A Primer On Packaging
All about packaging films at different budget ranges, with different needs, and dynamics PLUS can you attach actors without financing in place?
A couple newsletters ago we discussed the transatlantic film financing model where you pull together the best parts of European funding schemes and combine that with a US mindset and strategy to finance your film.
I was discussing that more in depth with FS Pro members and ended up creating a sample finance plan for the FS Pro Resource Hub which you can download for free if you’re a member. Thought I’d mention that here… if that’s a resource that could be helpful to you right now in your film financing journey, then consider joining our Pro community!
This week I’ve been heads down packaging about three films at once - all at different budget ranges, with different needs, and dynamics. But they are all technically not fully financed at the moment.
People always ask how to get around that catch-22 and honestly, there’s no way around it. You just gotta wade into the fire!
Yes I have years-long relationships I can leverage but at least 50% of the time I’m approaching agents and managers with whom I don’t have a relationship. Sometimes I mention previous projects we’ve corresponded about or mutual connections but regardless, I’m always honest about the status of the project being unfunded and if they respond that their client is ‘offer only’ I respect that and move on.
Sometimes there’s workarounds to that - like they may actually read the material, send it to their client and come back with ‘interest’ but will make clear their client isn’t fully attached until financing is in place and you can make a real offer.
That’s OK too since you can leverage an actor’s ‘interest’ to carefully approach other actors but again, you have to be transparent about the fact that they aren’t formally attached yet.
When you have an un-financed project, you also want to lower your expectations on who you can even access with out a formal offer. You’re just not going to be able to get the biggest new stars on TV and in theaters unless you have a personal connection to them. And one tool in my box of tricks I always lean on, is the Director’s body of work and industry profile (even if it’s small!). Aside from who is producing, these reps and their clients really want to work with established directors or ones visibly on the come up, so I lean heavily on the directors I’m working with as well as my own profile as a Producer.
I could go on and on all day about packaging (since it’s what I do most days, all day!) but I’ll leave it here for now and allow you all to ask any questions you have.
Hit me up in the comments below if I can help!
On that note, I’ll wrap things up for today. I hope you all have a wonderful day ahead and speak to you again soon!
To your success,