Producing : New to Producing by Krista O'Connor

Krista O'Connor

New to Producing

I am a screenwriter that has been pulled in as a producer on one of my features that is in preproduction. The crew really wants to bring my vision to life so they are really listening to my opinion in regards to casting. So far being apart of the casting has been amazing! Filming starts this spring and there is so much for me to learn. What do I need to know to be the best producer I can be?

Erik A. Jacobson

No offense, Krista, but alarm bells are going off. Someone with zero track record and no experience is "pulled in" to produce a feature? That's a bit of a stretch. And the crew is doing the casting instead of the director? Another stretch. Best advice?

1)Surround yourself with highly experienced crew. 2) Bite your tongue and... 3) Listen to THEM, not vice versa.

Doug Nelson

David - is this where bottom feeders hang out?

Gordon Clatworthy

David must have gotten to her. it's too late for us. to be a good producer you need to understand a lot of legalese, get a lot of permissions, and understand the business end of show business. you need to protect yourself and your crew from problems that could arise. you need to hire people to help you out and you need to find accountants, lawyers, and people that will help with financing. as this post sounds like you're in the independent realm, you should be doing a lot of reaching out. don't get scammed and remember you have a lot of people counting on you.

Krista O'Connor

Erik- The Director is very involved with the casting. I used the word crew lightly, I am referring to the director, assistant director, casting director and other producers. At some point every producer starts somewhere, why is it so sketch to be asked to produce a film that you wrote and have a vision for? I might not have experience but the director likes how I think. I'm more than a writer I am a businesswoman too.

Gordon- Thanks for the advice, yes it is in the independent realm.

What am I missing about David????

Vitaly - I don't have all the details on financing yet, I know there are a few things in place and there are still some things we need to work out.

Erik A. Jacobson

Krista ~ Despite your lack of experience, I sincerely hope your film is a success. Yes, writers can be producers, but usually they learn the business side first on a short film with much less money at stake. You say "the director likes how I think".... no surprise since you're the one paying his salary. And you mention there are "other producers". Are these the same people who "asked" you to produce? Are you paying their salaries as well? What successful movies have they produced? Puzzlers: You "don't know all the details on financing"? Why not? That's the producer's job. And if financing isn't nailed down, why has casting started?

Sorry for all the questions, but for experienced filmmakers like Doug, Vitaly, Dan M and others on this site to respond to your request for advice, a clearer picture is necessary.

Dan MaxXx

I'm gonna be Mr. Positive and say, go for it. It's only a movie and money, but don't make the movie into a 30-year home mortgage. Have fun, learn, make mistakes, then do it again, make another movie. we don't know your finances and lifestyle and it's none of our business how much u want to spend/produce. Some folks think $50K, $100K, $5mil is not much.

My buddy paid $220K for a USC film education. he didn't blink paying the tutition bill. he drives part time Uber and he's a happy trojan alumni.

Good Luck! Shoot behind the scenes footage . Like to see your progress! Spring comes fast. making a movie is stamina test.

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