
06-13-2006, 10:39 PM
"The Ore" cost us about 3 grand. Maybe a bit more. We got a lot of help from people willing to give us their time for free, actors included. Most of our money was spent on feeding everyone.

Brandon Rice
06-13-2006, 11:20 PM
"The Ore" cost us about 3 grand. Maybe a bit more. We got a lot of help from people willing to give us their time for free, actors included. Most of our money was spent on feeding everyone.

That's decent... 3k is a normal cost for a bigger short (as The Ore is)

soffcore
06-14-2006, 12:33 PM
Yeah, it was reasonable, but it could have easily been a lot more if we didn't have costume, prop and location connections.

Gordon JL
06-18-2006, 05:46 PM
So Marrow wasn't entered in the contest then?

So if I'm right, neither The Ore or Marrow can be seen online, so I'd have to buy both of them (or watch the teasers); oddly enough, both of these movies are of the highest budget. Envision, I'm still trying to figure if I should purchase your DVD -- I can't find any footage or a trailer anywhere.

Norm Sanders
06-18-2006, 07:37 PM
Marrow ... are you talking about SPARROW? You can go to the ONCE A HERO thread, to view a 6 minute cut of SPARROW ... I'll hopefully have trailers completed within the week.

DVD's won't be available for at least about a month anyway, as we're still putting together all the BTS material, but thanks in advance for your interest.

NoahK, I'm curious about your film. You've got the highest budget in here, but I can't recall your film being in the contest ... was it? Would love to see it!

soffcore
06-18-2006, 10:29 PM
"The Ore" will be posted on the website (www.theore.net) for free viewing when it is completed. We are also working on a DVD with a ton of extras and that will be for sale. (You can pre-order it now!)