Create Stunning Creative Pitch Decks to Woo Hollywood Execs | Marshall Rimmer | Skillshare

Create Stunning Creative Pitch Decks to Woo Hollywood Execs

Marshall Rimmer, Filmmaker

Create Stunning Creative Pitch Decks to Woo Hollywood Execs

Marshall Rimmer, Filmmaker

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17 Lessons (1h 29m)
    • 1. Pitch Deck Trailer

      0:47
    • 2. Pitch Deck Dimensions

      5:52
    • 3. Start with an Image

      8:26
    • 4. Background Imagery

      2:40
    • 5. Font Selection

      3:29
    • 6. Utilize Quotes

      1:04
    • 7. Showcase your Personality

      2:43
    • 8. Make Sure Your Characters are Likeable

      0:58
    • 9. Adobe Color

      1:29
    • 10. Basic Photoshop Overview

      7:28
    • 11. Building the Page

      6:01
    • 12. Alter the Photos to Fit the Tone

      4:28
    • 13. How to Save Slides as a single PDF

      4:08
    • 14. The Creative Part of the Pitch

      14:57
    • 15. The Business Part of the Pitch

      13:19
    • 16. Intangibles

      8:15
    • 17. Leave Behinds

      2:30
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About This Class

So you've written the screenplay that will revolutionize Hollywood as we know it. The only problem is that your independent movie is an uphill battle. You have no idea how the industry works and you're going to have to win over people who do.

Knowing how to create a visually stunning pitch deck is an essential skill that every writer needs to know. But executive producers speak in what seems to be a different language than creatives. How do you translate genius creative stories into business-oriented copy for wealthy investors who only communicate in PowerPoint?

By taking this class, of course.

We'll walk you through all the essential skills you need to learn to deliver an impactful pitch presentation.

  • How to transform creative content into business opportunities for your potential indie producers

  • How to design a beautiful pitch deck

  • How to present in the most common settings

  • How to leave a lasting impression

Whether you've written a feature film screenplay, teleplay, or you're wanting to adapt a novel, this class will teach you all the essential methods to market yourself and your project in a way that speaks powerfully to investors.

Meet Your Teacher

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Marshall Rimmer

Filmmaker

Teacher

Marshall Rimmer is a video production professional who has had his work featured on CNN, WIRED, G4TV, and IGN. Additionally, his short films have played at  Academy Award qualifying festivals including South by Southwest, Palm Springs, Austin Film Festival, Los Angeles Film Festival, and Chicago International Children's.

Sample Projects:

Cinematography Sample

Angry Birds Movie Trailer

Facebook vs. Google+ Sketch

See full profile

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Transcripts

1. Pitch Deck Trailer: So you've just spent most of your time writing the best screenplay of your life. Unfortunately, your journey is far from over, unless you've got a cool ten mill sitting in the bank, chances are you're gonna have to raise some money to your pet project made. But you can exactly sit in investor down and read a whole to ever screenplay. That's where a pitch deck comes in. A pitch deck is a great visual medium that distills your tone, characters, and story into an easily digestible format. And I'm gonna show you how to build one from the ground up. This class not only covers the creative basics, but it also dives deep into the psychology of investors showing you exactly what parts of your project need to highlight, secure those fonts. Because as a creative, there's nothing more satisfying and spending months of your life on a character and then one day seeing that character come to life, that is Porter, best camera man and tau, ever since the art school burned down. And this is all thanks to the power of the Pitch Deck. 2. Pitch Deck Dimensions: Alright, let's go ahead and create our pitch deck here. Now, I'm going to go ahead and do this in Adobe Photoshop. You're welcome to use any software you like. We're only talking about principles and theories here. And so anything you learn here can be applied to Illustrator or PowerPoint or whatever software you're going to use to create this pitch deck. For me. I have always done in Photoshop, so it's just a little more familiar. So in Photoshop we're gonna go ahead and click on Create New. And from here, we are prompted with the dimensions and resolution that we want our deck to be. Now if we're accustomed to video, it might be tempting to go ahead and do this in 1920 by 1080. But one thing to note is that most likely this pitch deck is going to be printed out on paper. And so because of that, I always like to do a standard 8.5 by 11, at least to start. Even if I'm changing the dimensions within the project. I always like to start with the 8.5 by 11. I put it on landscape orientation versus portrait. And then from there we'll go ahead and click Create. So this is at least a good base to start off from when it comes to dimensions, one thing to take into consideration is if you know what setting you are going to be presenting this pitch deck in, that has a lot to do with your dimensions. If you're having an intimate one-on-one meeting or two on one meeting with an investor, there's a pretty good chance that you're going to hand them a paper copy for them to be looking at. However, if you are meeting with a group of people accompany in a boardroom, there's a better chance that you're going to be looking at this through a projector. And so if you are looking at it in a projector, I always say that you have a little bit more leeway on what you want these dimensions to be. So again, 8.5 by 11, you can't go wrong with, but if you know that you're going to be looking at it on a projector or if you have no issues with cutting out the dimensions later after you print a perfectly fine ratio to have your pitch deck at is 16 by nine, which is standard in television. So to achieve that, we can go up here to canvas size. And on canvas size we can now set our new dimensions. So we're at 8.5 by 11 inches. And I like to always set this to pixels. So now we can see the pixels. And now we're gonna do just a tiny bit of quick math. We're going to keep our width the same because 16 by nine, we're just shortening the height some. So we take out a quick calculator. We do 3300 divided by 16 times nine, and now we have 81856 pixels on the height. We click OK, we hit proceed. Now we can see we have a nice standard 16 by nine dimension for our pitch deck. Now, if we know that we are filming this in a more ultra cinematic 23 five ratio, something that is a little bit more akin to anamorphic film back in the day. We can do that as well. So I'm going to hit undo and now I'm gonna go back to canvas size, gonna go two pixels. Same thing, we wanna keep our width the same. We're only adjusting the height here. And so the 2.35 ratio is just going to be 3300 divided by 2.35. And we have 1404 for the height. And now you can see we have the ultra anamorphic widescreen there for our presentation. That's saying the dimensions is something that you definitely want to do from the beginning. It is something you can't change at the end. But when you do it from the beginning, you can now know where to place all your graphics, your texts, and align everything so it's nice and visual. Whereas if you do it at the end, you're going to end up cropping things and it's gonna take a lot of time moving everything around. So definitely set your dimensions here at the beginning. And if you wanna give yourself a little bit of leeway, you're not entirely sure what dimensions you want to pick yet. There is a work around that I don't really recommend, but I'm sure some instances do call for this. We have our background right here that we can just go ahead and call 8.5 by 11, or I guess technically it would be 11 by 8.5. So we have our 11 by 8.5. Let's go ahead and duplicate that and then call this 116 by nine. And now what we can do is we can come up here to our little select tool to draw the box. And instead of having it normal on the style, we can set the style to fixed ratio, and then from there we can set it to 16 on our width, nine on our height. And now when we draw this, it will stay at a fixed ratio the whole time. So we can draw all the way across the width, drag it down till it's completely Center. And then from there, we can go ahead and create a Layer Mask. It does all the work for us. And as you can see, this is 16 by nine. Just to see it a little better visually, we can create a new layer, put it on the bottom, and make it completely black. So now we have our little letterbox effect, and it's perfectly 16 by nine, and we're staying in the 11 by 8.5. But now we have both options. So if we wanted to do the same for the 2.35, we anamorphic, We can do that as well. So if you do find yourself in a situation where you do need a little bit of versatility on the dimensions, you can do this process as well, but those are pretty much standard dimensions that you'll see on pitch decks. So the 8.5 by 11 is just the size of a piece of paper. And then we have 16 by nine for television or film, and then 2.35 for an ultra anamorphic. And you can change it honestly to whatever you want. It could be a square, it could be four by three, whatever your project calls for. But this is step one in the process. 3. Start with an Image: So let's dive into the creative for this pitch deck. And one thing that I always recommend doing is starting off with an image, whether that is original artwork or an important location in the story, or just a screen grab from a comparable movie to convey the tone. To me, this is more important when pitching dramas because the tone of dramas is a little bit more nuanced than it is for comedies. So just a few examples for you guys real quick. This is the pitch deck I did for a kind of Western war movie a few years back. And as you can see, I went with the 2.35 ratio here, since this is a more kind of epic film look. And I took this still from No country for old men. And then I kind of manipulated the colors a little bit to get them where I wanted. And what was nice about this image is that it had a lot of negative space here in the sky. So I could put my title here. So this image kind of, you see this image and you kind of get a feel for what this movie is going to be. Now, when I say start with an image, these images are multipurpose for one. We can use them as a title page like this. But also two, we can blur out certain sections and have them as a background on other text. So when you click through the text, you see all this text is over. This is very blurred out background that came from that original image. So another example I have here for this aberration short film. Now for this one I, this short film takes place mostly in a single location. So in, in, in a lab similar to this. So I went online and I just sourced in this image. I searched maybe engineering lab or a physics lab, or maybe cluttered physics lab. And then I found an image that I liked. And then as you can see, made a very green, I tented it like a late nineties grunge kind of matrix Fight Club kind of vibe to it. So that was to help convey the tone. And I use that on the title page, kind of in the back. I had some text here. But then also every time that we see text, this is just a very blurred out version of what that image was. And it's nice. It's, it's, it's better than a solid color. It's a little more, more interesting. And it keeps the colors that keeps the tone of the piece all consistent. Now, like I was saying for a comedy, it's not quite as necessary to start with an image. This pitch I did for this trust fund Kids series is just a simple gradient from like a lighter blue, sky blue. And so since this was a very simple color, the blue and the orange, you works really well graphically. And so it conveys a more bright, comedic, upbeat tone. So it's good to start with an image. And for a lot of these pitches, you're going to be drawing comps, screen grabs from other movies. But if you have your own original artwork, that is really nice as well. It shows that you've put a lot of time and effort into the project already, and investors love seeing that. So here is a pitch for a film called The Invisible raptor. And we've already gotten a poster made with this font and, and a whole graphic treatment on it as well. And so we basically just took the title from the poster with the imagery of these guys as well. And we put it on top of a treasure map in a jungle. And then we had some little sparkles around it as well. And so this image right here, starting with this image, is really powerful because it is original artwork. It shows that we've already put time and effort into this and we will continue doing that in the future. And it just looks really professional. And as you can see, kind of our template for all of these was this map in the jungle with the sparkles throughout. We took the log line. We had this font from Jurassic Park essentially. And we just had a lot of fun with it. So this is a silly fun comedy. And starting with this image of a treasure map in a jungle, were already hit with adventure where he hit with Indiana Jones and an imagery of that type of thing. So if we were making our own pitch deck for a film, Let's say that we are creating a NOR, let's say we're, we're making a noir film. We can go to Google here and search war movie. And chances are if we're the ones making the norm movie, we have a few comps in mind that we really like that we already are aware of. And so you can either search for those directly or you can type in more movie on Google and see what comes up. Now one thing to note also about grabbing screen captures from old movies is that old movies didn't really start color grading until maybe the early to mid nineties with O Brother, Where Art thou I think was one of the first examples of a really heavy colour grade on a movie. And then ever since then movies have a, a very distinct look to them. So let's go ahead and reference the dark night. Maybe we're making a film that is similar in tone to Christopher Nolan, dark night movie. So we can search Dark Knight screen cap. And now we're seeing some screen caps from The Dark Knight. And honestly, I like this one right here a lot. It's really moody, gives out a lot of colors, but it's also high contrast. It really sets a tone. So if we were making a similar movie that was dark and dramatic, brooding, I think this would be a good reference for So from here, we can save this image and we can put it into Photoshop here. Now I'm going to go ahead and kind of extended out. So it's covering all 8.5 by 11. And like we were saying earlier, these screen grabs work really well if there's negative space to have them on a title or for just kind of maybe taking a section from them. So what if we even maximize this out? So we saw no, Christian Bale was just maybe this window here. And then maybe we can add even more of a blur to it. So something like that. Again, we're just going for a feel. We don't really need to be aware of what any of these images actually are. Maybe from here, we'll add the contrast. You know, it is a dark brooding kinda thing and we're getting a little less of the contrast now. But we could do something like this. And again, we're just trying to get a background for a lot of our images here. So again, we would use a background like this for certain text throughout the pitch deck. And it also kind of just sets the mood. So I know we started off talking about a war movie, but we kind of ended up in a place for something a little bit more eloquent, elegant, and artsy. We could even add a slight manual gradient here, yellow, that looks pretty nice. So the main idea of starting with its image is one of two things. One, if there was nice negative space in the image, we could have had our title and things and focus similar to that Western one that I showed you. And then this route, we've just blurred it, maybe just text. We've just made the background a bit of texture. It's little bit more interesting than it would be if it was just a solid color. So that's starting with an image. 4. Background Imagery: Let's talk about our background for a second. And this is kind of a continuation off the idea of starting with an image. So if we did land with this background here, this nice blue here. If we land up with something like this that's so soft, out-of-focus and not very contrasty. This would allow us to keep this background continuous throughout the whole pitch deck. However, if we used an image with some negative space to put a title in, we would have to alter our backgrounds for the other slides. So let's say for instance that we were using this picture of Deadpool as our title page. So if we were doing some sort of superhero short film that was dramatic, kras and funny. It's a Commie, so we'll give the texts kind of a silly font. So this is our tidal, another superhero movie. We see Deadpool and we have the background like this. So this was our title page. We couldn't use this for our subsequent pages because Deadpool is in-focus and he takes up a good amount of the frame here. So what we would do to create our background for the rest of the slides is we would pick a place in this image to zoom in on and throw out a focus. But it kind of subconsciously still reminds us of our title page. So let's do that real quick. We'll duplicate the layer and we'll zoom way in. And we want some interesting texture, but we don't want it to be distracting from here because it's so zoomed in and pixelated will throw blur on it. It's just a hair dark, so we're gonna brighten it up. And something like this will be great. So it's out of focus. It doesn't distract, it reminds us of our title page and it keeps the colors, the look, tone, and feel. And so now we can put quotes, we can put certain things over this and it'll read really nicely. And again, just showing you guys a few examples of this that I've done in the past. Aberration pitch, I took this location, zoomed in probably to this floor here. And then now I can put text over this bright background here. And it looks really nice, much more interesting than just a solid color. And same thing with here from this image. I zoomed into the sky up here and had that for a background. So again, it, it conveys the colors and keeps the colors, the tone there. And it just ties it all together nicely. And it's more interesting than just a solid color or gradient. 5. Font Selection: So there are volumes and volumes of books that have been written on typography. Fonts are incredibly complex and convey so many different feelings that if you've never thought about what goes into a font, it's really a rich, deep subject. And so you have a font like this, kinda silly, fun superhero font. And it doesn't work super well with this background. But we could do something like this and make a nice elegant art movie. So there's so much that goes into the font. And this class isn't really going to dive super deep into that. But what I do want to convey is that picking the right font is very important and you should really only use about two fonts on your pitch decks. So typically, you'll have one font for the title, and then the body of the text will have a different font. And typically that font is going to be a little bit more easy to read than the big title font. The big title font can be fun and fancy, but the smaller font needs to be a little bit more standard. This font should align with the tone of your project. And if you don't know a ton about typography, It is a good idea to think of those comparable movies and look at the movie posters. You know, what does the movie poster for? No country for old men look like? I can look at assassination of Jesse James. What does that movie poster look like? 310 to Yuma. So I could take into consideration modern day westerns and see what they look and feel like. But again, having two fonts is really all you need if you do anything more than that, it's going to feel a little bit frantic. So you have your title font and then your paragraph font. You can go to Google and search western movie poster. And now you're hit with all this imagery, all these different types of fonts. That strangely enough, look a little bit like what I had done. So to find a font. The site that I love and have loved for years is the font.com. And most all of these fonts are free for personal use. And because this pitch deck, everything we're using is basically reference material for the investor. This is all fair game. We're not selling these pitch decks, are not producing these pitch decks to be sold. We're just using them as means to get money. And so what's amazing about the font. You can search. Let's go ahead and search Western. And then from there, it even allows you to type in your own texts. So my movie here was called Lone Star nation. So from there, I can actually see how it will have the letters, and that's really nice. So I can scroll through these for days. This is a fun phone. I can scroll through these for days until I find something I like. There's 30 Western fonts. So this is an incredible sight. If you don't know about it, I definitely recommend it to font.com. And again, most all of these are free for personal use. So don't neglect your fonts. Don't pick the first one. You think of. Definitely spend a little bit of time on this. 6. Utilize Quotes: So one tool that definitely helps convey the tone of the piece is by using quotes. So the way that your pitch deck will be structured, you'll basically have a broken down where you're showing off certain things about your movie, the look and tone, the themes, the characters, plot, everything like that. And a fun way to go ahead and break up all of these sections is by using quotes. So this just helps break up the rhythm of the presentation a little bit. You're talking about characters for five or ten minutes. You're hit with a quote and then you ease into a different section. We're talking about the theme for a little while. We have a quote that enforces our theme. And then we slowly move on to the world of the piece. So quotes aren't the crux of your presentation here, but they definitely add a little bit of flavor, a little bit of spice, and keep your investor engaged. It also helps add a slight layer of refinement and intelligence to your presentation. 7. Showcase your Personality: One thing that's very important is that you want to convey the movies personality through the presentation. If it's a comedy, you wanna make sure you have some jokes, you have some levity in there. If it's a drama, you want to have some moments of suspense. Maybe you want the presentation to be straight forward in a way that it's very clear and understandable, but you don't want to have it so cookie cutter that the investors get bored. So in my aberration short film pitch here, this is the look that I went with, its grungy green look from the late nineties, I guess mid to late nineties. And in this look, this is not, especially with this text as well. This does not convey comedy in the way that I quite wanted to. I wanted this piece to be a little bit more of a blend between comedy and drama. Like the Cohen Brothers or like Edgar Wright. And since I wasn't doing this through the visuals, I wanted to make sure that the presentation was fun and light. So I did some things like this. I gave the synopsis. And then it ends in an unexpected aha moments. So it ends on a cliffhanger. And then I just had a little bit of fun with it. Twist, what is this, the nineties? Yes. And I showed every movie that was currently coming out or every pop culture, everything that currently was going on that was a very nineties. So just having a little bit of fun with the presentation, not making it so straightforward and boring. I was just kind of giving a feel that, you know, movies haven't been super interesting since the nineties. You look at every frame of this slide and you're like, wow, these were fun, interesting movies that were presented in interesting manners, interesting fashions. And then we had ten years of fantasy, and then ten years of superheroes. When was the last time you had a movie surprise you? And then I gave him this twist by M Night Shamil on if life were predictable, it would cease to be life and be without flavor. But then weight that quote wasn't from M night, it was from Eleanor Roosevelt. A twist. So just being silly, being fun, giving an impression on the investors, letting them know a little bit about who you are through the presentation here. Again, you don't want it to be stale and boring, especially if these are investors who do this very often. They have seen hundreds of these pitches and you have to stand out, you have to do something different. So show them who you are by your presentation. Show them your personality. 8. Make Sure Your Characters are Likeable: You could have spent the past six months of your life writing the best screenplay you've ever written. It can have these twists and turns to get tug at all the heartstrings, they could do everything right? But if the audience doesn't care about your characters, none of it matters. We live in a time of infinite entertainment possibilities. And if you don't hook the audience within the first 10 or 15 minutes, they're just going to go about their day. So today we're just going to talk about the character introduction, quick interaction, that's a microcosm for your entire characters essence. We'll go over many different proven techniques that professional writers use to create instant empathy between an audience and their characters will cover humor, intrigue, resiliency, and a dozen other character traits that establish immediate character likability. And then from there we're going to look at a case study of Martin fly. In fact, the future. We're really going to dissect how the filmmakers used these techniques to make us fall in love with Marty. And just a few quick minutes. So that's what I want to dive into today and pick apart. So let's jump into it. 9. Adobe Color: Real quick, I want to show you guys the holy grail of color theory. And this is Adobe's color, Adobe color, color dot adobe.com. It's an incredibly powerful tool for any kind of color and graphic design. Where basically you start with a base color and you can either type in the hex value that you've gotten from Photoshop or you can spin this guy around until you find the color that you want. And then from there it gives you all of these color relationships. So it starts off with analogous. There's also monochromatic triad, complimentary, split, complementary, Double Split, Complementary, square, compound and shades. And this is basically a great way for you to develop the color scheme on your slides. So split complementary here, I could have blue text on a lot of yellow. I could have yellow on a lot of blue. And I could use these exact hex values in Photoshop to make it nice and perfect. And these are good when I'm thinking of the color for the stroke that outlines photos and things like that. So I definitely encourage you to go to color dot adobe.com. If you don't know about it, basically is how to cheat with color theory. I mean, this gives you all the answers and all the relationships right here. You don't have to do any work. It's, it's a great website. 10. Basic Photoshop Overview: For anyone who's very new to Photoshop, I'm just going to give a very quick rundown of all the tools that we'll be using here. Photoshop is incredibly rich software and we're not even going to scratch the surface where we're just going over all the tools that you'll need to know how to use to build a pitch deck. And so let's just go over on the toolbars. Toolbar on the left here. So this arrow up here on the top left is just how you click something and drag it around. Now, in order for you to do that properly, you have to make sure that the layer is highlighted. But also if there are other layers on top of it that you could be dragging as well. You want to disable those. So you disable those layers. You make sure you're highlighted your layer and then you can click on your asset there and move it where you want it to be. Next, we have this little lasso guy. And this one allows you to select just a certain section of your image. Now if you want to, it defaults to normal here, but you can also do a fixed ratio or fixed size as well. A fixed ratio is pretty useful. I rarely use the fixed size and to deselect the area that we've selected, you just click anywhere and it should de-select it. Now this eyedropper tool here allows you to grab the exact color from the pixel that you're selecting. And that's very helpful. This is the eraser tool right here. So if we wanted to erase a certain part of an image, we could do that. Now, the eraser does not work on smart objects, so you have to rasterize them. And to do that, you just make sure you have the image that you want highlighted. And you can go to just search and then start typing in rasterize. And then it would be rasterized smart object. Now because stands right now is not a smart objects, so I am able to erase certain parts of him. Now this gradient here, one thing that's important to note is that click on the gradient. The paint bucket tool is also the exact same tile. So people starting off to Photoshop, that's a little frustrating. Just know that the gradient tool and the paint bucket are on the same tile here. So if you decide if you're making a new layer, will get into how to do that in a second. And you wanted to just make it normal square were building like a base and the background. Let's go ahead and have that normal. From there. You can take the paint bucket and then fill it in with whatever color you want. Now you also have the Text tool, and this is very important. There's two ways to do the text tool if you are not, if you don't care about any of this book alignment to make the right side and the left side both a line at the same space. You can just click with the text tool. It'll throw in some gibberish for you to see how it goes. And then you can just start typing hello. So that's one way to do it. To be honest. The type tool has more functionality. If you draw a box in the space where you want the text to be. And now I would be able to do the book alignment. There's a few other functions as well that are only accessible through this drawing, the box here. So that's, that's usually the better way to go is draw the box. The colors right here, Photoshop saves two different colors for you. So if you click on the color, you can adjust to how you want and then swap them. And then you can adjust the secondary color as well. So you can have two colors at your disposal right there. So that's pretty much everything that we use on the toolbar here on the left. Again, very brief overview. We're just doing something that looks kinda like this. Now on the right, bottom right here, we're all your layers are. There's a few different things that we may use. The, this guy right here. This is how to create a new layer. Just creates a blank new layer. That's very important. This folder picture is how to create a new group. So then you can arrange and different layers, like I have the color correction layers here, I can put them in a color group. This is an Adjustment Layer. So that's very important if you're working non-destructively, which if you do Photoshop, you should be working non-destructively anytime you can. And basically you can adjust your colors, your contrast, everything like that on the actual image itself. But you are not adjusting the image itself because it's an adjustment layer. And then wherever you place the Adjustment Layer, and let's just say we're going to do vibrance. And we're just going to desaturate everything wherever you place the adjustment layer, it affects everything below it. So if I was in a situation where I just wanted to effect maybe certain parts of the image but not others. Let's turn off this color. So if I was affecting just certain parts of the image, but not the other Ike, I could put the vibrance. You know, wherever I put it, it depends. It only affects the things below it. And then the mask here. The mask is very important when selecting parts of an image. What we can do, I'll go ahead and just delete this mass for now if I want because stands, if I just want a certain part of him, what I can do is I can go to the lasso here and then I can select what part of the image I think is good. And then from there when I click on the mask, it automatically mass it off for me. And that's kinda nice. So knowing how all these guys works are pretty important. And then there's the trashcan as well. And so once we know these guys, another thing here, the opacity is a tool that I use from time to time. You can set the opacity of a layer and that's very helpful. And then the very last thing that I think is definitely worth learning. When you double-click on a layer, you can adjust the Layer Style. And this is really for like the stroke around a, an image. And then also if I, if I'm working on the base here, if I'm just working on this base rectangle, I could maybe do a color overlay. And so it would fill up the whole base color so I can adjust the color here. So that's one way to just the color. You can also do the paint, the paint bucket and then fill it in. This layer style is between the two. Kind of a better one to learn. If you do get serious into Photoshop later, this is definitely the better space you want that to be in. So you can do a color overlay, you can do a gradient overlay. You can do some close strokes, things like that. And so that's why you'll notice on this Constanza layer here, I do have a stroke on it. And I can turn that on and off here. And you'll notice that when I did go to erase part of the image, that stroke, that outline still stays on the image here around where I erased. So that's very basic overview and Photoshop, but those are all the tools that we'll be using here. So just some of this toolbar on the left. No, how to know these guys in the bottom right? And then double-click just the Layer Styles here. So very quick, crash course in Photoshop, but that's all I use. 11. Building the Page: So let's go over real quick, just kind of building a typical page. So this could be for the characters are synopsis or logline or anything like that. So one thing that's very important is anytime you have text on a background, the less amount of contrast on that background, the easier it is to read your text. So if there were, if this was very bright in some sections and very dark and other sections, I might have to adjust this so that you can actually read the text on here. This background is probably okay. But I'm gonna go ahead and kind of add a solid background there just to make it nice and easy for you guys. So by putting a solid color background will be able to read our texts regardless of what it says. And it's always nice to add a little stroke to the outline as well. From there, we'll have our title. Keep in mind that this is going to be printed out the size of a piece of paper. So font that might look a little small is probably OK. For readable font, you don't ever really want to go below 14 or 16 on the text. I like to keep things at 18, so something like this. So we have our title font here for synopsis. And then we have the body of our synopsis here in a more readable font that's a little smaller. So again, if we did not have the background here, this would be a little bit difficult to read, but honestly, this background is pretty good for these purposes. So we can do this and we can, even if we want, we can make this a little bit opaque. That might be interesting. Maybe it is, maybe it's not. It does make it easier to read. So that's basically it. You have your base on top of your background. And then within your base, you have your title, your body, and then you could have photos as well. So let's dive into some examples with some photos. So we have this pitch here for Disney, and we have our images that again, we've added the nice little stroke to that matches the color of the font. And we also have our alignment. We have the book alignment. So the rights and left's Center as well. Here we didn't need a background because the bright yellow on the dark blue works really well. So we just had the text on the background and not the base. Just to show you guys how to do the book alignment really quickly. I typically for something short like a synopsis or logline, I do like to do the center alignment, which you can find on either paragraph or character. Different programs haven't in different places. Paragraph. And the book alignment has to be created. When you create your text. If you draw a box, that's one way to create your text and that's the only way to do the book alignment. So let me just copy all this, delete it, and then paste it here. And now I can do my book alignment, but as you see, oops, let's make sure it's all highlighted and all book alignment. As you can see the last line on most every time you do a book alignment is going to have weird gaps like this. So when I do the book alignment, I always go to this last line. Hit enter. Make sure it's all by itself. And then the last line left, align their. So as you can see, the top two are nice and aligned on the edges. And then the bottom one is more natural. It doesn't have that massive gap like it had before. So that's how the book align, the synopsis, I always do book alignment on the characters or the plots or episodes are any longer form descriptions. But anything short like this, I'll sometimes do the center align instead. So here's one that follows that same template. We have this base which is a solid dark green that's opaque, as you can see the background here, the title, look and tone. And then we have the description here. It looks like I didn't not book align these, I just left these left aligned. And then I have my images here. And you can make your images uniform and align like this. You can make them kind of sporadic or whatever you want the presentation of those to be. Now one thing on the images to note, I did color grade these images to match them with the look and feel of everything. I don't think Casey Affleck jacket was quite as dark green as this. So I I did some color gradient to make all these look and feel a similar tone. One thing to note also with the presentation is you want a variety. This is a little bit of text with a bunch of pictures, followed by my standard based on background template, followed by a quote here. You just want the visual presentation to be different, enough, consistent, but different. Here's what I did for an animated project. And it looks like I kept this 8.5 by 11 instead of 11 by 8.5. And as you can see, I have my little title here. Pictures, looks like I only used one font for this project. Another thing to note on the presentation of things. Do you want your pictures of characters to be kind of standard with a stroke in a box here, just like 16 by nine, like this is just a standard screen grab or do you want to cut them out and make them interact with the text in a little bit more of an interesting way. And so for this project what we did, we cut out our two heroes. So these stood out and then our ancillary characters, we all had in just the normal boxes there. 12. Alter the Photos to Fit the Tone: Okay. I'm going to show you guys how to adjust the pictures that you're going to be using to fit a certain tone. So let's say I'm, I'm working on a slide here that's about a character. Okay, so I have just a very basic description I've thrown together about Carl. He's a neurotic old man who doesn't like people and complains a lot. And so for Carl, I want to try and choose some pictures that convey who this character is. And for me, this is a George Costanza, larry david, Woody Allen. The old man from up, kind of all combined into one. So I'm gonna go on Google and I'm going to search for all those people. And when you're looking for the person, you want to find a freeze-frame that most matches the description that you're trying to provide. So I don't necessarily want a happy George. I could search angry George. And sometimes when you're looking at images, it's nice to go to Tools. And then size, and then pick either medium or large. So we've brought in all of our comps to our Photoshop file, and now we can scale them down and we'll go ahead and start with one of the cops will start with George because stanza here, and we'll add that stroke. And then we will use our eyedropper. Actually it's set on that color already, but we can use our eyedropper. Maybe not. Yeah, we'll use our eye dropper on this edge to make it the same color. And maybe for this one will decrease the size. Now, just to let you guys know if you do insight on the position it keeps the edges sharp. If you go outside, it will round the edges a little bit. So your choice. From there, we can copy this Layer Style and then paste the Layer Style on the other three layers. Like so. Great. And now we just need to kind of move these around where we want them. And if we want to change what we selected, let's say we want to stanza, we don't want to see as much of a Kramer's head here. So we go to our little outline guy in the top left. We can just lasso. Oops, let's make sure our lasso is set to normal. Just lasso the area that we want. And then we can mask and then it'll automatically cut that out for us. So I think something like this looks pretty fun. Now obviously it would be better if the text was filled in a little bit more like this. But this is kind of nice having the little four quadrants here with the different pictures, I can make it maybe make Larry David a little taller. So from here we have all of our images, but they don't reflect any sort of consistent tone. And we can color correct all of them individually or we can try to do it with adjustment layers. So I'm gonna go ahead and create a folder to drop all of these guys into. And then from there, I'm going to start adjusting. I'm going to go to the color balance. From there. I'm going to maybe make my shadows a little bit more cooler. Make George a little less saturated. Going to do an overall hue saturation. From here, I'm going to grab my warm colors. So I'm going to grab reds and I'm gonna make red's a little bit wider. So everything that's not blue and green, I'm going to desaturate, just see what I see. I'm going to D saturate those. I'm going to go to yellows and make yellows just basically skin tone. And then I'll saturate my yellows, just a hair. Ok, and so now we've adjusted the color on these images and we have essentially brought them into the same movie. So that's really all we're trying to do is we're just trying to align the colors here. So I'll just show you guys a quick before and after. This is after and this is before. So again, just trying to bring them in line with this kind of blue, yellow color scheme that we've created. Yeah, that feels really nice. 13. How to Save Slides as a single PDF: So let's go over how to assemble our pitch deck into a single PDF file. So this is my Photoshop here. I have all my pages nicely organized for this project. So it's all right here. So once I'm completely done with all the graphics, I'm going to export each page individually as a JPEG. And when I do that, I want to label them 010203, et cetera. As you can see here, B and C, These are different iterations of the same page. Fixed some typos or something like that, but you don't necessarily need a page description. You can add that if you want, um, but make sure that it's organized. So when you sort by name, it actually goes in the order it should go in. So and to do that in Photoshop, you just go up to File. You can go to Save As from Save As You want to make sure the format is a JPEG or a PNG, some sort of image files. Jpeg should work fine for these purposes. And then go ahead and name it 01 and hit save. So that's how you export a single-page. So basically go through all your pages to do that until you have something that looks kind of like this. So from here, what we're going to do is we're going to bring these images into preview as one kind of collection. And to do that, we want to highlight all of the JPEGS. Now if we have different iterations, we're only going to highlight the most recent iteration, but we're going to go ahead and take all 12 of these pages into preview. And to do that will highlight by clicking and holding down Apple and clicking again until we've got all of them. Now that we have all of them highlighted, we're going to right-click and do open with Preview. And sometimes it will open this up in multiple windows. And that's usually just kind of a glitch on the computers parts. So we'll close it out and then right-click open with Preview again until we get something that is sequential 01020304. And you can just spot check, make sure all the files are here. And in order, that looks great. Okay, so now we have all of them as a collection in preview. From there we go to File. Don't do export as PDF as you would think, because that's only a single page. Go to File Print or Apple p. From here, we get this page. Now, if we do normal orientation, 8.5 by 11, it has borders on the image. So with our paper size, we can go to manage custom sizes. From here. We can do an 8.5 by 11 with no border and we can name it what we want. Let's just name it full 11 by 8.5. Okay, great. From their awesome look at that, it's taken away all the borders. So now when we print this, it'll be full-page. So now that we've got that, Let's go over here to the bottom left, PDF, save as PDF. So now we can do visible rapture. We hit Save. It processes the pages to double-check. We go to what we just did and look at that. It's a PDF with all the pages there. So that is the easiest way. Even though it's a little complex. That's the easiest way to take all of our jpegs and save them as one single PDF file. That's easier to print down the line. 14. The Creative Part of the Pitch: Okay, so I'm going to walk you guys through exactly what one of these pitch decks look like. And it's important to note that not all of these are going to be the same, even though they do follow a formula. There are certain things that each, each project needs to highlight, right? You might highlight the tone and feel of a dark, brooding trauma more than you would a 30-minute TV sitcom. And so whatever you think the project needs to highlight, definitely focus on those if, if there are certain things that you think it's okay to neglect, that's totally fine to it's not like the investor is going to be sitting there with a list that he's checking off and if you miss one, then he's not going to fund your project. So let's go ahead and start off. The very first page is going to be a title page. So here is one. For the short film, the aberration. You want to set the tone, you want to set the feel. You want it to look slick, look like you've put some time and effort into it. And then from the title page, you go into the synopsis or the logline or a brief overview. Now, a synopsis can cover kinda start to finish the movie. If you think that that is how you can best present the movie. You can also in on a cliffhanger, whatever you think is going to entice someone to continue to want to read it. And now, for synopsis, I wanna show you guys a couple options. So this one, a troubled scientists, loses his wife to a man who turns out to be himself from an alternate universe, a universe in which the wife has unexpectedly died. As a two scientists vying over the confused wife, that top secret lab and local authorities begin to take notice of the strange anomaly, dot-dot-dot. So I've pretty much only given maybe the first, third or first half of the movie, right? The audience won't definitely learn of the tune universes until halfway through the movie. An unexpected aha moment. So giving you a little bit of a taste of it, that there's going to be a twist and that this movie will be presented in a way that's a little less traditional than normal Hollywood movies. Now this is one way to do it. Another way you can do it. So I have this silly comedy, trust fund kids, and it gives the synopsis, but it also gives a very brief, it's Dumb and Dumber meets Scarface. So you read this what, eight word or so Description and you know exactly what this movie is. You're picturing These two guys in the world of Scarface, trust fund kids is an action-adventure buddy comedy about Carl and Oliver to spoiled rich dimens, Bricks Brothers who unexpectedly lose their inheritance. They cashed out what money they have and flee to Central America to avoid debt collectors and continue living like kings. When Oliver becomes involved with a local drug lords wife, the brothers quickly become the target of the most powerful cartel and the region. Now with no money and no exit strategy, they must decide to live within their means or fight the cartel to get their money back. It's Dumb and Dumber. Meet Scarface. So this one is kind of a combination. You have the synopsis. And then this very brief description here, something meets something else. Now, you could have a more traditional logline if you want it, if you wanted to have a two to three sentence. Very concise description. That's fine too. This logline here, the invisible rapture is a committed Creature Feature with absolutely no creature. Thanks. Jurassic Park meets the invisible man. Only the men are visible and the dinosaurs aren't. So starting off with these log lines and these quick synopsis, your investor will know exactly what the project is combined with the visuals that you're presenting. They get a very good idea of the look and feel of the project as well. So that's only we're only two sides and we've only had the title, the brief description. Now from there, with this project, I put in some personality. This is kind of off what you're supposed to be doing. But I wanted the investors to know exactly what they're getting themselves into. So I went into this hole, a twist, what is this? The nineties. And then I referenced that everything at that time coming out was from the nineties. And then kind of a quick glimpse of thinking back to the nineties and thinking about how interesting these movies were. How many twists there were movies, how the storytelling was interesting, and some of them were nonlinear and, and there's just a lot of interesting art influences and Big Hollywood movies in the nineties. And then that kind of faded away in the early two thousands with fantasy and continued with ten years of superhero movies. I was just having a little bit of fun with it. And then from there, I dove into the look in tone of the movie. Now, it's important to note that if you're doing a feature film or a short film versus a television series OR Pilot with the feature film, the plot and the look and tome, The world. Those sort of things are very important. Now when it comes to series ideas, it's all about the characters. You're going to have to have such interesting characters. These characters can carry hours and hours of content. So here is a pitch that I did for an animated series that I have called small-town troubles of Jasper and Tomas, Sweden safe Jasper and has adventures. Best friend Tomas do their best to navigate life as mysterious kids in South Texas, drawing from a rich Bank of their site characters. This show celebrates absurdities of the rural culture and highlights and engrossing get hyperbolas picture of the Lone Star State on its surface. The show is about adventurous back with kids having to make their own fun with the little resources they've got on a deeper level. Each episode battles the choice of doing what's right versus following the crowd. So it's, hey Arnold, set in the world of king of the hill. So you know exactly what this show is. You take all these kids from Brooklyn, the character dynamics, and the personalities, but they're all from rural Texas instead. Now, I had a very quick subject, sample, subject matter, matter sources of adventure. And again with series, this is important. You want, you want an investor to know that the subject matter and sources of adventure can sustain multiple episodes. So again, we started with a small pitch so you understand the content. And then we came in with the hook. And the hook is these guys getting married and tornado, pumpkin chunk in kayak through a drive-thru jousting on tractors. You know exactly what this silly world is, right? And then from there in a series, you want to highlight the characters. This is Jasper and we describe Jasper. We have a picture, a copier of Doug. Funny. So we understand that Doug is a sweet, thoughtful kid who's always trying to do the right thing. And Jasper hears the moral compass. So we understand putting the visual to the text that helps us a little bit. And then we have Tomas, he's the impulsive voice of the people. Gerald, from hey Arnold, we have Molina who was the bossy, scheming ring leader. So with the characters in a series, the characters show up first and foremost. Again, the characters are going to be what is driving stories in a feature or a short film. It's more about the plot or the tone, or the location in the world. So after I gave them the little fun, little hook with the nineties thing, I went straight into the look in tone. So just very quick drawings from references like Fincher, Edgar Wright, router, deacons, Fargo, ha fuzz, Back to the Future even. And a few pictures that have color graded to all kind of look and feel like they're from the same movie. Almost this one maybe needs a little more green in it, but they look and feel roughly like they're from the same movie. So hitting you over the head. Now, this is a cinematic comedy drama. This, this is basically a continuation of the look and tunneling. So this is more comps of what you're in for basically. So this is essentially a collection of egger, right? And the Coen brothers who are my favorite filmmakers. But then he had some stranger things over here. You have game night over here. So you know that it's going to be a cinematic movie, but it's going to be a funny drama. First and foremost, the look and tone kind of transitions into the themes of the film. So the themes of this film, instability versus control, fixating on the past versus moving on. So I would, you know, that some people like themes to be little catchy quotes. I don't terribly love that approach, but you know, if, if that was your approach, it could be something like learning to accept the things you cannot control. We have a nice little quote here to break things up, makes us feel smart and religious works as a transition. So from themes I went into the world. So this is a similar to Netflix Stranger Things. Much of the story in our cuts between a quiet town and a top secret lab through the aberration, though the aberration takes place in present day. So we're distinguishing from a stranger things and that it's not this eighties vibe. It is a modern day, but it's a kind of suburban, rural location, meets a top-secret government lab, right? Which is very similar to Stranger Things, thus the comps, but we need to differentiate right from there. We went into the characters. And so again, with a series, you want to start with the characters and then everything follows. But with a film, you want to start with the plot, the world, the themes, the look in tone, et cetera. Because this project kind of has a mystery element to it. This project, we're not giving away a lot. Man, alternate universe. Definitely won't learn half until halfway through. So this one, I didn't want to give away the full plot. I didn't want you to completely know every step of what was happening. I wanted to leave a lot of mystery to that. And because of that, that's why I went into the tone and the themes first without having a run through of the plot. So other films, I would do that. So my pitch for this Western here, Lone Star nation, we have a quote, we have a logline, and then we have an overview. So this is a little bit more of a description. Again, this look, this is four paragraphs, so you're not gonna get a 120 minute film in four paragraphs, but you're hitting the high points. You're leaving it on a little bit of a cliffhanger, but you're letting the reader understand exactly what this film is. So as you can see, all these pitches are a little bit different. This trust fund kids, we go into two pages of the plot. This all depends on who you're pitching this to, what the setting is. If this is in a boardroom meeting, you're probably not going to read two pages of text. You want to hit the high notes. Now if this is a friend of yours or a relative or a friend of friend, and you're meeting in a more intimate setting. And you know, you have a little bit more time, then this is perfectly fine to be able to go over all of these ideas. But take into consideration your audience, take into consideration the confines of the meeting. And that will kind of dictate how much you need to be writing about the actual plot itself. Because at the end of the day, these are Investor people. These are people who enjoy the creative world. And that's obviously why they're here. But to them, this is a business opportunity. And so some investors, if they do have a ton of money, they might be willing to invest in something and count their money as a complete loss and just be excited about seeing it on screen. But most investors do want to see something on screen, but they're more excited about getting a little bit of their money back, or in a perfect world, more of their money back. So that is in relation to the creative. What I'm saying is only hit the high notes and on a cliffhanger and get people enticed versus completely spelling it out for them is typically the way to go. I think it's important to note also that with a series, you can highlight sample episodes. You can highlight sources of conflict, central tensions. So with a series you want to make sure that people know that it is a long sustained idea. You know, if you have ten episodes in a season, if it's half-hour long, that means you have five hours and one episode if you wanted one season, if you wanna do four seasons, we're talking 20 hours. Can you create a cast of characters and put them in a world where you have 20 hours of content that's very different than a feature film. Feature film only needs to be 90 minutes to a 120 minutes. So on the series idea, just make sure that you're devoting a lot of time and effort into the Sample Subject Matter, sources of adventure, sources of conflict, possible episodes, and things like that. So that was obviously a whole lot of information. And I think when it comes down to it, just knowing that there's a difference in a film project versus a TV project is very different. Film, you want to highlight the world, the tone, the plot, the story. And in series you want to highlight the characters. Now, your pitch should have all of these components, but you should spend more time on characters if you're on the TV version. So again, just super quick recap. You start with the title page. From there you have some sort of logline synopsis, some sort of brief overview. It can be a description of the first third of the movie. It could be just a few sentences. It could be doma donor meets Scarface, right? It can be anything you want it to be. Whatever you think will hook the audience from there. Now that they have an idea what the movie is about, you can go into the theme and the world tone, the feel of the movie, you highlight the characters involved. Now they know the brief overview, the look and feel of it, and the characters involved. If you want, you can have a more detailed description of the plot in a TV series. You could line up the whole pilot if you wanted to. You could do some sample episode pitches for a film. You could go over the whole film. It depends on what your meeting is, what you have time for, and things like that. So this is only about two-thirds of the pitch. This is the creative of the pitch. So this is everything that goes into the creative content that you've already, you've already made, you've already done the legwork. It's just organizing all these thoughts and ideas into the pitch deck on the creative. And then from the creative will go into the business side of things. 15. The Business Part of the Pitch: So let's switch to the business end of this pitch. And to do that, we really need to analyze our investors. So it's important to think, you know, what is the mindset of an investor in a creative project like this? First off, these are business people there most likely looking for a return on their investment. If they're not looking for a return on their investment, that they are so successful and so wealthy that they've had a lot of previous success. Now, investors can put their money in so many different places. They could put it in the stock market, they put in real estate that could do all this stuff. But they're choosing to listen to you pitch a creative idea. Now these investors are people who have background in this creative world as well, or they've always wanted to. These are people who want to be around the creative, but maybe you don't necessarily have the creative talent themself, but they have the resources. And so while it's important to highlight all of the good creative you've done. You definitely have to have where they're coming from in mind, right? The number one rule of marketing is know your audience and this is exceptionally important here. So these type of investors want a project that stands out above everything else, but at the same time is still accepted in the broad movement of movies. So they want something that's different enough to stand out, but the same enough to be accepted, right? And so one thing that I loved to do with that approach in mind is a Y. This Y now page. So little sample of a Y, this Y now page. This is in the small town troubles of Jasper and Hamas. This is the story, the hey Arnold set in the world of king of the hill. So why this, why now, since the information revolution is hit full swing, there have been very few, if any, children's cartoons rooted in everyday reality, like popular cartoons of the nineties, Doug hey Arnold, rocket power, recess, et cetera. Most contemporary cartoons are fantastical and outrageous. Think Adventure Time, SpongeBob Square pants and Phineas. And for, in the late nineties and early two thousands, hey Arnold and rocket power were wildly popular shows on Nickelodeon. Hey Arnold revolved around kids and his friends in the heart of Brooklyn, getting into big city antics. Rocket power focused on a group of kids growing up in Santa Monica playing extreme sports. When it comes to children's cartoons set between the two coasts, the landscape is surprisingly lacking. Those shows like king of the hill, Friday Night Lights and even Walker, Texas Ranger, embrace a middle America. There aren't any children shows that due. So what I'm doing here is I'm showing what sets this show apart. It's set in middle America with Middle America kids, but it's the same dynamics, the same type of show that's been accepted before, like hey Arnold and rocket power. So again, you want something that is different enough so it stands out, but the same enough. So it's accepted. Now, why this, why now is also a great place if you're doing something that's political or historical or anything that does have a shorter Shelf life than other projects would. This show could be made at any time as long as there's not a show that's doing the exact same thing before it gets made. But if you were focusing on a show revolving around the coronavirus pandemic, maybe you want it done sooner. Maybe you think people aren't ready to laugh at that yet, so maybe you think that'd be better later, but this is a great spot to have any kind of timely show as well Y, this Y now definitely have in mind your investors when creating this section. You know, it's also a good idea to have an investor tailored page. And what I mean by that is making the pitch a little bit more personal. So this small town troubles of Jasper and Hamas, This was an animated series idea I had and I was pitching this to accompany that had had a series set in a camp. So as a series about these collected kids at this summer camp. Now, you can see some overlaps between kids in rural America versus kids at summer camp. So what I did is I dedicated a whole page letting them know, hey, you know, I don't know. It seems a lot like the show you already have. Well, it's not. And then I went into a description of why it's not. And I highlighted it could play off of the success of this show. However, it's a very different show. So one thing that's nice about how you can set up these PDFs is you can basically print out different versions for different investors. So when I'm pitching this idea to other investors, I have a different version where I just don't include this page and it goes straight to sample episodes. You want to make the investors feel like you have put a bunch of time and effort, not only into the show obviously, and not only into the pitch, but you've actually considered them personally for an investment opportunity. You know, you always want to highlight previous successes and tie them to the project you're currently working on. So for this project, this short film, I went ahead and wrote some stuff up about me, Webby Award-winning 50 million views online, just some accolades like that. So I'm showing investors that I do have a track record of success. Now if I was working on a project and I had a big name attached to the project. I would want to highlight that almost first and foremost, you would really want to advertise the fact that you have a certain star attached to your movie or to your short film. Investors, strangely enough, are a little less risk prone than you would think. So if they see that Chris Pratt has said that he's going to do your TV show. They are going to be much more on board then if you don't have any names at all. So when it comes to past successes, you are relying on the level of risk aversion that your investors have. So again, depending on how well you know your investors, this is something that you definitely want to highlight. Now if you are doing a smaller project, you're trying to raise funding, chances are. You don't have CRISPR add-on board, but you might have someone that you might recognize visually, but maybe you don't know their name, maybe you don't know why you recognize them. So when you do have people onboard who are attached, have their name but also their credits as well. Just so you can say, oh, office-based Emily was great news, Bigelow, That was funny. I remember this guy. So you definitely want to highlight anyone who may be on board if there are smaller, name a smaller face. Definitely have a section where you're highlighting what they're from. And again, past successes. If you have successfully made a movie and sold it for more, all my gosh, highlight that so prevalent because that is what investors are looking for. If they know that the last project may their investors 20% on their money, they're gonna jump on board. The stock market only gets 8% a year. This is something that you definitely do want to highlight. You know, it's great to have accolades. It's very to have credits here. It's great to say, okay, Webby award winning. But if you say, hey, I can actually make your money back, that trumps all of the accolades. So it is very important to highlight past success. Now another thing, if this is for a grant of some sort, if this is for SMS, sort of state or federal art programs aren't spending, you definitely want to highlight any sort of diversity boxes you may be checking. So if this is a female lead film that's great, highlighted. If this is a story about latinos, awesome, highlighted again, this comes back to knowing your audience. If this is a state-sponsored art grant, that this is a state-sponsored art grant. They're looking for diversity, No question about it. Especially if you're making narratives, silly comedies, fun comedies. Art grants are typically given to documentaries that highlight humans struggle and, and highlight important issues. They're typically not given to, hey, Arnold meets king of the hill, right? So if you can show them that you're silly comedy is actually highlighting the struggles of an immigrant family. If you can show them the diversity that you have on board, if you can show them that it actually has a rich heart to it that lines up with these things that the art grants care about. So know your audience. Now if this is a new investor, if this is someone who is interested in this world but has not dip their toes in it yet, you may have to have some slides that explain how the investing world works. Or if you're doing it in a non-traditional way. Now for this short film, I was raising $50 thousand to create this short film to be used as part of the feature. And because of that, it was a kind of confusing, not straightforward approach to the investment. So I had this little waterfall picture of, okay, first distribution fees and producer fees are paid. And then early bird investors get 50% feature investors 15 late-stage 10%, and then a 50-50 split to all investors and the production company. So this would be for either, again, for new investors who don't understand the payout process. Or if you're doing a payout structure. That's a little bit different than traditional. So if I was just raising a money for a feature film, then I might not even have any of this stuff. If I'm presenting this to a seasoned investor, I've even included risks. And then a couple sample scenarios of people investing their money. Again, these are to be presented to people who have not invested before, so they don't really understand this process. So this pitch, pitch deck is 39 pages, right? If I'm, if I'm presenting this to a season investor, maybe I'm cutting out the last half and it's only going to be, you know, 20-25 pages. So again, know your audience, know there level of investing expertise and help them out, hold their hand every step of the way. Now one thing that you want to project to these investors is that this is going to be a successful project that you've been working on for awhile. And you will continue to be working on for awhile. And it will be successful regardless of if you get their money or not. So you want to project the idea that this is a train. You gotta get on it. Well, you can, if not, you're going to miss out on it. If you come from the perspective of, oh, if we don't get your money, this isn't going to happen, then they're going to realize that you're not as motivated as they want you to be. And that's just kind of the psychology to this game unfortunately. Now, because of that, you want to show that you've put a lot of time and effort into this project. So on top of having a beautiful creative pitch deck here, you want to let them know that, hey, I've already written the short film and completed the feature script there, finalized and ready for you to read, as well as multiple outlines, overviews and treatments are creative team is currently store storyboarding the short film, and we'll have it finished by extremely near future. Other work samples are available upon request. So again, this sets the investor at ease to know that this is going to be a successful project that's moving forward regardless of if you get their money or not. This is a successful train that they want to jump on and be part of the success. So you've obviously spent months of your life writing the film. In addition to creating the Pitch Deck. If you just have a pitch deck and say, trust me, the creative is gonna be awesome. Not a single person is going to invest in that. Unless you have chris pratt attached, you definitely want to highlight the work that you've put into it before you highlighted previous successes. Right now, you're highlighting all the work. If you haven't registered with the guild, make sure you put that on the pitch deck. It looks professional and it shows that again, you're taking this project very seriously. So definitely have in mind the psychology of an investor. Know your audience and play to that audience. Although this is a creative project that you are excited about, you're excited about the creative because you've made it right. You were in charge of the creative. You are the creative. But these other people love the creative, but they want to know the business. They want to know how is it going to succeed? Why is it going to succeed? So definitely play to that. If anything. Sadly, the business part is more important than the creative. If you say, we have these people attached who have Oscars were telling this story of an immigrant family. And we already have distribution in place. But we haven't quite figured out what the story is that is going to be more appealing than if you figured out the entire story with absolutely no business sense. 16. Intangibles: Okay, so let's talk about the actual presentation, the actual day, the actual Our wherever it is that you're meeting, that you're using this pitch deck to pitch your project. Now, first off, in my experience, these pitches are one of two things. They are to a company filled with a board of people and you're in a room with maybe anywhere from three to 12 executive types, you have an hour to do this entire presentation that includes Smalltalk, That includes questions, that includes everything. Now there's that approach and there's also the friend of a friend of friends, Uncle, just some guy. Approach. Your meeting at a coffee shop, your meeting at an apartment, you're meeting on a yacht, whatever. Uh, yeah, it would be a good situation, I guess. So you're meeting with this person either one-on-one or it's, you know, an investing Duo or whatever. And this is more intimate. This is longer than an hour. You're spending some time with them and they want to get to know you and your personality and if you're a fun person to be around. So these are the two types of pitch meetings and they're very different. Now if you are pitching to a group of people in a business setting, in a boardroom. You have an hour. So you're not doing a ton of small talk. You are jumping right into it. You are also using an AV setup. So you're using a projector or screen of some sort. So you, you're watching all of your pitch slides digitally. Now. You are meeting one-on-one in a more intimate setting. You're going to print out these pitch decks. You, you always do. Sorry to clarify. You always will print out the pitch deck, but in a one-to-one meeting, its you'll only be looking at the papers most likely probably won't have some sort of projector or anything like that, but it's good to know what circumstance you'll be in. So again, intimate meeting, you can have more small talk. This is probably more than an hour. So you can, you can talk about yourself. You can get to know the person more. You can talk about, you know, find commonalities. And honestly in these meetings, these people are just wanting to know if you're a fun person to be around. If you can hold a conversation, if you are in a situation where you have written a project with someone else, it's probably a good idea to talk it over beforehand. And whichever the two of you have a more charismatic personality, let that person carry the conversation a little bit more. And so this is a time to put, put your pride to the side. And if you are, the more introverted, quiet writer type, probably a better idea to have your more actuary producer e, jovial partner do most of the talking. If you're presenting to a group of people, you probably want the presentation to only last about 40 minutes or so. Because you want to answer questions afterwards, you want to have a tiny bit of time at the beginning to settle in. If people are late. Keep in mind that when people on business schedules, if an hour meeting means it's probably only about 50 to 55 minutes before the next meeting uses that conference room. So this is a much quicker presentation. Do your research regardless, try and figure out what projects these people were involved in. Highlight similarities, find what successes they've had in the past, and somehow relate that to the project that you're pitching. So the setting of the pitch meeting is very important. And one thing I should note about the group setting versus individual setting is that in the group setting, I would pass out the tangible paper printed out slides after the meeting for at least after the presentation, before the Q and a. Make sure you print these out on nice card stock. Spend a little bit of money doing that. So you stand up, you present the slides, and then you hand out the papers afterwards, right before the Q and a. That makes sure that people are focused on you while you're presenting. They're focused on the idea that you're currently on, the slide you're currently on, and they're not just sifting through the pages. If you pass out these pages beforehand, you're going to hear paper rustling the whole time you're trying to present. People aren't gonna be focused on what you're saying. They're just going to be looking through the deck, finding an excuse to not pay attention. So pass them out right before the Q and a. If you are one-on-one with someone, chances are you will only be using the paper. So you you give the paper to them initially. So there's a lot that goes into the psychology of the presentation. Just the location, the setting of the presentation. Let's talk about the flow of the presentation. Because you walk into the room, you have a little bit of small talk. How things band, since I've seen you last, what projects are you working on? Very quick before you go into it? Now you don't have to immediately dive into the slides. The worst kind of presentations, everybody knows this are the people that read off bullet points as they're being presented. No one wants to sit through that. That reminds you of the early days of college, right? Being taught by a TA. So before you go into the slides, I would focus on what problem you're trying to fix. Thanks, Shark Tank, right? What is the problem? Why do you have the solution? Especially if this is with a company. So if you know that this company has been trying to reach a certain audience, if you know that this company has been looking for a certain type of show, highlight that and don't tell them how you know it, either. Your friend who is part of the company's tips you off that the company is looking for sci-fi movies. Walk in there talking about how there's a need for sci-fi movies that the current ones aren't hitting the mark and that you love sci-fi movies. The company is gonna think that you're a kindred spirit versus being tipped off by an insider, right? So start with the problem that you're trying to fix. That kinda goes back to that one slide that I had, that one series of slides that I had in the aberration. My problem was the nineties had incredible cinema. And then we had ten years of long slow fantasy films and ten years of disjointed superhero films. So that was the problem I was trying to fix with this. I wanted a movie with a twist. I wanted movie that was structurally interesting. So start with the problem you're trying to fix. And then one thing that is great also is introducing the idea with a visual. So before you jump in to your slides, what if you have a video could be yours, could be a trailer for something else. If you have something visual, What if you have a problem? I always thought an incredible pitch meeting. Think of if you were trying to pitch the idea, Jurassic Park, right? This was the late eighties, early nineties. You have, you have a meeting with Spielberg and you're in there in the room and you have a glass of water that you take a sip from and you put it down. And then you start talking about the T-Rex and how big the T-rex was and how menacing the T-rex was. And then you slowly hit your fist on the table and you point to the ripples in the water, right? Something like that. That scene in that movie is so iconic that if you could hit someone with that in a pitch meeting, you'll have everyone's attention. So think visual. It could be ripples in a glass of water. It could be a problem. Maybe you've even had a prototype made of some merchandise. Maybe you're going to sell action figures. Maybe this is a superhero movie and you want action figures. You've spent a $100.2, $100, and how much it costs to create a prototype of an action figure. One is visual and tangible, but two, it goes back into the psychology of an investor. This person is so dedicated to this project. They've gone ahead and made a proof of concept prototype of an action figure. So start off with something visual, something tangible, something exciting. Your pitch deck is great and has some hooks. But at the end of the day, it's still two-dimensional. It's still going to be words on paper, is still going to be words on a screen. So you want to use all the senses. You want to use all the dimensions. You want to make this as immersive as you possibly can. It doesn't need to be gimmicky, but use all the talents you have. 17. Leave Behinds: So how do you make your investor? Remember you, especially if you're presenting to a company that is hearing pitch after pitch after pitch, well, it great way is some sort of tangible or leave behind. So again, if we had created some sort of prototype for merchandise, if we have some sort of prop, some sort of visual that we start our presentation with. Let's go ahead and leave that with our investor. Three days from now, when the investor is sifting through the dozens of movies, movie ideas that they've heard. They might look over and see the action figure on the desk. So definitely leave your investors with the printed out PDFs. That's a non-negotiable definitely do that. So they have that with them, but also have some sort of leave behind something simple. You're not trying to bribe them. You know, it doesn't need to be worth hundreds of dollars. But something simple, something visual, something that you've used in your presentation that conveys the tone of the movie or conveys the story at the movie. If you're movie had a motif, what would it be? What if this aberration short film that's set in this lab with this physicist. What if he's always on his calculator and I've left behind a calculator, something small. This Lone Star Nation Western War film was about Texas secession. So what if I left behind a tattered US flag, right? Something simple that conveys the idea of the film. Leave behind are kind of a nice little icing on the cake. So you've done your research, you know who this investor is. You've presented your film in a way that it speaks specifically to the investor. They know that you spent months of your life working on the creative. You've made incredible characters and enticing story and a perfect movie. Now, when they're sitting at their desk and they see the little action figure that you've left behind. They know that you've gone even a step further. Think of the difference when you give someone a gift at Christmas and they opened it up and say thank you and move on. Versus when you give someone a gift and a week later, they send you pictures of their kids playing with it saying, thank you, this has brought so much joy into our household. Those are two very different scenarios. You feel so much more appreciated. This leave behind is a thank you. This leave behind is a thanks for listening. I promise you're in good hands and that's what every investor wants to hear.