I know what you’re thinking.
“OMG Curt… How do you put out such OUTSTANDING content, on a weekly basis — for FREE? I love you. And you’re hot.”
I know. I know.
But I’m an indie filmmaker too, so believe me, I know the struggles of film budgeting.
No more hoarding of secrets. F*** that.
- CHAPTER 1: Getting Financing / Film Funding In The First Place
- CHAPTER 2: Getting Start With Film Budgeting
- CHAPTER 3: Film Budget Templates (You Can Use)
- CHAPTER 4: Common Film Budget Mistakes (You NEED To Avoid)
- BONUS CHAPTER: Dealing With Bigger Budgets (over $500k)
CHAPTER 1: Getting Financing / Film Funding In The First Place
Yes, you wanna know how to put together a proper film budget; for yourself, for investors, for grant agencies…
But what if you don’t have any money to budget with in the first place?
Here are some other resources you can look to get your bearings:
–12 Ways to Finance Your Canadian Independent Film | Julie Matlin
–Funding Fundamentals: 5 Ways to Raise Money for Your Film | Alexander Huls
–The 7 Dirty Secrets of Film Financing | Bianca Goodloe
–How To Finance Your Independent Film | Stephanie Palmer
–10 Routes To Finance Your Film | Elliot Grove
–Development: 6 Ways to Finance Your Film | Stacey Davis
–Beginner’s Guide to Independent Film Financing | Michael Koehler*
–Full List of Grants for the Canada / USA / UK | indiefilmTO
CHAPTER 2: Getting Start With Film Budgeting
What are the principles behind having a good budget?
What do you include / not include? What if you’re working for free? How do you count that towards the budget?
This chapter is all about those film budget fundamentals.
–10 Tips for Successfully Producing a Micro-Budget Film | Jennifer Westin
–A Better Budget: The Beginners Guide to Planning a Indie Budget | Arthur Vince
–12 Indispensable Tips for Budgeting Your Indie Feature | Sophia Harvey
–How To Make A Budget | Bri Castellini
–Small Budget? Producer Jason Blum’s 5 Rules for Lean Filmmaking | Nicolai Yakimchuck
–Film Budget Planning: How to Effectively Budget a Script Breakdown | Michael Epstein
–How to Approach a Film Budget | Rick Smith and Kim Miller
–Budget Building, Pay Calculations, Overtime, Fringes, and Incentives / Rebates | Stephen Marinaccio
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CHAPTER 3: Film Budget Templates (You Can Use)
The most frustrating part of film budgets (asides from getting the money) is how you organize everything.
What does a budget actually look like in terms of the paperwork and legal side of things?
Now that you have some knowhow on how to use your funds wisely, you now need some way to professionally document your spending budget as well.
These links will help you out (most are free):
–Free Film Budget Template | John Ott
–Film Budget | Airtable
–163 Free Templates for Filmmakers – Part 1: Pre-Production | Jasmin Mühlhölzer
–How to Make the Perfect Budget in Google Sheets | BetterCloud
–Film Budget Template – Easy Tool for Film Budgeting | Anna Kupelian
CHAPTER 4: Common Film Budget Mistakes (You NEED To Avoid)
For those who are having problems with the budgeting the film with the above methods, don’t worry it happens to everyone.
Here are some articles pointing out some of the more common problems you’ll come across and how to deal with it:
–Four Common Budgeting Mistakes for Your Documentary | Anthony Q Artis
–Micro-Budget Filmmaking: Are You Making These 5 Mistakes? | Zeke, New York Film Academy
–8 Crucial Mistakes to Avoid on Your First Feature Film | Robert Heske*
–6 Common Mistakes of the Low-Budget Filmmaker | Steven Gladstone
–10 Most Expensive Mistakes Filmmakers Make | Elliot Grove
–How to Avoid the Top 5 Budgeting Mistakes from Slated’s Colin Brown | Oakley Anderson-Moore
–6 Mistakes Every Short Film Should Avoid Making | Rob Nightingale
BONUS CHAPTER: Dealing With Bigger Budgets (over $500k)
It’s a good idea to see what budgets look like in the high 6-figure to 7 figure range.
Part of being a master and not stressing is knowing the road ahead (something I touch on in my Cycle Of Problems video).
This chapter is all about insights on the in’s and out’s of bigger budget movies for when you get to the higher level:
–Why do movies cost so much to make? | Dave Roos
–Budget Breakdowns: What a Typical Movie and TV Pilot Really Cost to Make Now (and Why) | Austin Siegemund-Broka, Paul Bond
–20 low budget movies that became massive blockbusters | Joshua Nealey
–Why Do All Hollywood Movies Lose Money? | Alex Mayyasi
–How are Hollywood blockbusters financed? | Jessika Toothman
No more hoarding of secrets. F*** that.
I would love to hear all about the insights you got from this guide. Write your comments below so others can glean from your success.
Here’s to taking MASSIVE action,
Director / Writer / Producer
You know how Eminem is the Rap God? Well up North there in Canada, Curt's referred to as Toronto's "Film God." Studying mathematics and physics, his switch to filmmaking has given him a unique eye where he sees how things are traditionally done in the industry and goes "Um.. WTF." With a focus on results, and not just "festivals", Curt has taken cues from the startup world as well as deep psychology to help other independent filmmakers get connected, get funded, and make money with their films.