Film Closings was featured this week in a Chicago Tribune article as well as in Screen juxtaposing what others in the state were saying and rallying for when it came to the IL film incentive. This post gives a broader understanding to our view on the credit climate overall. As well as a Pop Quiz.
The U.S. House overwhelmingly passed its first significant crowdfunding legislation, allowing entrepreneurs to crowdsource up to $2 million per year.
Robert Redford makes a valid point that if people don't feel they can have some modicum of constitutional protection by whistle-blowing or speaking candidly with documentary filmmakers, then our society will lose one of its greatest civil protectorates: passionate, self-righteous, bullheaded filmmakers.
Recently, I was interviewed by Kingsley Marshall, contributor to Big Screen, Film International, Little White Lies, and Shook, for a story on film finance. Do you find this Q&A interesting? What additional information would you like to know about? Here is the Q&A from this article not yet out: Kingsley Marshall: How hard is it to find movie financing in 2010? JEFF STEELE: It's very, very tough out there for single-picture, indie films. There are about six entertainment banks left that are actively lending, down from 12 in 2008, and only a handful of gap funds, down from a zillion in 2008. Wall Street equity, like hedge funds, has pretty much abandoned the single-picture finance business as well, but is still present in slate financing structures. And yet, films are still getting made. Kingsley Marshall: How much is the credit crunch to blame? JEFF STEELE: The credit crunch definitely played a key part in the production freeze in 2009, where the streets of Cannes and Toronto were paved with dead deals. 2010's glut has to do more with (1) the plethora of bad film deals that were made during the go-go years of 2005-2008 that have barely recouped this budgets, (2) high net worth individuals not having the disposable income they once had (or thought they had), and (3) the lack of U.S. distributors (and P&A) available to the indie market. The credit crunch is definitely having a direct impact on the ability of foreign buyers and distributors to finance pre-sales and pre-sales deposits, which are critical elements in indie film financing.