Advanced Guide to Film Finance and Profitability- 6 Week Intensive with Business Pitch Workshop & Handouts

Payment plans available - contact Harrison at h.glaser@stage32.com for details
Taught by Jeanette Milio

$599
Class Schedule (6 sessions):
Wednesday, Jul 28TH 4 - 6PM PDT
Wednesday, Aug 4TH 4 - 6PM PDT
Wednesday, Aug 11TH 4 - 6PM PDT
Wednesday, Aug 18TH 4 - 6PM PDT
Wednesday, Aug 25TH 4 - 6PM PDT
Wednesday, Sep 1ST 4 - 6PM PDT
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Stage 32 Next Level Education has a 97% user satisfaction rate.

Class hosted by: Jeanette Milio

TV and Film Producer with a total production value of over $250 million

Jeanette Milio has been involved in the production of 500 plus hours of content of film and television for over twenty-five years across three continents, pulling in a total production value of over $250 million with Academy Award® winning talent in front of and behind the camera. Throughout her career, Jeanette was involved in financing over 45 film and television projects for HBO, Showtime, ABC, USA Network, Disney, Lionsgate, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., and others. Jeanette also managed a media fund for Far East National Bank, which funded 40 film and television projects, which led to her structuring her own media fund that financed theatrical features with a production volume of $60 million. Jeanette’s decades working and finding success in the film industry has given her a unique and unrivaled perspective of how to finance film content and make a profit. Full Bio »

Summary

“I learned more from Jeanette in this class than I’ve ever learned anywhere else. This class is a must for anyone who wants to learn how to get a tv/film project financed step by step. Jeanette leaves no stone left unturned and no question unanswered. Now matter where you are in your career, you will leave this class knowing exactly what needs to be done to get your projects financed.”

—Chantel C.

 

--Only 10 Spots Remain--

 

If you're considering producing your next (or first) project but are struggling to find the money or to understand the legal and financial steps that are necessary to take, this class is perfect for you. 

Not only will you learn the entire film finance process and gain tips and strategies you can directly apply to your own project, you will also receive a variety of resources to help you on your way, PLUS work one-on-one with accomplished producer and financier Jeanette Milio, one of our most popular instructors!

 

Jeanette Milio has been involved in the production of 500 plus hours of content of film and television for over twenty-five years across three continents, pulling in a total production value of over $250 million with Academy Award® winning talent in front of and behind the camera. Throughout her career, Jeanette was involved in financing over 45 film and television projects for HBO, Showtime, ABC, USA Network, Disney, Lionsgate, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., and others. Jeanette also managed a media fund for Far East National Bank, which funded 40 film and television projects, which led to her structuring her own media fund that financed theatrical features with a production volume of $60 million. Jeanette’s decades working and finding success in the film industry has given her a unique and unrivaled perspective of how to finance film content and make a profit.

Along the way you'll be able to stay in touch with Jeanette via email throughout the six week class. Jeanette will even conclude the class with an invaluable practice business pitch workshop where everyone can pitch to the class as if they were pitching to a potential investor and get personalized notes and suggestions afterwards.

 

Jeanette will ALSO provide in-depth case studies of recent projects, as well as exclusive and valuable handouts that you can take with you for your own project, including:

  • Sample Business Plans
  • Sample Budgets
  • Sales Estimate Sheets
  • Investor Pitch Decks
  • Sales Agency Agreement
  • Collection Account Management Agreements
  • Pay or Play Offer Template
  • Sample Option Agreement

 

 

Praise for Jeanette's Previous Stage 32 Class

 

"Thank you for organising this amazing class. It was eye opening and very inspirational. And Jeanette Milio is fantastic — so helpful and so open. She taught us so much within such short period of time."

-Jevgeni S.

 

 

“One of the best seminars ever. “

-Elio B.

What You'll Learn

During this intensive, advanced and interactive 6-week class, Jeanette will offer a deep exploration into the optimal way to finance your film so that you always make a profit.

 

Week 1: Industry Overview: The Independent Film Finance Model vs the Studio Finance Model.

  • How studios finance their films and generate profits
  • What to expect when you work with a studio
  • Comparing the studio finance model with the independent finance model
  • Why independent finance models are more transparent
  • Production and distribution options with studios
  • Case study: HARRY POTTER
  • Q&A with Jeanette

There will be an assignment after this session.

 

Week 2: How to Establish a Profitable Film Project.

  • Essential elements that create profitability for a film project.
  • Essential creative elements
  • Packaging talent and establishing the value
    • Attaching a director and cast
  • Creating a feasible budget that supports quality but allows for profit
  • Understanding essential financial elements to achieve profitability
    • And aligning the interests of the investor and producer
  • Understanding the importance of sales estimates
    • And how estimates and pre-sales relate to your search for funding
  • Q&A with Jeanette

Take away materials:

  • Story structure graph
  • Play-or-Play template
  • Sample Budget
  • Sales Estimate template

There will be an assignment after this session.

 

Week 3: Distribution – The Devil Is In the Details

  • Defining your audience and your market
    • And how your genre will dictate your marketplace
  • Navigating your distribution strategy and establishing the right plan for your specific project
  • Deep dive of distribution options today
    • Theatrical
    • Streamer
    • Network
    • Co-productions
    • Licensing
    • Buy-on
    • Much more
  • Protecting distribution revenues
  • Pitfalls of distribution agreements
  • How to find the right sales agent
    • And how to keep him/her on track
  • Q&A with Jeanette

Take away materials: Summary sheet with all essential terms and conditions for a sales agency agreement

 

There will be an assignment after this session.

 

Week 4: Putting Together a Solid Financial Plan

  • An exploration of the main financial sources today
    • Bank loans
    • Mezzanine
    • Subsidies
    • Equity
    • Brand Integration
    • Deferments
    • In-Kind Services
    • Music Investment
    • More
  • Understanding the requirements and the optimal balance of financial sources to create profitability
  • Collateral
    • What assets do financiers and lenders require, and how to give them what they need
  • Why 100% equity doesn’t work
  • The best way to include equity investments
    • What portion of the budget should be equity and why
  • How to secure “ring-fencers”
  • Understanding the “Waterfall”
    • Who recoups what, when and why
    • Who gets paid what, when, and why
  • Case Study: Financing a Film Project from scratch
  • Q&A with Jeanette

Take away material: Excel Finance Plan Template

 

There will be an assignment after this session.

 

Week 5: Risk Mitigation

  • Understanding the major risks risks
    • Production
    • Distribution
    • Finance
    • Revenues
  • Eliminating risks
    • Completion bonds
    • Collection agents
    • Feasible financial plans
    • Avoiding distribution pitfalls
  • The investor checklist
  • Non-recoupable financial sources
    • Free money you can take advantage of
    • Related terms and conditions
  • Designing a risk-averse business plan for a project (essential terms and conditions to attract investors)
  • Q&A with Jeanette

Take away materials: CAMA Agreement draft

 

There will be an assignment after this session.

 

Week 6: Business Plan Pitch Workshop

 

  • Everyone will have the opportunity to pitch their business plan to Jeanette and the class as if they were a potential investor and get invaluable feedback

 

 

WHAT TO EXPECT

  • **Jeanette will be available on email during the 6 class sessions to answer any questions you have about your project**
  • This class is designed for beginner, intermediate and advanced students looking to learn the ins and outs of film financing
  • This is an in-depth, practical, and detailed class with significantly more content than a standard 90-minute webinar.
  • This class will consist of six sessions, each roughly two hours in duration. In addition to the presentation-style lessons where Jeanette will be walking you through various elements of film financing, you will have the opportunity to ask her questions during each session.
  • ***Only 20 Spots Available - 10 Spots Remain***
  • Plus, to stay motivated and inspired, you will have access to a private, dedicated Stage 32 Lounge where you can communicate with your fellow classmates throughout the process.
  • To see the full class schedule, see below under "What You Will Learn".

About Your Instructor

Jeanette Milio has been involved in the production of 500 plus hours of content of film and television for over twenty-five years across three continents, pulling in a total production value of over $250 million with Academy Award® winning talent in front of and behind the camera. Throughout her career, Jeanette was involved in financing over 45 film and television projects for HBO, Showtime, ABC, USA Network, Disney, Lionsgate, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., and others. Jeanette also managed a media fund for Far East National Bank, which funded 40 film and television projects, which led to her structuring her own media fund that financed theatrical features with a production volume of $60 million. Jeanette’s decades working and finding success in the film industry has given her a unique and unrivaled perspective of how to finance film content and make a profit.

Schedule

Week 1: Industry Overview - Wednesday 7/28/21, 4pm-6pm PT

Week 2: How to Establish a Profitable Film Project - Wednesday 8/4/21, 4pm-6pm PT

Week 3: Distribution -Wednesday 8/11/21, 4pm-6pm PT

Week 4: Putting Together a Solid Financial Plan - Wednesday 8/18/21, 4pm-6pm PT

Week 5: Risk Mitigation - Wednesday 8/25/21, 4pm-6pm PT

Week 6: Business Plan Pitch Workshop-Wednesday 9/1/21, 4pm-6pm PT

If you can't make a live virtual class, don't worry. It will be recorded and you can watch it at your leisure on demand.

FAQs

Q: What is the format of a class?
A: Stage 32 Next Level Classes are typically 120-minute broadcasts that take place online using a designated software program from Stage 32.

Q: Do I have to be located in a specific location?
A: No, you can participate from the comfort of your own home using your personal computer! If you attend a live online webinar, you will be able to communicate directly with your instructor during the class.

Q: What are the system requirements?
A: You will need to meet the following system requirements in order to run the webinar software: Windows 7 or later Mac OS X 10.9 (Mavericks) or later.
If you have Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion): The webinar software does not support these operating systems. If you are running one of those operating systems, please upgrade now in order to be able to view a live class. Upgrade your Windows computer / Upgrade your Mac computer

Q: What if I cannot attend the live class?
A: If you attend a live online class, you will be able to communicate directly with your instructor during the class. If you cannot attend a live class, you will have access to the entire recorded broadcast, including the Q&A. Plus, your instructor will be available via email throughout the lab.

Q: Will I have access to the lab afterward to rewatch?
A: Yes! After the purchase of the lab, you will have on-demand access to the video recording, which you can view after the class is complete.

Questions?

If you have a generic question about Stage 32 education you can take a look at our frequently asked questions section on our help page, or feel free to contact support with any other inquiries you might have.

Other education that may be of interest to you:

How to Finance Your Own Independent Television Series

The surge of television platforms, networks, and streamers in recent years has drastically opened up the world of television content production, spelling good news for aspiring content creators around the world. We’re not just talking Netflix and Amazon; countless other channels and streamers like Tubi, Roku, Snap, and many more are actively building their slates and looking for new content to buy outright. With these opportunities, it’s more than possible to create, sell and be profitable on your own independent TV series. Yet this does not mean it’s easy. Financing and recouping costs for independent television production requires a firm understanding of the constantly changing TV landscape and opportunities available to secure funding. With the rules and trends of television changing so frequently, it is difficult to be on top of where opportunities lie. Standard and subscription networks are losing revenue to streamers, and their acquisition budgets are decreasing. At the same time, streamers prefer buying all rights, and spend much less money on digital rights only, which disrupts the financial model. And many investors who are more used to funding films are resistant to TV shows without the splashy premiere and red carpets that they’re used to. These challenges and more stand in the way of fully financing your own television project, but they can all be overcome with the right approach and understanding. Over twenty-five years and working across three continents, Jeanette Milio has been involved in the production of over 500 hours of content for film and television, with a total production value of over $250 million, and including Academy Award® winning talent in front of and behind the camera. Recently, Jeanette has focused on the development, financing, and production of television series. She co-created, co-financed and executive produced the beauty competition series GLOBAL BEAUTY MASTERS on TLC and its spin-off series THE LOOK ALL-STARS on The CW. She further managed the renowned dog series TV series and brand DOG WHISPERER WITH CESAR MILLAN, which aired for 9 seasons on the National Geographic Channel and sold in over 180 countries. In 2020 Jeanette co-created, financed, and produced two seasons for the new series DOG MASTERS, starring Laura Nativo and Alex Rossi, which is being represented by The Gersh Agency for the U.S. and international distribution. Jeanette’s decades working and finding success in the TV industry has given her a unique and unrivaled perspective of how to finance television content and get it sold. Jeanette will lay out step-by-step how you can successfully finance your own content for television in today’s ever-changing ecosystem. She’ll begin by taking a look at the independent TV space today, what’s being produced, what’s selling and what opportunities are out there aside from Netflix. She will identify available funding sources and go through the rules of financing you need to understand. She’ll then go into what effective TV pitch documents need to include for investors and how to make your stand out. Next, Jeanette will give you tips on how to secure “free money” for your project by leaning into things like co-productions, subsidies, and tax incentives. She’ll explain how you can mitigate risks for yourself and your team and teach you how to create your own IP to attract audiences and therefore investors and distributors. Jeanette will explain distribution deals that are available today and help you understand how to determine which deal is right for you and your project. Finally, Jeanette will identify the biggest potential pitfalls for producers and investors that you need to avoid. It’s more possible than ever before to fund, produce, and sell your own independent TV content, especially if you can understand the rules to follow and the traps to avoid that Jeanette will thoroughly lay out.

Film Financing Today: The Best Way to Make a Profit with your Film In Today’s Marketplace

As an independent filmmaker or producer, you probably start working on a new project for creative reasons—the chance to tell an amazing story, build worlds, create something of cultural value. Yet your independent film is not just a creative endeavor; it’s also a business. You’re sourcing financing and bringing in investors, building a team, and creating a property that will (hopefully) ultimately make money. To operate successfully in the world of independent film and continue to make films that you’re proud of, you need to be able to understand the dynamics and the relation between financing, distribution and recoupment of film investments so you and your investors can both leave with a profit. The business side of films is often especially difficult for filmmakers and creative producers, but it's actually more possible than you think. No matter how big or small your film is, there are multiple ways you can find funding and multiple ways you can ultimately create profitability. And while it might not be second nature for creatives, once you get a handle on how to make this process work for you, you will also be able to create a business model that you can apply to your future projects, and eventually a portfolio of profitable assets (or films) that will serve as an effective and undeniable calling card as you continue to grow in the industry. Over twenty-five years and working across three continents, Jeanette Milio has been involved in the production of over 500 hours of content for film and television, with a total production value of over $250 million, and including Academy Award® winning talent in front of and behind the camera. Throughout her career, Jeanette was involved in financing over 45 film and television projects for HBO, Showtime, ABC, USA Network, Disney, Lionsgate, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., and others. Jeanette also managed a media fund for Far East National Bank, which funded 40 film and television projects, which lead to her structuring her own media fund that financed theatrical features with a production volume of $60 million. Jeanette’s decades working and finding success in the film industry has given her a unique and unrivaled perspective of how to finance film content and make a profit. Exclusively for Stage 32, Jeanette will give a realistic, accessible, and straightforward presentation of the best way to actually finance your film and make a profit in today’s market. She’ll go over the differences between the studio finance model and independent finance model and then delve into how distribution can work best for you and how you can take advantage of more options than you think. Jeanette will also lay out how you can establish profitability for your film by explaining the essential ingredients necessary for a profit, going over how to create a budget and teaching you how you can best align your interests with the investor’s. Jeanette will break down the financial sources available today and give you tips on how you should be balancing multiple sources and mitigate risks for investors at the same time. She’ll even walk you through the complicated “waterfall” process of recoupment. Financing your film is more possible than you might think, even if you’re just getting started, and Jeanette will give you the tools and confidence to be able to take the necessary steps for your own project.   PLUS: Jeanette will provide exclusive and helpful documents to take home with you after, including: Collection Account Management Agreement Example Pay or Play Offer Draft Finance Plan Template for Microsoft Excel     Praise for Jeanette's Stage 32 Webinar   “This was an excellent overview of all that is involved, and a great encouragement to reach out to people who do this kind of thing for a living, instead of trying to do it by myself for the first time.” - Sarah D.   “Jeanette was so detailed about the how to's and why you need to take and research every step. I love getting the details that really feel behind the curtain.” - Melissa B.   “I liked it. Specifically, the content. Jeanette was very informative and clearly knows her stuff.” - Crystal B.   “Explanation of pre-sales and budget breakdown was very informative.” - Roc R.        

How to Shoot Your Project Safely During COVID

The COVID-19 pandemic brought film production to a standstill last year. The risk of holding close gatherings required everyone to profoundly change how a film is produced in order to keep everyone safe. Yet we’ve luckily found a way to create new projects, on both a major studio and independent level. This doesn’t mean it’s easy, though. The preparation and process for producing a film have changed drastically, as have the rules and guidelines a crew needs to follow. There are ways to safely put your own film together even under these extreme circumstances, but doing so will require a new understanding of how to move forward. As a producer or filmmaker of any level, it’s your job not just to make sure a film comes together, but that the team you assembled stays safe in the process. This is extra difficult due to the pandemic, but it’s not impossible. In fact, independent productions have been finding a ways to do this successfully for a while now and you can as well. But this won’t be accomplished through business-as-usual approaches. Every aspect of the filmmaking process needs to be examined, altered, or even turned on its head in order to comply with new regulations, make the team feel comfortable, and most importantly to keep everyone virus-free. This is a big undertaking, but other independent outfits have figured this out, and learning how they did it can be instrumental in you finding success for your own project. Multi Emmy Award-winning filmmaker and author Shane Stanley has worked in almost every capacity on and off the set with hit shows like ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT and SEINFELD and producing films like Sony Pictures’ GRIDIRON GANG a #1 box office hit starring Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson. For three years, Shane was Vice President of Sheen/Michaels Entertainment where he produced several motion pictures starring Marlon Brando, Mira Sorvino, Thomas Hayden Church, Donald Sutherland, Marisa Tomei, Sean Penn, John Travolta, and Charlie and Martin Sheen.. Shane recently released his book What You Don’t Learn In Film School, which covers filmmaking from concept to delivery and has already landed on required reading lists at several universities across the country. Shane continues to produce and direct independent films of all levels, and just wrapped production on his latest action thriller BREAK EVEN, which was safely shot over December and January during the peak of COVID-19. Shane learned how to find success in the midst of a pandemic and is ready to share the lessons he picked up. Shane will teach you what you need to do to successfully and safely plan and produce a film during the COVID-19 pandemic. He’ll delve into the new rules you need to follow, issued by guilds, government agencies and film/permit offices. He’ll also discuss how location scouting works now and what sort of locations can be safely shot in. He’ll go through the changes in production insurance and how to hire and work with a COVID Compliance Officer during production. Shane will also discuss how to conduct COVID tests with your crew and how to work with guilds along the way. He will then go over how to work with actors during this time and will share with you the biggest tips and must-dos he learned to keep your crew safe. Finally, Shane will share the details of how he produced his own recent film DOUBLE THREAT and wrapped his 6 week production without a single COVID positive test. Even in times as tough as this, there’s a way forward and a way to create your art, and Shane will show you how to do so smartly, effectively, and while keeping yourself and everyone on your team safe.   Praise for Shane's Previous Stage 32 Webinar    "Shane was thorough, gave me a realistic view into the market as it is now, yet encouraging. Easy to listen to and follow. I'll be signing up for other classes he teaches in the future." -Karena K.   Just straight-forward, real, the kind of producer most of us would kill to work alongside. -Clark R.   "Shane was relevant, knew what was happening, and could walk the walk." -Chuck R.   "I loved the inside look from someone in the industry that is dealing with Covid restrictions on a daily basis." -Marven L.

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The backbone of the entertainment industry was shaken to the core after the trades announced one of the major festivals - SXSW was going to cancel its in-person festival. Shortly after festival after festival had to adapt to a new way of doing things - should they present their festival live and take a chance of it being cancelled? Or, should they present their festival virtually bringing on a new slew of challenges? Navigating this "new normal" has rocked the industry and has left many filmmakers scratching their heads about what it all means. Should you release your film in this new format? Or should you hold onto it and wait it out, with the fear of another year going by without it seeing the light of day? Despite the ongoing shift to a virtual, watch-from-home and hybrid model, film festivals continue to serve as an important platform for your film to make its debut. Your film can continue to find attention, distribution and other successes from participating, yet there are new questions and considerations you should factor into evaluating which festivals to submit to. The current spirit of cooperation and collaboration between festivals during the pandemic has radically changed, creating lots of new and exciting ways you can benefit from the circuit. But, with the excitement, there is also a lot of confusion about premiere status, virtual screenings vs online screenings, and more. Outside of getting your film into a festival, there are things you can learn from what the successful festival films are seeing that you can apply to your own film and its release. Whether you are a feature filmmaker or a short filmmaker you need to understand and embrace the new practices emerging among festivals presenting virtual and hybrid events. It’s time you take stock of the situation. Kimberley Browning is an independent filmmaker, the Associate Short Film Programmer at the Tribeca Film Festival and the founder of the long-running short film screening series Hollywood Shorts. Kimberley is also the Executive Producer of HBO ACCESS Directors Fellowship, the network's program developing and launching underrepresented voices into episodic television. Formerly a short film programmer for both the Los Angeles Film Festival and Guadalajara International Film Festival Los Angeles, Kimberley has a long history of working with film festivals and continues to serve as a festival consultant for many independent filmmakers. Kimberley has built her storied career around elevating new voices and empowering them to get their projects out into the world. Kimberley will delve into how filmmakers are finding success with their new films during the pandemic and how you can use film festivals as well as other practices to successfully release your own short or feature film. She’ll begin by explaining how you should be setting your gals and building your strategies to get your film out there. She’ll talk about new practices to build an audience, strategy essentials—with or without COVID—and how you should now be defining success and whether it needs to evolve due to the pandemic. Next Kimberley will focus on film festivals and show you what the new festival landscape and vocabulary looks like. She’ll explain what the best digital platforms festivals are utilizing and which to avoid. She’ll also teach you what ‘geocaching’ is and how to determine your geofencing options. She will go over DRM protections and how to keep your film safe when screening virtually and will talk about the difference between virtual screenings and online screenings. Next Kimberley will delve into the new film festival calendar, how the overall festival circuit is shifting due to date changes and postponements. She’ll give you the rundown of how to read small print before submitting to festivals to make sure you know what you need to know ahead of time. She’ll walk through how you should revamp your festival strategy to better navigate COVID and how you should now be communicating with a festival team. Kimberley will also talk about how to now navigate premiere status with festivals and explain how virtual festivals impact your film’s status and its ability to get distributor attention. She’ll also talk about how media and distributors are now navigating new rules in 2020 to find work with films. Next she will teach you how to navigate a virtual festival if your film is accepted, including how to promote your film to a virtual audience and how to build relationships and make connections without in-person events. Beyond festivals, Kimberley will give you strategies to promote and market your film to a general audience for its virtual release including if and how to work with publicists and new social media strategies to start employing. Kimberley will talk about other release strategies for your film beyond film festivals. She’ll give you tips on how to host your own independent online premiere. She’ll also give you a rundown of how to find distributors in a distanced world and how to operate long-standing marketplaces like AFM that are now turning virtual. Finally Kimberley will go over ways to self-distribute your film during quarantine, including if and how to work with aggregators to maximize your release. This is a tough time to release your film—rules and practices have changed across the board—but it’s still possible to find success and Kimberley will show you how to achieve this with your own film.   Praise for Kimberley's Stage 32 Webinar   "Kimberley was very engaging which isn't easy when there is no audience interaction. Her presentation hit the middle ground between newbies and more seasoned festival goers which was very helpful because we are all newbies in this virtual festival world...both presenters and filmmakers alike." -Laurie C.   "Good perspective, useful advice." -Mick H.   "It was great!" -Daniel G.   "I loved how knowledgeable Kimberley was. She gave me so many ideas of how to move forward with my film" -Karen B.

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