Path To Production: Taking The Temp In the Market
+ gaining early allies and fans to leverage for financing
In my last installment of the Path To Production series we discussed Packaging Directors & Producers + building value in your project without financing in place.
I mentioned that the next step in the process is taking the temp in the market…. and by that I mean, let’s get your project and package in front of possible sales and financing partners and not only see if anyone bites, but get a feel for whether we’re on the right track with our packaging choices for proposed budget level and genre.
Some people, particularly if you’re newer and don’t have the contacts yet, skip this step…. but I urge you not to. Lest you wind up in a situation months/years down the line either over or under-packaged, targeting the wrong budget (too low or too high), and not able to move forward. You’ve backed yourself into a corner and wasted lots of time and money only to find out what you have isn’t viable. I’ve seen this play out many times with filmmakers letting their egos get in the way and not willing to solicit true market feedback early in the process.
The taking the temp step marks an important part of the development and financing journey because it’s also an opportunity to garner early allies and fans for your project and when done properly, you can leverage this early enthusiasm and positive market feedback to attach further talent and financing. It’s a the real deal of momentum builders.
I’m such a proponent of this approach that I always include it on projects I’m consulting on and by the way, my network of sales and financing partners thank me too because they enjoy having an early say in building projects that they hope to be able to work with you on.
Can You Hack It?
With a couple of big film markets on the horizon (EFM in a few weeks, then Cannes in May) it’s a perfect time to be taking the temp with your semi-developed and packaged projects because the market is in acquisitions mode so why not play into the demand and use that to your advantage to build early relationships and project allies?
I understand not everyone has a deep bench of contacts because that takes time and experience in the business. But you can hack it by investing in going to film markets and even festivals and start relationship building and taking the temp for your project in person.
During the pandemic when demand for new projects was off the charts, and in person events were on pause, I often heard from filmmakers that they couldn’t get past gatekeepers to present their early stage projects. So I adapted my Development Consulting services accordingly and launched a Straight Submissions Service for projects that already had some development assets in place, an attachment or two, and just needed my to help get their project into the hands of decision makers to get feedback and early interest.
The service was extremely popular but then due to my production schedule, I had to pause it for a while… until now, where I’m starting to get a lot more inquires on projects that are at last partially well-developed and have some elements in place, but need that last part of the equation - soliciting feedback from the market and even getting it over the initial financing hump.
I haven’t put up a formal page for this yet (but working on it!) so if you’re interested in my Straight Submissions Service, for now just email me at email@example.com and give me the details of your project and I’ll let you know more about it.
With EFM kicking off in just two weeks, I wanted to expedite this to you guys in case anyone wants to leverage the advantageous timing….
Alright - let’s put a bow on this one for today. We’ll pick things up in the next installment talking about what to actually do with this early feedback and interest…. revise budget and script? Add new attachments? Switch up your strategy?
All that to come!
If you have any questions about the taking the temp part of the process, please leave them in the comments section below.
Have a great day everyone….
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