Wednesday, September 20, 2006

American Film Market

Haven't written here in a while, so I thought I'd give a quick update...

AFM is right around the corner (first week in November) and I've been feverishly readying my film "Killing Down" for the event. We just got new key artwork done (for the third time) and we're pretty sure everyone (me, producer's rep, graphic designers, etc.) are happy.

Funny thing is we've somewhat fallen into that cliched trap of the "artist" versus the "suits" with comments and questions like...

1. We don't like the title...
2. Have you considered changing the title?
3. "Killing" does not test well with women
4. What about changing the title?
5. Are you sure you like orange?
6. Not sure about the movie title

Fun stuff, but you'll notice that the title is still the same! :)

We're getting our one-sheets (sell sheets really) printed tomorrow and sending out 100 DVD screeners to various foriegn sales agents, distributors, etc. We unfortunately don't have time to set up an industry screening before the market. Although, depending on what rights we sell, we might have one afterwards (I'm thinking we'll hold on to our North American rights unless we get a really good offer).

Biggest problem is all the distribution companies generally want their films at least 30 days before a market. This leaves us very little time. We hope to make a deal in the next 10 days or so - but we don't want to jump into something we'll regret later. It's a tough situation. If we wait and don't attend AFM, the next market is Berlin and they don't really cater to action/thriller type films. Then after that is Cannes, which is in May - that's too long to wait. So, it's really important that we make something happen in the next two weeks.

It's an exciting time and we hope that all our hard work will pay off soon. Please wish us luck!

BTW, I do realize my film is probably the most "commercial" film on this blog, but just because it's more commercial definitely doesn't mean it's not independent. Believe me, it is, in just about every aspect you can imagine. Heck, my step-dad even did craft service. :)



Sujewa [Blog Admin] said...

Hey Blake,

Best of luck at AFM.

So far the most commercial film on the blog is Head Trauma i believe, according to a Philly weekely (paper name?, will have link soon) it has already grossed $300K, before the DVD release, according to the article. most excellent, go lance!

and i think all films are commercial, just some are waay more commercial than others :) i think any film that people pay money to see is commercial.

i know of some indie art movies that have made more money than some indie action adventure flicks.

anyway, best of luck at AFM. looking forward to seeing KD at some point.

- Sujewa

Blake Calhoun said...

Yeah, I was thinking Head Trauma too was commercial. All I was really saying is that my film is not like Joe's "LOL" or even your "Date Number One". I consider those more art/indie films than "commercial" fare. But, you make a good point that if folks pay money then it's commercial. Anyway, thanks for the good wishes and I also want to see your film soon - I never have even seen a trailer. :)


Sujewa [Blog Admin] said...

Hey Blake,

I haven't seen a trailer for my movie yet either :) :) :) Perhaps one day I will.

My flick Date Number One is a comedy/romantic comedy, which are both very popular genres, as horror & action adventure are. The difference between DNO & a H-wood comedy is the stars (no stars in DNO), & the budget (a very lowwww budget in DNO). Other than that, its not very arty - or similar to other comedies/romantic comedies out there.

Maybe Jem Cohen's Chain can be considred an art film, of the indie films that are being shown around this year.

But even Chain sells tickets. Hmmm, maybe Warhol's Empire is an art film. Is anyone making art films anymore? Or is it just all various levels of commercial film? Interesting question.

There certainly is no art film aesthetic any more - all once non-Hollywood stylistic inventions now show up on tv & in Hollywood & indiewood movies.

Maybe art film does not exist. Or never did - outside of home movies or movies that people make strictly for themselves, not to share w/an audience, at least not in exchange for cash.

I guess they don't have this question in painting, since all paintings (besides propaganda & advertisement) are considered art.

I guess in film the moment you start charging people $s to watch your movie it is no longer strictly an art film, but perhaps a very creative commercial film with limited appeal.

Reminds me, Pasolini thought that literature/a novel is art but movies are commercial products (even his).

Anyway, talk 2 ya soon. Looking forward to reading your AFM updates.

- Sujewa