When you’ve got a finished script, the next thing on your to do list will be getting a film producer attached.
Researching film producers and cold emailing for weeks on end is a pretty miserable process though, and it’s not the most effective way to get noticed by film producers.
Here are the 2 ways to stand out to film producers (without ever sending your IMDb link).
Think like a film producer
The easiest way to get a producer’s attention is to think like they do.
Ideas are the core of everything filmmakers do, but they’re not the only element film producers have to focus on.
They focus on budgets, sales, revenue projections and audiences. All of which sounds kind of dreary and difficult, right?
You only need to touch on those elements lightly, much more lightly than producers do.
When you’re writing scripts, keep the rough estimated budget in mind. Keep cast and locations minimal where you can, and pick a genre that’s relatively low cost to make. Drama, for instance, is pretty low cost to make. Period or sci-fi, though, will require a much higher budget.
Dedicate time to developing your audience. These numbers mean a lot to film producers, because they translate to sales at the box office.
But you can keep it simple. Schedule time each week to create content for social media and check in daily on the 2-3 platforms you’re focusing on.
Posting consistently is the key to building a following of engaged fans who are excited to watch your next film.
Not only does this pay off for all of your future projects, it’ll get you attention from production companies, film festivals, investors and film producers alike.
Future-proof your pitches
Standing out to a producer is often a case of proving you’re a professional filmmaker who’s worth watching.
So naturally you need to prove you’re a professional.
Professional filmmakers know that it pays to be an ideas machine, and you can never have too many pitches prepared.
The fastest way to do that (without spending hours slaving over notebooks and waiting for a killer idea to come) is to develop an outline-only slate.
This is essentially a list of project concepts, broken down into the basic details.
Including an outline of the idea with enough detail is also a game-changing way to uplevel your creative productivity. You’re able to develop an idea, then leave it on your slate until you’re ready to sit down and write the script, or hand it over to a writer.
But equally, you’ll have enough details to pitch the idea to anyone and everyone, without even touching FinalDraft.
Here are the basic details I include for projects on my slate:
- Short synopsis
- Estimated budget
- State of development
I also have my slate broken down into low cost, mid cost and high cost.
This is a great system for those spur of the moment pitches, even the casual coffee meetings. When you’re asked, “what are you working on at the moment?” you can give them a couple of projects from the low cost section, with their state of development.
If you’re in a pitch meeting with an experienced film producer, you have options in the mid cost and high cost categories to pitch them.
Having several fully developed ideas to pitch to a film producer presents you as a mature filmmaker who’s taking their career seriously.