Adding to this, how about innovation in terms of distribution and attracting audiences?
Maybe, but probably not. This may sound cynical, but it depends a lot on who you know and what kind of name/reputation you have. If Kathryn Bigelow (just naming a random, famous female director) walked into a funder’s office and said she was going to do a new web series that increased women’s representation, she’d get a meeting and might well get a grant. But without that kind of social capital, it can be tough to get a foot in the door.
So then what do you suggest for those just starting out? How can they gain that social capital?
There are no shortcuts that I’m aware of. You’ve got to produce really good work, and then you have to hustle your ass off to get it seen. It’s that simple and that hard.
Are there things you’ve seen that are worth the ‘hustle’ more than others? What can more filmmakers be doing to make the most of their hustling?
I’m honestly not aware of too many great ones. You could argue that Netflix and Amazon have a decent amount of “indie” content, but I assume you’re talking about lesser known (i.e. truly indie, low budget, etc.) stuff. I see this as a market opportunity, frankly. There are lots of people out there who are interested in discovering new voices. To some extent there’s a signal-to-noise problem, which means people need really good curators to help find good content from artists they’ve never heard of. Hopefully Stareable has a role to play here!!
Hopefully we do! We’re always looking to amplify the opportunity for low budget yet high talent filmmakers and projects to get discovered. Any advice or feedback is always welcomed
This is probably a very boring, conventional answer, but I’d point to film festivals. Getting your work seen at Sundance hugely increases your chances of finding a distributor or an investor for your next film. For the time being, Sundance, Tribeca, Cannes, etc. are still the places where industry power congregates. But it can take a lot of work to get there.
Another thought is to step into the curator role and support other indie filmmakers (and their audiences). That builds crediility, expands your network, and earns social capital.
What’s the most impactful change you’ve seen in media in the last year?
We've got an AMA for that!
Sorry, missed this one on my first pass. I think nonprofits have to prove their value more than ever before. We live in a transparent, data-driven world, so it’s getting harder and harder to coast on past wins or name recognition. There’s also much more competition from for-profit service providers, which I believe is a good thing, but requires non-profits to compete in a different way.
I’d probably point to the ongoing emergence of immersive media (is that the right umbrella term??) – VR/AR/MR. These are forcing storytellers to develop a whole new vocabulary and conventions, which is super exciting and rare. The last time this happened was probably when video games first arrived.
Alright folks that about does it for @AdamTheHutt! Thanks so much for being here, Adam, and don’t be a stranger! We’d love your thoughts on the many other things happening in the Stareable community, and could always use your level head and business sense for advice!
Thanks @Bri_Castellini! I enjoyed being here. I love what you guys are doing and I’m pulling for all the artists here.