IFH 170: How a Screenwriter Becomes a First Time Director with Kelly Fremon Craig

July 25, 2017
00:0000:00

How a Screenwriter Becomes a First Time Director with Kelly Fremon Craig

I'm asked all the time

"How does a screenwriter get the opportunity to direct one of their screenplays?"

That is the question. In Hollywood, more times than not, writers don't have the power or ability to direct their own material. It took a few screenplays before Quentin Tarantino got the shot with Reservoir Dogs. Today's guest is writer/director Kelly Fremon Craig. She got her shot to director her own screenplay on the 2016 critical darling Edge of Seventeen.

Kelly's adventures through Hollyweird is inspiring to say the least. Enjoy my conversation with Kelly Fremon Craig.

LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE

IFH 169: How to Make Money Renting Your Film Gear with ShareGrid

July 20, 2017
00:0000:00

How to Make Money Renting Your Film Gear with ShareGrid's Brent Barbano

Have you ever wanted to make a little extra cash with that film gear sitting in your closet? Have you ever wanted o rent that new Arri ALEXA but were afraid you couldn't afford it? Well, I came across the solution for both problems, it's call ShareGrid.

ShareGrid is a per to per community, think Airbnb for filmmakers, that allows list film gear for rental or rent gear directly from other filmmakers with instant insurance. I reached out to Brent Barbano, co-founder of Sharegrid to discuss how he built this community up, talk about how to be a working cinematographer and just talk shop.

Heres a couple of videos explain what ShareGrid is all about.

 

 

Enjoy my conversation with ShareGrid Co-Founder Brent Barbano.

IFH 168: How To Be Creative - The War of Art & Turning Pro

July 19, 2017
00:0000:00

How To Be Creative - The War of Art & Turning Pro

How to be creative? This is a question that surprisingly has a simple answer. DO THE WORK! In this episode, I'll be going over a remarkable book I've read that has truly changed the way I think about life, the creative process and making films. The book is [easyazon_link identifier="1936891026" locale="US" tag="whatisbroke-20"]The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles[/easyazon_link] by Steven Pressfield.

If you have writer's block, can't break through the fear or just want some tips on how to be creative this is the episode you need to hear. I'm also running the FIRST EVER Indie Film Hustle Contest. Steve Pressfield sent me a bounty of books to give away to the tribe. All you have to do to enter is "mail me", not email, but actually mail me a letter or video telling me your break through story, when you decided to do the work and stopped being afraid of following that dream

Winner's story will be read on an episode of the IFH Podcast. You can send letters or videos to:

Indie Film Hustle Contest - Pressfield
c/o Alex Ferrari
531-A North Hollywood Way #257
Burbank, CA 91505

I can't wait to read your stories. So stop reading this and listen to the podcast already.

IFH 167: How to Make $3 Million Selling Your Indie Film on iTunes & Amazon w/ Range 15

July 13, 2017
00:0000:00

How to Make $3 Million Selling Your Indie Film on iTunes & Amazon w/ with Nick Palmisciano of Range 15

We all hear that self-distribution is the future for indie filmmakers. Build an audience and make a film for that audience but finding real world examples of a "true" indie film breaking $1,000,000+ using that model is tough. Well, I'm happy to introduce you to Range 15, the indie film that not only made $1 million selling on iTunes and Amazon but they have made $3 million+ to date, and growing.

Today's guest is Nick Palmisciano, one of the writers, producers, and actors in Range 15. His story of how this film came into the world is truly inspiring.

Nick and Mat Best, his co-producer/writer/lead of Range 15, had a crazy idea to create a feature film for the communities they had built up over the years. They are both military veterans and own military themed apparel companies Ranger up Article 15, respectively.

They wanted to make a film that the military community would enjoy and they did just that. Check out the fun trailer below.

 

They crowdfunded $1.2 million to make the film. Their goal was $350,000 but they made that in the first 30 hours of the campaign. With the extra cash, they were able to get William Shatner, Keith David, Sean Astin and Danny Trejo in the film. Check out the crowdfunding video below.

 

As you can tell from the videos above Nick and the gang don't take themselves too seriously but what is serious is how much dinero Range 15 has pulled in. For an indie film with no studio and no distributer to break $3 million bucks is a miracle. My hats off to Range 15.

Enjoy my inspirational conversation with Nick Palmisciano.

IFH 166: Indie Film Self Distribution & Marketing Blueprint with This is Meg

July 12, 2017
00:0000:00

Independent Film Self Distribution & Marketing Blueprint with This is Meg

Over the past 6 months or so I've been getting an enormous amount of emails and messages asking me the same question:

What is your distribution and marketing plan for This is Meg?

I hear you IFH Tribe, so I decide to put this podcast together and lay out the marketing and distribution blueprint I created to get This is Meg out into the world.

In this episode, I break down:

  • Why I didn't go through a traditional distributor
  • Why I didn't do a theatrical run through TUGG
  • How I will be self-distributing This is Meg
  • What platforms I'll be selling on and why
  • What my marketing strategy is

This is Meg has been a giant experiment to see what happens and I wanted to share the ride with you, the IFH Tribe. Thank you for all the support. Take a listen and keep on hustlin'.

Right click here to download the MP3
Download on iTunes Direct
Watch on IFH YouTube Channel

Below you can check out some of the marketing I'm doing to promote This is Meg and content I'm giving my cast so they can push the film on their platforms.

THROWBACK FRIDAY: How Not to Get Ripped Off in Post Production

July 7, 2017
00:0000:00

Please note: Throwback Fridays are archival episodes from the Indie Film Hustle Podcast. After many requests from the IFH Tribe to bring back some of the show's best episodes, I decided to create Throwback Fridays. These episodes will not be posted every week but at least twice a month...if not more. 

There's so much amazing info and knowledge bombs in many of these past episodes and I don't want them to be lost in the sea of IFH Content so I'll be putting a spotlight on them in Throwback Fridays. Enjoy! 

How Not to Get Ripped Off in Post Production

Over the years I've seen many of my fellow indie filmmakers get completely ripped off when they entered the post-production process. So many promises are given and the rates they charge are criminal. I wanted to put together a podcast to pull the curtain back on the "true" pricing of post production services.

Now, this is based on my experience working in Los Angeles so the prices might differ depending where you are in the country or the world.

I hope this episode provides a great amount of value and that it saves you your hard earned cash while making your next indie film. Enjoy!

This is Meg (2017) - The YouTube Star (Jill-Michele Melean, Lahna Turner & Rubin Dario)

July 6, 2017
Watch Now:

This is Meg (2017) - The YouTube Star  (Jill-Michele Melean, Lahna Turner & Rubin Dario)

BUY THE MOVIE on iTunes: http://www.thisismeg.com/itunes & Support Indie Film!

Watch the best This is Meg scenes & clips:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLHw-MoPtklee-XRQ65rAw-zrD2k9GMxt9

FILM DESCRIPTION:
30 is the new 50 here, lose 15 pounds, Meg! You need to be on new age social media, Meg!” From nagging agents to nagging parents, aspiring comedienne/actress Meg finds herself in a rut as she evaluates how far she is from making it big in Los Angeles.

Even the girl singing nude (with tasteful pasties) reached 2 million subscribers. How many chakras need to be awakened to be truly happy in this rough industry? Based on true events (of ANY woman in Hollywood), This is Meg sends us on a whirlwind of an adventure from struggle to enlightenment, the Los Angeles way.

SOCIAL MEDIA:
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/thisismegfilm
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/thisismegfilm
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/thisismegfilm

CREDITS:
Director/Producer: Alex Ferrari (http://www.alexferrari.com)
Writer/Producer: Jill-Michele Meleán (http://www.jillyonline.com)

CAST:
MEG - Jill-Michele Melean
ERIC - Joseph Reitman
RUBY - Jenica Bergere
SASHA - Debra Wilson
SUZANNE WALKER - Holly Wortell
BROOKE - Krista Allen
AL THE EDITOR - Ruben Dario
CHERYL COLLINS - Shawn Pelofsky
ANGEL - Lahna Turner
MIKE THE BOOKER - Carlos Oscar
KYLE - Roarke Walker
TONY ECKHART - Carlos Alazraqui

OFFICIAL SITES:
http://www.thisismeg.com
http://www.indiefilmhustle.com

IFH 165: Why Creating Systems is Better Than Setting Goals

July 5, 2017
00:0000:00

Why Creating Systems is Better Than Setting Goals

We've all been taught that creating goals is important and they are but creating systems is even more powerful. How many times have you lost weight just to gain it back? How many half-written screenplays do you have sitting on your computer? 

When your focus is only the goal then what happens after you achieve that goal? In this episode, I discuss how to create systems that will get you to your goals faster and keep you motivated along the way. 

Shameless plug: This is Meg is now available for pre-order on iTunes at an early bird discount $9.99. Just go to www.thisismeg.com/itunes. I have a ton of content coming on how we are releasing the film so stay tuned.

LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE

SPONSORS

  1. FilmConvert - (10% OFF - CODE: HUSTLE)
  2. Hollywood Film & Television Directing Masterclass (EXCLUSIVE 50% OFF)
  3. Directing Actors Master Course – (30% OFF – CODE: HUSTLE)
  4. Get Your Film on Netflix, Hulu & Amazon & Keep 100% off the Revenue - Distribber
  5. Hollywood Camera Work: Mastering High-End Blocking and Staging (30% OFF – CODE: HUSTLE)
  6. Werner Herzog's Filmmaking MasterClass
  7. Aaron Sorkin Screenwriting Master Class
  8. FreeFilmBook.com (Download Your FREE Filmmaking Audio Book)

KILLER RESOURCES!!!

  1. INDIE FILM SYNDICATE Filmmaking Community
  2. IFH's Online Film School
  3. Six Secrets to get into Film Festivals for FREE!

To share your thoughts:

To help the show:

IFH 164: Vintage Lenses for Indie Filmmakers MasterClass w/ Alan Besedin

July 4, 2017
00:0000:00

Vintage Lenses for Indie Filmmakers MasterClass w/ Alan Besedin

One of the main goals of Indie Film Hustle is to give real world knowledge and resources to indie filmmakers so they can make a living doing what they love. Film gear is a big part of that equation. I always am on the lookout for the best bang for the buck when it comes to film gear.

I recently began to dip my toes into the world of vintage lenses. Vintages lenses are exactly that, vintage. You may be asking

"Alex, why would I but a 50-year-old lens that has color redition issues or is soft on the corners when the lenses of today are perfect, clean and more advanced?"

The main reason I've fallen in love with vintage lenses is exactly for that reason, they are not perfect. Years ago lenses were made by hand. Each lens had its own personality. Many of them have beautiful mistakes that made them stand out.

Case in point Stanley Kubrick. If you watch A Clockwork Orange you'll notice a wide shot as the doorbell rings about 20min into the film. The crazy wide shot was filmed with a Kinoptik 9.8 F2.3. The lens is far from perfect but it has character. Kubrick was more focused in achieving an interesting shot rather than a perfect one. This coming from a legendary perfectionist.

Kubrick lenses collection was made up of most vintage lenses. He would buy 10 copies of the same lenses, test them all and pick the best of the bunch and return the rest.

Using vintages lenses can also take the "digital bite" off of modern day camera sensors. The best thing about getting into vintage glass is the cost. You can get a beautiful "nifty 50mm" for between $20-$80. They're literally thousands of lens you can choose from, each one special in its own way.  Vintage lenses can truly give your film a unique look and make you stand out from the crowd.

Today's guest Alan Besedin has been running in the filmmaking trenches for years and runs my go-to resource for vintages lenses VintageLensesforVideo.com. I've watched every video and read every article on the site. It's a wealth of info.

So enjoy my conversation with Alan Besedin from VintageLensesforVideo.com.

Right click here to download the MP3
Download on iTunes Direct
Watch on IFH YouTube Channel

This is Meg (2017) - The Yogi (EXCLUSIVE CLIP)

June 28, 2017
Watch Now:

This is Meg (2017) - The Yogi (EXCLUSIVE CLIP)

BUY THE MOVIE on iTunes: http://www.thisismeg.com/itunes & Support Indie Film!

Watch the best This is Meg scenes & clips:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLHw-MoPtklee-XRQ65rAw-zrD2k9GMxt9

FILM DESCRIPTION:
30 is the new 50 here, lose 15 pounds, Meg! You need to be on new age social media, Meg!” From nagging agents to nagging parents, aspiring comedienne/actress Meg finds herself in a rut as she evaluates how far she is from making it big in Los Angeles.

Even the girl singing nude (with tasteful pasties) reached 2 million subscribers. How many chakras need to be awakened to be truly happy in this rough industry? Based on true events (of ANY woman in Hollywood), This is Meg sends us on a whirlwind of an adventure from struggle to enlightenment, the Los Angeles way.

SOCIAL MEDIA:
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/thisismegfilm
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/thisismegfilm
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/thisismegfilm

CREDITS:
Director/Producer: Alex Ferrari (http://www.alexferrari.com)
Writer/Producer: Jill-Michele Meleán (http://www.jillyonline.com)

CAST:
MEG - Jill-Michele Melean
ERIC - Joseph Reitman
RUBY - Jenica Bergere
SASHA - Debra Wilson
SUZANNE WALKER - Holly Wortell
BROOKE - Krista Allen
AL THE EDITOR - Ruben Dario
CHERYL COLLINS - Shawn Pelofsky
ANGEL - Lahna Turner
MIKE THE BOOKER - Carlos Oscar
KYLE - Roarke Walker
TONY ECKHART - Carlos Alazraqui

OFFICIAL SITES:
http://www.thisismeg.com
http://www.indiefilmhustle.com

IFH 163: Why Indie Filmmakers Need to Break the Rules

June 27, 2017
00:0000:00

Why Indie Filmmakers Need to Break the Rules

In this episode, I discuss breaking the rules. why it is important to your career as an indie filmmaker and how it can make you stand out from the crowd. 

I share examples on rule breakers in throughout Hollywood history and the impact it had on their careers. So get ready to break some mutha f'**kin rules!

Also, I have some HUGE news. This is Meg is now available for pre-order on iTunes at an early bird discount $9.99. Just go to www.thisismeg.com/itunes. I have a ton of content coming on how we are releasing the film so stay tuned. 

THROWBACK FRIDAY: The 5 Lies of Indie Film Distribution

June 23, 2017
00:0000:00

Please note: Throwback Fridays are archival episodes from the Indie Film Hustle Podcast. After many requests from the IFH Tribe to bring back some of the show's best episodes, I decided to create Throwback Fridays. These episodes will not be posted every week but at least twice a month...if not more. 

There's so much amazing info and knowledge bombs in many of these past episodes and I don't want them to be lost in the sea of IFH Content so I'll be putting a spotlight on them in Throwback Fridays. Enjoy! 

The 5 Lies of Indie Film Distribution

Indie film distribution in a mystery to most indie filmmakers. It is filled with deception, scams, misinformation and straight out LIES! I wanted to put together an episode spotlighting the five major lies filmmakers hear about film distribution.

Like many truths in the world, these might not be easy to swallow but there is hope. If you have a plan "BEFORE YOU SHOOT YOUR FILM" your odds of success go up greatly.

I see so many indie filmmakers killing themselves to make their films but have no idea how to recoup their money or actually make a living doing what they love to do. I hope this podcast helps.

IFH 162: 7 Tips To Nail Your First Week On a Film Set

June 21, 2017
00:0000:00

7 Tips To Nail Your First Week On a Film Set

Your first week on a film set will be an intimidating experience. It takes time to find your feet and feel comfortable in such a unique working environment. You may have experience from college working on short film sets, but it is usually completely different working on blockbusters with hundreds of crew, cast, and extras. There can be large machinery moving around, lots of noise, multiple cameras, and camera cranes, equipment everywhere and on the stages, it is generally quite dark. You need to be aware, confident and know what happens on a film set to complete your tasks to the best of your ability. Here are some tips to help you get through your first week:

THROWBACK FRIDAY: Chris Vogler - Screenwriting & The Writer’s Journey Blueprint

June 16, 2017
00:0000:00

Please note: Throwback Fridays are archival episodes from the Indie Film Hustle Podcast. After many requests from the IFH Tribe to bring back some of the show's best episodes, I decided to create Throwback Fridays. These episodes will not be posted every week but at least twice a month...if not more. 

There's so much amazing info and knowledge bombs in many of these past episodes and I don't want them to be lost in the sea of IFH Content so I'll be putting a spotlight on them in Throwback Fridays. Enjoy! 

Chris Vogler: Screenwriting & The Writer's Journey Blueprint

If you have seen Star Wars then you know Joseph Campbell's work. If you ever have seen The Lion King then you have seen one of Campbell's best student's, Chris Vogler, work.

Related: Michael Hauge: Writing a Screenplay That Sells

Chris Vogler wrote the game-changing book  The Writers Journey: Mythic Structure for WritersI read this book over 20 years ago and it changed the way I look at story. Chris studied the work and principles of the late master Joseph Campbell. His book The Hero with a Thousand Faces was the bases for Star Wars as well as almost every other Hollywood feature film in the past 60 years.

What Chris Vogler did so well is that he translated Campbell's work and applied it to movies. The Writer's Journey explores the powerful relationship between mythology and storytelling in a clear, concise style that's made it required reading for movie executives, screenwriters, playwrights, scholars, and fans of pop culture all over the world. He has influenced the screenplays of movies from THE LION KING to FIGHT CLUB to BLACK SWAN to NOAH.

Pretty high praise from one of the best filmmakers working today. In this episode, I ask Chris to breakdown a bunch of concepts of the Hero's Journey, why it resinates with people around the world and what makes an amazing hero and villain.

Enjoy my conversation with Chris Vogler.

IFH 161: Building an Affordable Cinema Lens w/ Veydra Lenses’ Ryan Avery

June 15, 2017
00:0000:00

Veydra Mini Cinema Primes: Real Cinema Lenses You Can Afford

If you're an indie filmmaker and shoot your own stuff, the price of really good glass is generally too damn expensive and cinema-style primes lenses are totally out of reach...until now.

Until recently, the most cost effective cinema-style primes lenses have been pre-existing stills lenses, which can create problems with matching and physical layout. You have the "pulling focus issue" that still lenses have (top marks vs side marks for the 1st AC to pull focus).

Enter Veydra's Mini Cinema Primes. This amazing company has put the power back in the hands of the indie filmmaker at an affordable cost. These extremely compact lenses have an amazing build and image quality. They are light, compact and just gorgeous.

Today's guest is the co-founder of Veydra lenses Ryan Avery. We discuss all things lenses, what cinematographers are looking for and the core mission of Veydra, to help filmmakers. If you want to learn a bit more about how cinema lenses work or how a couple of filmmaking entrepreneurs built a killer company then take a listen.

THROWBACK FRIDAY: August Rush: The Million Dollar Screenplay Paul Castro

June 9, 2017
00:0000:00

Please note: Throwback Fridays are archival episodes from the Indie Film Hustle Podcast. After many requests from the IFH Tribe to bring back some of the show's best episodes, I decided to create Throwback Fridays. These episodes will not be posted every week but at least twice a month...if not more. 

There's so much amazing info and knowledge bombs in many of these past episodes and I don't want them to be lost in the sea of IFH Content so I'll be putting a spotlight on them in Throwback Fridays. Enjoy! 

August Rush: The Million Dollar Screenplay Paul Castro

We've all read in Variety or The Hollywood Reporter of some no name screenwriter selling his or her screenplay for a million bucks. Ever wonder how they did it? What structure did they use? What "tricks of the trade were" employed?

May I introduce Paul Castro, the original writer of one of my favorite films August Rush. Paul Castro is a produced, award winning screenwriter and world-renowned screenwriting professor.

"Structure...is the canvas on which we paint with words." - Paul Castro

His project, August Rush was produced by Warner Brothers and starred the late great Robin Williams, Keri Russell, Freddie Highmore and Jonathan Rhys Meyers. The film took Paul Castro into the belly of the Hollywood beast.

he business of screenwriting can be tough, but while a student at the UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television, he was a finalist for the Coca-Cola Refreshing Filmmaker's Award for directing and producing his original screenplay Healing, and landed a three-picture screenwriting deal worth $1 million.

The lessons he learned not only from selling August Rush but many other Hollywood screenwriting adventures were invaluable. He later went back and became a screenwriting professor at UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television, teaching thousands of students over his ten years of teaching.

Paul Castro teaches screenwriting from the inside out.” - Richard Walter, UCLA Screenwriting Chairperson.

After being a screenwriting professor, script doctoring and consulting Paul decided to create the ultimate screenwriting course. He calls it "The Million Dollar Screenplay." - IFH SPECIAL $10

I took the course myself and all I have to say is WOW! Paul teaches with an elegant style that's extremely understandable and straight to the point. Success leaves clues and so do masterfully crafted screenplays that sell for millions of dollars.

Paul Castro shows you those secrets. Not trying to do a hard sell here but I just love this course.

What clearly resonates with me is Paul’s love for and dedication to his students and to storytelling. He is a composed and practical artist and teacher, yet highly imaginative in his approach.” - Michael Eisner, Former CEO of The Walt Disney Company.

Here's some of what Paul covers in his course:

  • Professional screenwriting techniques
  • Plot development for the big screen
  • Creating compelling characters to attract movie stars
  • Winning dialogue
  • Structure to serve as the blueprint for your movie
  • Scene construction to evoke suspense
  • Sequence writing to manage an ensemble cast

After taking his course I reached out to him and asked him to be a guest on the podcast. What followed was not only a master class in screenwriting but also lessons on the film business and he also discussed how to discover your own voice as an artist. Pretty mind-blowing.

Enjoy this whopper of a podcast episode and if you haven't seen August Rush do yourself a favor and watch it. It's worth watching for Robin Williams alone!

If you're interested in downloading his course click here:
The Million Dollar Screenplay - IFH SPECIAL $10

Right click here to download the MP3
Download on iTunes Direct
Watch on IFH YouTube Channel

IFH 160: Ed Burns - How to Make a $9000 Feature Film (The Brothers McMullen)

June 5, 2017
00:0000:00

How to Make a $9000 Feature Film with Ed Burns

Many of you might have heard of the Sundance Film Festival winning film called The Brothers McMullen written and directed by Edward Burns. Burns went off to star in huge films like Saving Private Ryan and direct studio films like She's the One but what you might not know is he has been quietly making completely independent films on really low budgets. How low, how about $9000. 

As with any smart filmmaker, Ed Burns has continued to not only produce films but to consider new methods of getting his projects to the world. In 2007, he teamed up with Apple iTunes to release an exclusive film “Purple Violets”. It was a sign of the times that the director was branching out to new methods of release for his projects. In addition, he also continued to release works with his signature tried-and-true method of filmmaking. Using a very small $25,000 budget and a lot of resourcefulness, Burns created “Nice Guy Johnny” in 2010. Again- he was the writer and director. This is a formula that may intimidate a lesser performer, but he has proven that it works perfectly for his abilities.

The film “Nice Guy Johnny” was released at the Tribeca Film Festival. While he was releasing that film, Burns wrote “Newlyweds”, another film he directed and starred in. He filmed this on a small Canon 5D camera in only 12 days and on a budget of only $9,000.

In his book Independent Ed (which I recommend ALL filmmakers read), Ed Burns mentions some rules he dubbed “McMullen 2.0” which were basically a set of rules for independent filmmakers to shoot by.

  • Actors would have to work for virtually nothing.
  • The film should take no longer than 12 days to film
  • Don’t shoot with any more than a three man crew
  • Actor's use their own clothes
  • Actor's do their own hair and make-up
  • Ask and beg for any locations
  • Use the resources you have at your disposal

I used similar rules when I shot my feature film "This is Meg". I shot that in 8 days. Take a listen to this episode and prepare to get inspired. After you listen take a read of the making of The Brothers McMullen and read Independent Ed. You won't regret it.

Also, Ed Burns' DVD director's commentaries are indie filmmaking gold. He really shares his methods and all of his secret sauce. The DVD are direct cheap and well work getting. I'll put a list of them below. You won't regret it.

 

THROWBACK FRIDAY: Michael Hauge - Writing a Screenplay That Sells

June 2, 2017
00:0000:00

You are in for a treat. This week's guest, MICHAEL HAUGE has been one of Hollywood’s top script consultants, story experts, and authors for more than 30 years.

He coaches screenwriters, novelists, filmmakers, professional speakers, internet marketers and corporate leaders, helping transform their stories and their audiences using the principles and methods of Hollywood’s most successful movies.

Michael has consulted on films starring – among many others - Will Smith, Tom Cruise, Reese Witherspoon, Julia Roberts and Morgan Freeman, and has presented lectures and workshops to more than 70,000 participants worldwide.

He is the best-selling author of Writing Screenplays That Sell (now in its 20th Anniversary Edition) and Selling Your Story in 60 Seconds: The Guaranteed Way to Get Your Screenplay or Novel ReadAccording to Will Smith,

No one is better than Michael Hauge at finding what is most authentic in every moment of a story.” - Will Smith

After our interview with Michael Hauge and I decide to bring one of his best courses to the IFH Tribe. We called is Screenplay and Story Blueprint: The Hero's Two Journeys

IFH 159: How to Build a Film Brand w/ Zombie with a Shotgun’s Hilton Ruiz

June 1, 2017
00:0000:00

How to Build a Film Brand w/ Zombie with a Shotgun's Hilton Ruiz

I always talk about building a fan base and making art or products that can be sold to that audience. Well, today's guest is doing just that with his viral sensation Zombie with a Shotgun. Creator Hilton Ariel Ruiz created this film property and is really knocking it out of the park.

He has comic books, posters, a web series and soon to be produced feature film. I ask Hilton on the show because I kept seeing him pop up on my social media feeds. They man knows what he's doing. With close to a quarterr million Twitter followers the man knows how to build an audience.

ZOMBIE WITH A SHOTGUN is the feature adaptation of the popular web series of the same name. Aaron and Rachel are on the run due to the fact that Aaron is infected by what seems to be a zombie virus. As the story unfolds, they find that there is more to this infection than it seems. For some reason, he has not developed the full zombie virus. He seems to be trapped in a transitional phase which grants him certain abilities. One of them is the ability to communicate with other zombies. This makes Aaron a valuable pawn as he's being pursued by shadowy figures with ulterior motives. Now he must stay alive (or undead) long enough to figure out the source of his infection!

Enjoy my conversation with Hilton Ariel Ruiz.

THROWBACK FRIDAY: Post Production Workflow - Understand it or DIE!

May 26, 2017
00:0000:00

Please note: Throwback Fridays are archival episodes from the Indie Film Hustle Podcast. After many requests from the IFH Tribe to bring back some of the show's best episodes, I decided to create Throwback Fridays. These episodes will not be posted every week but at least twice a month...if not more. 

There's so much amazing info and knowledge bombs in many of these past episodes and I don't want them to be lost in the sea of IFH Content so I'll be putting a spotlight on them in Throwback Fridays. Enjoy! 

Post Production Workflow - Understand it or DIE!

I know I'm being a bit dramatic when I say...

"Understand Post Production Workflow or DIE!"

...but I've seen and been involved with so many independent films that just die in post production because of one simple thing, they didn't understand post production workflow.

Post Production Workflow is not a black art that only a few understand, granted it is getting more and more complicated these days but you as an indie filmmaker can still understand the basics.


Post Production Nightmare

Example: If you have a RED Dragon your director of photography can bring to the party when you're shooting your film great! Now what you need to ask yourself is what that "FREE" RED Dragon is going to cost you in post production.

If you had a plan of editing your film on you laptop forget about it. The post production workflow for the RED Dragon 6K is a beast and you would not be able to edit at home. You would then need to hired an editor who can handle that workflow and understands where his work is going to next, color grading.

This is fine if you budgeted for an editor but if you have no more money and you have all this amazing footage sitting on hard drives then you are screwed. I've worked on films with major movie stars in it that fell into this trap.

I'm not even going to bring up visual effects, that's another conversation entirely. Take a listen to this episode. I hope it shines a light on this dark little corner of independent film that is understanding your post production workflow.

IFH 158: How to Avoid Legal Pitfalls in Indie Film with Walter B. Batt Esq.

May 25, 2017
00:0000:00

If paperwork, contacts and E&O Insurance was as sexy as a new 8K camera then filmmaker would never get into legal trouble when making their film. Alas it is not sexy and filmmakers, myself included, hate even thinking about that side of the business. One thing I've learned over the years is if you don't understand the business side of "show business" you will get burned.

Filmmakers ask me legal advice all the time, why I have no idea, and I always say you should speak to an attorney and cover your butt. I've been wanting to have an attorney on the show for a while now to answer not only your legal questions but mine as well. Today's guest is entertainment attorney Walter B. Batt Attorney at Law.

Here's a bit about today's guest: Walter Batt is an Entertainment Attorney located in Los Angeles, California. Mr. Batt is a graduate of Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science in International Business and a Juris Doctor from the University of Miami-Coral Gables. Licensed in Florida and California, his boutique practice focuses, negotiation and contract development in addition to production support for films. With experience in myriad areas of entertainment and general business, Mr. Batt’s client base is diverse consisting of actors, production companies, public relations and marketing agencies, entrepreneurs, and distilled spirits manufacturing and distribution. As a former prosecutor, Mr. Batt occasionally represents selective clients in litigation matters, when required. As an avid exercise guy, Mr. Batt enjoys the gym in addition to films, friends and most of all his best clients--his dogs.

Here are some of the filmmaking legal pitfalls we discuss:

  • Can you shoot without a permit on the street?
  • Can you use a corporate logo in your film without permission?
  • What is the truth behind using logos in an indie film?
  • Can you shoot in front of a business with a logo and use it without permission?
  • Do you need to form a company to make a film?
  • Is it necessary to obtain a release from everyone whose face appears on camera?
  • How do I check whether my movie name is available?
  • How do I prepare a prospectus and/or investor memorandum for my film?
  • What type of insurance should a filmmaker consider?
  • What's the deal with referring to copyright/trademarked material in a script?
  • How do I copyright my script?
  • What are some good filmmaking legal resources are out there?
  • When should you begin to work with an entertainment attorney?

If you are making a feature, short, web series, streaming show or any content you plan to sell then this podcast is mandatory.

Enjoy my conversation with entertainment attorney Walter B. Batt.

IFH 157: How to Shoot 360 Video & Actually Make Money with Josh Gibson

May 18, 2017
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How to Shoot 360 Video & Actually Make Money with Josh Gibson

This week on the show we have Josh Gibson from 360 Video Academy. I know just enough about 360 video to be dangerous, and not in a good way. I wanted to bring Josh on the show to really break down the myths and techniques on how to shoot 360 video. I also wanted to dive into how filmmakers could ACTUALLY MAKE MONEY shooting 360 video.

Josh goes over not only the technical aspects of shooting 360 video but he also discusses how filmmakers can make money and a living shooting this exciting format.

 

How to Shoot 360 Video & Actually Make Money with Josh Gibson

This week on the show we have Josh Gibson from 360 Video Academy. I know just enough about 360 video to be dangerous, and not in a good way. I wanted to bring Josh on the show to really break down the myths and techniques on how to shoot 360 video. I also wanted to dive into how filmmakers could ACTUALLY MAKE MONEY shooting 360 video.

Josh goes over not only the technical aspects of shooting 360 video but he also discusses how filmmakers can make money and a living shooting this exciting format. Check out Josh talking shop on 360 video.

The 360 Video Academy is your one place to learn how to create professional-grade 360º video content. So get your GoPro 360 Video rig out and take some notes. Enjoy my conversation with Josh Gibson from 360 Video Academy.

THROWBACK FRIDAY: The Ultimate Guide to Film Distribution & Marketing w/ Jon Reiss

May 12, 2017
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Please note: Throwback Fridays are archival episodes from the Indie Film Hustle Podcast. After many requests from the IFH Tribe to bring back some of the show's best episodes, I decided to create Throwback Fridays. These episodes will not be posted every week but at least twice a month...if not more. 

There's so much amazing info and knowledge bombs in many of these past episodes and I don't want them to be lost in the sea of IFH Content so I'll be putting a spotlight on them in Throwback Fridays. Enjoy! 

Jon Reiss - The Ultimate Guide to Film Distribution & Marketing

Want to hear a crazy story on how one filmmaker used a hybrid distribution and marketing strategy to sell his film Bomb ItMay I introduce Jon Reiss.  After hearing his story I had to have him on the show so he can tell his story to the IFH Tribe.

Jon Reiss was named one of “10 Digital Directors to Watch” by Daily Variety, Jon Reiss is a critically acclaimed filmmaker whose experience releasing his documentary feature, Bomb It with a hybrid distribution and marketing strategy.

This strategy inspired him writing Think Outside the Box Office: The Ultimate Guide to Film Distribution and Marketing for the Digital Era, the first step-by-step guide for filmmakers to distribute and market their films. Two years ago he co-wrote Selling Your Film Without Selling Your Soul and last year co-wrote Selling Your Film Outside the U.S.: Digital Distribution in Europe. (FREE AUDIO BOOK VERSIONS HERE)

Jon Reiss teaches in the Film Directing Program at California Institute of the Arts. He created the course "Real World Survival Skills: Everything I Wish I Had Been Taught in Film School" which covers the practical/business aspects of filmmaking from fundraising through distribution.

Jon is a very interesting filmmaker. When I spoke to him he brought the heat and shared a ton of film marketing and distribution knowledge.

IFH 156: Secrets to Directing a Killer Action Sequence with Gil Bettman

May 9, 2017
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You are in for a treat IFH Tribe. Today's guest is directing guru Gil Bettman.Gil is a seasoned director shooting features, television, commercials and music videos for over 30 years. He has written two best-selling books: 

  • Directing the Camera: How Professional Directors Use a Moving Camera to Energize Their Films
  • First Time Director: How to Make Your Breakthrough Movie

One of his filmmaking mentors is Academy Award-winning director Robert Zemeckis. We discuss what lessons her learned from Mr. Zemeckis and he goes into great detail on how to shoot a killer action sequence. 

Here's some info on Gil Bettman:

No one would ever see Gil Bettman as the retiring type. Bring Academy Award-winning director Robert Zemeckis to his directing class and Bettman wades right in, challenging his old friend's point of view and sparking a good-natured debate about the best ways to tell a story using a camera. But that's Bettman's style. He has very definite opinions about how to block a camera or talk to actors from his days as a top action director for TV series like The Twilight Zone and Knight Rider.

Bettman learned the value of subjecting all film ideas to the acid test of a free-wheeling debate from Zemeckis himself while working as a screenwriter developing projects for Zemeckis at Universal and Warner Brothers. It's a lesson Bettman wants to pass on to his students as well.With a degree from Harvard (with honors in English Literature), as well as an M.F.A. from UCLA, Bettman has directed a wide range of projects from feature films to music videos and corporate profiles. He recently directed a feature documentary, The Long Road to Cabo, for rock icon Sammy Hagar, and published a textbook, First Time Director, through Michael Wiese Productions.

Enjoy my conversation with Gil Bettman. 

LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE

  • Gil Bettman - Website
  • Hollywood Film & Television Directing Masterclass (EXCLUSIVE 50% OFF)
  • [easyazon_link identifier="161593166X" locale="US" tag="whatisbroke-20"]Directing the Camera: How Professional Directors Use a Moving Camera to Energize Their Films[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier="0941188779" locale="US" tag="whatisbroke-20"]First Time Director: How to Make Your Breakthrough Movie[/easyazon_link]
  • [easyazon_link identifier="B00AOQ8MOQ" locale="US" tag="whatisbroke-20"]Point Break[/easyazon_link]

SPONSORS

  1. Directing Actors Master Course – (30% OFF – CODE: HUSTLE)
  2. Get Your Film on Netflix, Hulu & Amazon & Keep 100% off the Revenue - Distribber
  3. Hollywood Camera Work: Mastering High-End Blocking and Staging (30% OFF – CODE: HUSTLE)
  4. Werner Herzog's Filmmaking MasterClass
  5. Aaron Sorkin Screenwriting Master Class
  6. FreeFilmBook.com (Download Your FREE Filmmaking Audio Book)

KILLER RESOURCES!!!

  1. INDIE FILM SYNDICATE Filmmaking Community
  2. IFH's Online Film School
  3. Six Secrets to get into Film Festivals for FREE!

To share your thoughts:

To help the show:

Thanks to Gil for dropping some knowledge bombs. Check out some old school behind the scenes of Gil on the set of Never Too Young to Die. Until next time!

IFH TV - Syncing Dailies with Plural Eyes (Tutorial)

May 4, 2017
Watch Now:

Syncing Dailies with Plural Eyes (Tutorial)

If you ever wanted to learn how to sync your video dailies without going nuts then watch this. I started using PluralEyes a while ago and it has made my life in post production so much easier. Here's a quick tutorial on how you can use PluralEyes in your post production workflow.