Filmmaking / Directing : Do you really want your films promoted? by Doug Nelson

Doug Nelson

Do you really want your films promoted?

I wonder if today’s filmmakers really understand how important it is to actively promote their films/work. From my perspective – I don’t think so. I produce a modest little cable network show called the Northwest Independent Filmmaker’s Showcase (NIFS) in which I exhibit NW Indie short films and provide the filmmaker the opportunity to introduce his film or not (I’ll do it). Filmmakers spend money to submit their films to festivals – where it may/may not be selected (if not, you don’t get your money back.) The festivals use the films to promote it self – not the filmmakers so much. I offer a television broadcast platform designed to promote filmmakers – all for free – and I can’t find enough films. I try to contact filmmakers – but they don’t return my calls or e-mails. I talk with them at festivals but they don’t follow through. I’m rapidly concluding that I’m wasting my time trying to help people who do not want help. Most of you seem content to produce stealth movies for YouTube. Filmmakers – what do you have to say for yourselves?

Doug Nelson

From the lack of comments - I guess not.

Majiye Uchibeke

What's the television broadcast platform about?

Michael Wearing

Doug just an idea, speak with filmfreeway and see if they will let you list. When The Rob Knox Film Festival was free I got over 2000 entries in a couple of months, be prepared for films of all quality. You will get masterpieces but you will also get some that make you wonder why they bothered. As a filmmaker I would be happy to consider submitting some of my films to your channel. However I do think you need to tell me more about it so that I know that you aren't making a profit at the expense of my hard work... I would also need to weigh up the possibility of over exposure of a film too early in its life.

Doug Nelson

I would have thought that to be fairly evident. I produce a modest little half hour television (28 min run time) show locally aired on one of the cable networks. By keeping it to a half hour format, I can run a couple of shorts and do a filmmaker promotion – on some occasions, I invite the filmmaker onto the set to introduce his film. The filmmaker retains all rights to the film – every da*n last one. I do this for free – it’s my hobby as a retired old Producer. I go out of my way to help and encourage new filmmakers. I don’t charge filmmakers nor do I pay them. The filmmaker gets a television credit and more eyes on his film – free! You can pay money to submit your film to a festival where it may/may not be accepted and you have a limited audience exposure – a couple of hundred? The market demographics of these little cable shows is fairly modest and I don’t know for sure but I think I reach about half a million folks. So there you have it – I don’t know much clearer I can make it. My long term goal is to figure out a way to monetize short films for small independent filmmakers. (I’m workin’ on it and I’ll let you know when I’ve figured it out.) So back to my original question: Why are small independent filmmakers so reluctant to promote themselves?

Doug Nelson

Michael – First off; I’m retired. I don’t need or want your money. As to the quality of the films, my standards are fairly high. I see a lot of pure & simple crap every day.

Rachel Ann Mullins

I'll be on your show

Doug Nelson

I appreciate your offer Rachel but I notice that you're down in LA. My show is titled the Northwest Independent Filmmaker's Showcase. The NWIFS presents films and promotes filmmakers throughout the northwest which I define that as Nor CA, OR, WA, BC, AK, ID, UT and we throw in MT & WY. I respectfully must decline your offer. It's sad really – I only have enough short films to make two – maybe three – shows. I can only assume that NW filmmakers are unwilling to promote themselves or are to ashamed of their work to have it displayed on public television. I don't know which and I'm beginning not to care.

Andre Hunt

Uhoh.."stealth movies" I wonder where you got that line from...

Doug Nelson

Hi Andre, it’s nice to see you in here on Stage 32 – you have a lot to bring to the table. For those of you who don’t know Andre; I met him a couple of years back when I discovered his short Bum Rap film somewhere – I don’t recall where. I contacted him and suggested he enter it in the Eugene International Film Festival, he appeared a little reluctant at first but finally entered. He said that he just wanted to make a little “stealth movie.” His little “stealth movie” won first place in its category at EIFS. I urge you all to go find it – YouTube (I think). Andre – plagiarism is one of my stronger suits – but I only steal the best from the best.

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