There was something that was said by the producers in the meeting on Monday that I kinda glossed over at the time, but it was around the moment that the tone of the meeting changed. Thinking back on it now — and reading between the lines a bit — it seems to be a recurring theme with the initial excitement and then sudden cold feet we’ve experienced when it comes to financing Red Yesterday, and Reverberations before this…
…we are “first time filmmakers.”
That sentence in itself is bullshit. Brian and I have made lots of films over the years. But they’ve all been shorts. This will be our feature debut. And that scares off a lot of money people.
TRUE STORY… a producer friend of mine signed on to produce a feature with another producer. The writer/director had just come off an extremely successful festival run with his short. A financier loved the script and the pitch and was ready to put the money up to finance the film in full. But then he discovered that it would be the director’s first feature and got instant cold feet. Meanwhile, the other producer had directed a feature a couple years ago, and it was (by all accounts) TERRIBLE. So terrible that he never wanted to direct again. Back to our financier… he said he would still invest IF the producer would direct instead, simply because he’s had experience directing a feature. Nevermind the fact that that experience did not go well.
This, of course, is why we’ve pivoted to this new script, with an even smaller budget. So we can basically just go and make it ourselves and not have to rely on those “gatekeepers”.
Sometimes our industry is dumb.