Filmmaking / Directing : Pitching a filmstoryidea to filmproducer by Anika Neubauer

Anika Neubauer

Pitching a filmstoryidea to filmproducer

Hi friends, I hope I´m right here... ;-) I just finished creating a factsheet about my upcoming filmstory for Cannes but in aspect of different cultural guidelines in filmmaking I´m confused and so I would like to ask you, if you know a link or article or anyone from US who can tell me what exactly does a US-Producer or potencial native scriptauthor needs to know about the filmidea in service of getting partners attached to the project? I mean, is there anything required next to Logline, Summary and Synopsis? Do they want to read a few pages from the treatment to get an idea of the tone, do they need more backgroundinformations about the true facts the story is based on? How about target-audiences? Do I really need to explain a Pro something about the genre targets? I guess, especially the US-Pros are way better informed about their box office numbers as I am here in Europe but however, if you have an tipps or guidelines for me in service of understanding the international filmmarket, please help me out, in hope other non-Americans have similar problems of understanding the US-filmmarket, so this discussion will attract many people in service of a better intercultural understanding.. Thank you! Best regards from Germany Anika

Regina Lee

Hi Anika, sorry I don't have a lot of time today to write. What I will say is that for Cannes in particular (not unlike Toronto, Berlin, or AFM in California), you are better off presenting a more fully packaged project. For example, if you are a screenwriter, ideally, you would have a producer in place already, a director, and/or some cast already attached. Then you could meet with sales agents and distributors at Cannes in an effort to raise financing. Typically, people go to Cannes to discuss later stage projects, not early development. But there's an exception to every rule.

Regina Lee

Hopefully, other people have time to add more details for you. Good luck!!

Michael Jordan

Estimated domestic / foreign sales / if or any other financing that is attached. Whose the ideal target market? Is it a summer blockbuster or a winter's tale ...these are just a few things I have heard asked. Hope that helps :)

Anika Neubauer

Hi Regina, thanks for your post and yes, in front of any filmfestival/-market everyone is just busy getting ready on time. You are propably right that Cannes isn´t the best place for early stage projects but how shall I say, the deeper you get into a story you suddenly find people being attracted to the idea and gets you going even deeper. In my case I could attract a leading European scriptdoctor who told me that the story is way too good for producing it as a kind of "Expandables" film, so we all decided to step back into development in aspect getting the best out of the storyidea. So, call it early stage or late corrections process, sometimes in filmindustry nothing happens the way you expect or plan it, so we booked our Cannes-appartment many months ago in service of being ready for Cannes but well Berlinale meetings changed a lot and so I have to accept it never works the way you expect in filmindustries...! :-) Anyway, in aspect of my past Cannes-experiences I can only say, there are no existing rules for Cannes because everything is possible. ;-)

Anika Neubauer

Hi Michael, Thank you for your great informations, these are exactly the informations I was looking out for. I was just confused because in Europe filmindustry rules are different to the US-market and seriously in businessaspect I better follow your US-film strategies and concepts but sometimes it´s hard to understand the american filmmarket when you are living in Germany. Thanks for your great support! :-)

Erik A. Jacobson

Regina is right, Anika. Film markets like Cannes, Berlin, and AFM are generally for projects that are packaged or in late development. The exception would be scripts that are represented by sales agents or distribs. Not sure if you've taken it, but Stage 32 has a great seminar on packaging that might help. At the very least, you should put together a Business Plan for the project that includes your target audience, genre, budget, track record, talent attachments, ROI expectations, etc. The films that attract the most interest are those which already have some attachments and/or financing in place.

Anika Neubauer

Hi Eric, thank you for your kind informations and no, I wasn´t aware stage 32 is also having a webinar about packaging a project. Great, I plan to follow more webinars here anyway in future, so this special one will be a great help as well. THANK YOU!

Michael Patrick Ford

Anika, The best help I can give you is to look on Facebook for a group called "The Inside Pitch". It is full of working Hollywood Writers & Development people who are very active in the industry & all have produced work. Its the best resource I know of for Pitching & Development.

Anika Neubauer

Really? That's cool. Thanks, will follow your idea.

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