No Budget Filmmaking 101 | Feisal A. | Skillshare

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No Budget Filmmaking 101

teacher avatar Feisal A., The Feisty Filmmaker

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

23 Lessons (1h 4m)
    • 1. No Budget Filmmaking

    • 2. What is No Budget Filmmaking?

    • 3. Identifying Your Strengths

    • 4. Objective

    • 5. Story

    • 6. Production

    • 7. Post Production

    • 8. Marketing

    • 9. Case study #1 - The Intro

    • 10. Case study #1 - The Set Up

    • 11. Case study #1 - The Post

    • 12. Case study #1 - The Take Away

    • 13. Case study #2 - The Intro

    • 14. Case study #2 - The Set Up

    • 15. Case study #2 - The Take Away

    • 16. How I Shot a Film for $1000

    • 17. #1 How I Shot - Guidelines

    • 18. #2 How I Shot - Feedback

    • 19. #3 How I Shot - Assembling Your Team

    • 20. #4 How I Shot - Sponsorships

    • 21. #5 How I Shot - Editing

    • 22. #6 How I Shot - Post Filming Strategy

    • 23. #7 How I Shot - Selling Your Film

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About This Class

In this course, I talk about understanding what 'no budget filmmaking' is and what it entails. I will also guide you on how to produce a 'no budget' short film, utilizing whatever resources you have. Finally, I discuss 2 case studies of films and how it was produced successfully.

Learn why it is effective especially for young, aspiring filmmakers and step-by-step strategy in planning your no budget short film.

Welcome to my class!

Meet Your Teacher

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Feisal A.

The Feisty Filmmaker


“Growing up, I remember my brother and I loved to play make-believe, coming up with stories and acting out these adventures. This was when I realized I had a passion for storytelling.”

In 2010, Feisal Azizuddin co-founded a media company called Feisk Productions. In 2014 he ventured into TV and produced two reality shows which aired on local TV and VOD platforms. In 2016, Feisal shifted focus to films. He has directed and produced short films which have been screened in festivals such as Monterrey International Film Festival, New Zealand’s Vision Feast Film Festival, Crimson Screen Horror Film Festival and George Town Festival (MY).

In 2018, Feisal directed and produced his first feature film, ‘Temenggor’ which was picked up by Amazon Prime Vi... See full profile

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1. No Budget Filmmaking: Hi. My name is Faisal. As is it in? And in this class, I'm gonna teach you how to produce a no budget short film. I'm gonna teach you the dues and adults what you need, what's required and how you can run an effective production with no budget at all. I'm going to teach you the concept. No budget filmmaking and how to effectively take advantage of the resource is you already have our guide. You step by step in identifying strengths they already possess to coming up with a good story to the filming production, post production, and to also marketing your short film. I will also talk about the treats off, no budget filmmaking, what to do, where to go and how to end up with a quality no budget. Welcome to my class. 2. What is No Budget Filmmaking?: Hi, everyone in this class, I'm gonna teach you about no budget filmmaking. Now, what is no budget? Filmmaking is basically filmmaking, with almost little to no budget at all, I would say no budget filmmaking is doing a film entirely driven by passion but also being involved and micromanaging in every stage off the production. No budget filmmaking is good, because expectation, it's low. When you do the project, you don't have to invest much in it. You don't have to, um, report to your investors. Don't have to find funding. You have defined investors. No budget Filmmaking is great for experimenting different topics, different taboo topics or even different directing or film styles. No budget filmmaking is great, especially for young filmmakers. Are aspiring filmmakers because you will be involved in almost every stage on the production, from the pre production to the filming, the principal photography to the post production to the marketing. So by being involved in these in all the stages, you get to see exactly the work for you entire project, and that is experience which you can't get anywhere else. Through these experiences, you get to see how to do things, how not to do things. Meeting the right people, meeting right talents producing content, which may be the orders might not like on audience will like, so it's is perfect to actually play around with the type of content you make. One of the key takeaways also is that you'll be working with an extremely small crew. We'll be learning how to pull in favors on me, different contacts and also see how you can produce something literally out off nothing. Aside from all the good stuff that nobody if you're making brings, there's also ah, catch. Usually it's not for everyone. So filmmakers who try to to go down this path will be required to be extremely hard working to be extremely hands on will need to take the initiative. If you don't know how to do something, they expected to let him how to do it and read up on it so that you can do it yourself and not pay someone else to do it. In that respect, you gain all the knowledge that you've lived by doing this process. So I talked about the what and the why off No budget filmmaking. I'd like to give an example off a filmmaker who started off by doing no budget films, Um, and eventually rose to be one off the most, um, popular or sought after directors in Hollywood today. So there's a director who started off by doing literally no budget short films. Andre genre he specialized in was horror. He would get his wife toe act in in all these short films, and he did about 10 short fields and one off them really hit it off. It's probably one of the most popular horror shot films on YouTube, and the short film is called Lights Out. This Guy. His name is David F. Samberg. He got picked up to do the feature film of Lights Out, and then he recently did a film called Sha Zam, the superhero film. This is how he rose from literally doing films in his own room in his own house to doing a Hollywood production 3. Identifying Your Strengths: So how do you start? How do you start doing a no budget project? So in this class, I'm gonna use in the context off no budget short film. Before you actually take the path off doing a no budget project, you have to first take a look at yourself and think, What are your strengths as a filmmaker? I even a directing. I gotta producing I good at editing shooting. Are you able to learn these things? Because the more skills are you good at, the less that you would have to pay someone to do it. Okay, now, don't get me wrong. When we say that it's a no budget production or no budget filmmaking, it does not mean that money doesn't have to. They spent in most cases, yes, money will be spent, but it won't be that much. You'll be from your own pocket. It could be like $50 or less than $100. $5200 is not considered even a low budget or micro budget. It's almost considered hardly anything, especially for a production. So after you figured out your strength as a filmmaker, then you have to identify. Are you savvy are you tech savvy with cameras? Do you know about cameras? Do you know about all the equipment? But of course, no budget filmmakers. They would usually take the initiative. So you don't know how to use a camera. Learn? You don't know how these old equipment learn. Um, And if you don't have these equipment, try to pull in favors. When it comes to shooting, that's when you put in favors. Get a friend to lend it to you on and learn how to operate it. I think Google is your friend, and you can learn a lot. And cameras are not very difficult to operate. By identifying all your strengths, you know what to eliminate So, you know, to eliminate the cost in hiring, Let's say, an audio guy or a cameraman, and it can just be you behind the camera, directing while also, um, shooting at the same time. So the more that you are able toe handle everything yourself, the easier it is. Your production will be 4. Objective: I'd like to talk about objectives. Okay, so now we've got your strength list about you know exactly what you're capable off. You know exactly what you bring to the table. So now it's time to actually figure out what are your objectives off doing this project? You need to figure out what is your end goal. Your angle could be that you want. You want views you're gonna put in YouTube. You want to get up subscribers. You want people to see your work and have a good time. Have a scale to or let's say your angle could be that you want to submit it to festivals and you want to get the recognition and you want to build your portfolio as a filmmaker. So you have to decide already at this point, which is your end goal. The next step will be to allocate just a small, small budget. I'm talking about maybe $50 or no more than $100. This is just in case you need to let say, pay for people parking or pay for for food or batteries for your camera batteries for your order equipment. So I think by having a small budget, you know that. Okay, $50 is what I'm setting, and I'm not gonna set. I'm not going to spend more than $50 on this project. The rest will be done through favors will be done through. Ah, DIY I Why? I'm gonna learn how do it myself. I'm going to try and, um, use all the resources I can. So once you settle down with a budget, you have to stick to it. Because then you're gonna decide on the concept off your short film. You cannot make it too complex. You cannot make it like it takes place in 10 different locations. You try to keep the concept as pure as simple, as effective as possible. Don't forget nobody short films. I usually, um, very high concept short films, irrespective of the genre. It could be, let's say, a very compelling conversation between two people. Or if it's ah, horror film, it could be maybe a three jump scares in the space off two minutes kind of thing or someone exploring. Ah haunted house 5. Story: story. Now this is one of the most important sections in doing a no budget production. Now keep in mind that you're doing a no budget short film and you have to ensure that your story is catchy, is captivating. It's snappy, usually micro budget or no budget short films. They have high concept values, and a lot of people mistake these no budget or low budget films as low quality or no quality projects. When that's totally not the case. The key term in these no budget productions is that you have no one to help you, so you have limited resources and you have to do everything by yourself. But you have strength in your story. How do you decide on choosing the right story? This is down to the objectives which you set yourself. If you're doing a no budget short film purely to get to festivals, then you might want to choose a very compelling, a very important story that really matters to maybe society or that needs to get across toe an audience that can appreciate it. If you're doing this project to basically get views, create audience, get entertain people with your with your work. Then you have to choose a topic which is very relatable to them, which are most likely, which will most likely share and pass along. And you want the reaction like when they watch the like, Wow, that was pretty good. That was I was blown away by by that short film. Or you know, that while that short film was was pretty scary, I think going to share it. So on those type of reactions you want, it has to be something which they can resonate with. So once you come up with your idea for you on no budget short film, you write a rough treatment and then you craft out a very simple script. Spend some time on the script. Take your time. There's no rush because you have to do everything yourself. You have to ensure that the script is ready for production because it's a no budget production. Try to minimize your shooting locations, usually films with limited resources they will film everything in one location would have maybe one at most two actors, but the story is pretty fast moving is pretty compelling. It's pretty high concept, so these are the kind off traits that you want in your production, so productions with limited resources would tend to be about between 2 to 5 minutes. Well, for one, production is very expensive, and it requires a lot of people. In our case, there's no budget production. You will be micromanaging almost every aspect of it. So you don't want toe over. Complicate the amount off work that you have to do, and it's just gonna be more difficult and Indian. If you'll soon realize that you've written too much. Is too much work and your hope for you it's going to collapse. Also, try to minimize the production value. Not to say that. Make your project look cheap by, Let's say, try not to make it a very complex set. You don't need very many props. Try to choose locations, which have almost everything you need already, Um, for your project, and you don't need to buy anything else. For example, if you were filming, maybe, ah, a short film about a post apocalyptic short film, try to film an abandoned, place like way, have broken walls, smashed glass and that would save you on actually creating a set. It's important to keep remind yourself in this story section that it is a no budget short film project, so try not to go overboard with your story, and especially with your effects or your dialogue or your production values. 6. Production: production. This is where the little money that you've set aside for your no budget production. This is where it will be spent. This is the time to call in favors. So in terms off the talents, if you have friends or let's say you, you know people are you see, maybe theatre actors who we feel fit. Your story approached them. Tell them, make a deal with them. Tell them that you know what? I don't have a budget. But if this thing becomes big and I can pay you, I will pay you, if I may should sell this. Why Medicare Recognition? I will share it with you when deciding on the talents. Tried to choose aspiring actors who who also want to make a name for themselves who also need a portfolio. And this is where both of you can grow. You can find talent almost everywhere. It could be like film. Students could be theater students or theatre actors. It could be like friends, family people willing to just do it for fun. You can just put a quick call out on social media and see who's interested, but what's very important is that you have to try to convince them that, um, you don't doing this for money? Um, that it's a no budget production, but always give something back to them. So even though they're doing it for free, tell them that if you can pay the next time, if you manage to maybe in the future, sell this project or if you get some sort of recognition from from it you will share with them. You will announce it to to, Let's say, media, if you get called in if you get coverage, finding the right crew is very, very crucial in your no budget production. And if let's say you are very savvy already with handing camera's audio, then you've got yourself no problems. Yeah, I mean, you can do everything yourself. You just need maybe in a production assistant to It'll help you. But let's say you don't have anyone. You don't know how to operate a camera or any audio. What you gonna do now? The best thing is reach out to your friends or your family. Those, especially that know a bit about cameras, tried to talk in the ones which know how to deal with cameras and basic audio. At least then you get to kill two birds. One stone. You get the audio cover to get the video. Cover it. If you still can't find someone to help you with filming your project, then try to reach out and and tell them that you can pay them anything now. But maybe within three months you will pay them something or installments or something, or you take them out for a meal for lunch or for dinner. At least then they won't feel so hard done by. If you're a hardcore no budget filmmaker and you almost do it a cellphone maker, then I think learning how to pick up a point and shoot is quite is pretty simple. In most productions. Finding the right locations and renting the locations or getting permission to use the location can be very, very expensive. Try to find locations. It could be public locations. We don't need permission or if it's, ah, simple shoot. Try to find locations where no one really cares of issue. They're not tried to maybe do it in your own house. Try to do it in in your friend's house or your family is your family runs a maybe a cafe or some sort off office. Reach out to them. Tell them, Look, you know, ever have a film? A simple short film will just take one night, a couple hour shoot. Can I just rent your your office? And I promise I won't touch anything just four hours and I'll shoot the film. And most of the time you don't really have to pay much regard to pay anything at all. It's issues the permission that you need a great way to find. The location that matches your story is to put a call out on social media. Just ask your friends about whether or not they know off locations which look like and then show an example off the location you have in mind. So it's down to filming day. You've got your script, you got your cast, you've got your crew, or you could be the crew on. You've got your location and everything is in front of you now. How do you execute things? No off course for no budget productions. It's very, very important to plan ahead. No, exactly the type of camera shots that camera angles you want. Try not to go for any fancy shots. Try to go for stable shots. Very are fixed shots way. You don't have to move around a lot, Andi. It's very simple to shoot. Always work within your means. Remember that it's a no budget project and that you're trying to reduce how complicated it is and the less complicated it is, the higher chance your project will be completed. 7. Post Production: post production. So if he had followed the steps from the start, then post production will be pretty straightforward. If during the filming, you actually managed to simplify your camera angles, simplify your your your scenes, your rushes, then, um, editing will be pretty simple. It's just a matter off following the script and following how the story pans out. That being said, you have to try and avoid over complicating the editing process during the edit. Keep focusing on the story. Edit your short film based on how well you want to tell the story. Let's say during filming you didn't get the chance to record some clear cut sound or you want to really polish your sound design off your short film you can just usually do. Itself off course is down toe D i. Y. And, um, researching and taking the initiative. So one ways to go to this thes royalty free sound effects websites or places like free sound are or where they have all these sound effects. All these sometimes even music or Ambien sounds, which would really, really raise up your production value. So let's see, during your film, there's a scene where someone shuts the door. And during filming, you did not capture the crisp sound so you can go to these websites like like I mentioned, and you can just take that sound effect and place it in, and you get a proper good crisp, Um, sounding production sound is very, very important in every production. It's very much overlooked. People tend to not pierce much attention to sound, but having a great sounding film can can go a long way. Adding music is not a necessity, and it's actually a a bonus or so preference. If you do need music, however, there are a lot off platforms, a lot of websites that offer royalty free music, and you can just use it in your production and maybe give a little credit at the end. 8. Marketing: so you're short Film is done and you have a ready film. So the next step is to get people to watch your feel. How do we do that if your goals were to get into festivals? This is when you submit your short film for festivals on, and the best place would be to upload it onto, maybe video making a private link and send screeners toe these festivals. If your goal was to get as many views as possible or entertain an audience, create an audience or create a brand for yourself, then the best place to put your project your film will be on YouTube. Now YouTube is one of the best platforms to share videos as it's very accessible, and anyone in almost anywhere in the world has access to it. Just by putting your film on YouTube is not good enough. You have to choose the right keywords to choose the right title, but also you have to stop marked in your film outside of you to such as on social media like Facebook. Start sharing it with people, start getting into Facebook groups. Another good platform to explore is read it. They're not off some red. It's where people like to share their stories. Their films, the short films, trying to just dump your link. Want to read it, try to share it with communities within Reddit. It could be based on location or based on same interests. And finally, a great way to promote your film will be to approach these websites or online portals. It could be like online magazines or could be like websites which like to share short films on day. Try to get them to review your short film Andre. An article by a short film, at least then with a review. There's more material that you can share with other people. Also, with this review, you have a rough gauge on how well you did with your short film. So that's my quick insights into how to do a no budget short film. If you need any advice or you have any questions, please feel free to drop me a message and I'll try my best to help you. Thank you 9. Case study #1 - The Intro: in this class, I will talk about a case study off a no budget short film production. So during this pandemic, a lot off film productions and film companies had to be shut down and everyone had to be long down. And this was a great opportunity to actually showcase how to execute on no budget production. You have to figure out why you are doing this short film. What's your target? What gold you want? Achieve? Do you just want, um, do a minor short film to share with friends or hoping toe, share it to a wider audience or hoping to sell it to maybe a TV channel or some sort of video on demand service? And ideally, since you're going through all the effort, I would always tend to target my nobody shot films towards, um, a wider audience, maybe YouTube, with a potential off selling it to a video on demand services. This is when your story in your script comes into play. So make sure that just like any other short film, there's an opening. There's a closing and make sense, and people, most importantly, people are left with with a sense off while or I need a watch that again. Or like, um, I need to share that with my friend kind of feeling because if you manage to achieve that, that means then you've hit your target off doing a successful no budget short film. So I filmed three short films throughout this quarantine period of about 60 days on the first short film I Did is called supple, supple means to Sweep in Malay. Supper was a very simple story off a young man who is sweeping his house at night despite his mom telling him that it's bad luck to do so. So when doing the script, I kept everything very simple. I stopped toe one location on just one cast, even though there's just one location. But it was. I cleverly chose a location, which was quite interesting. I broke down the one location into three sub locations, especially with a nobody short. I felt that the audience, if it's a five minute long short film, they would want to see some solve variation in terms off the seeds and the angles, and it would definitely help and add a little bit to your production value. If you have something like this. So with my script lot, my location said, and my cost all raring to go. I was ready to shoot because of the tight timeframe, and it's a no budget production. It's very important to ensure that your cast before they come on set, they know exactly what's gonna happen. They know exactly their movements, and they've memorized everything in their heads in terms, off placement and framing and where to go and expressions and whatnot. So usually I would have about three or four run throughs before for each scene I do it greatly helps. We don't have too many takes during shooting because of the time frame. In a resource is it was good that ensuring that your cost goes through the run through and knows everything perfectly well. Then it would minimise the much of the problems that would arise 10. Case study #1 - The Set Up: Let's talk about the equipment I use for supple. I did not have the camera I ideally wanted to use at hand. So, um, I had to decide on doing something more experimental, and I decided on using my phone Now using your phone. They're pros and cons in terms of quality versus mobility versus the ability to focus, pull in and out of focus and the battery life. So I think it was a challenge for me to shoot a five minute short film with my phone and some parts. I was happy with it, and some parts I work. I used this phone camera software called Mavis, which I downloaded from the APP store. 20 additional features such as forming in four K and for me, different formats and getting full control of the act. You had to pay more for it in that purchases. So I did not do that, and I ended up filming only in full HD, which, considering it's from a phone on my horror short those a lot of low light. The quality was compromised quite a bit in terms of lighting. I tried to make the shot film look as interesting as possible. I played around with red and blue colors because I felt that that was the vibe I was trying to give off to the audience so I would use his red and blue gels and stick them on the ladies and I would use them to set the mood off the That said, I also used a fixed lighting that was available in the house again. If you want to execute lighting like this, you don't necessarily have to have ladies or use a ladies for this can use table lamps. Or you can just use your any small lights or even as creative as possible. If you have, ah, strong torchlight or you have your phone light depends how you place it. It adds a lot of mood to your story already. So during filming out places led lights in creative positions, which would give me a more interesting element to my story. So instead of just a flat, nice, bright light on my character, I will place my led lights behind the rails upstairs, obscured a bit in the corners off the room just to give off the element off. A bit of a different kind of love feel to my short film 11. Case study #1 - The Post: after the filming was done, then it was down to post production. Now that was a bit off dialogue in this short film, so I tried to minimize dialogue because that would minimize the work load. But at the start of the film, there was a bit of dialogue, which I tried to record using built in mic on my phone. The thing about using your phone might it gives off a very hollow, amazingly sound. I pulled my cost into a small car. The car acts almost like a vocal booth. Very tight closed area, even my films, my future films. I did the idea, some of them in a car, and it works fine. If you do on a record 80 try to use audio recorder. The H four n so connected to your audio recorder would be the wireless lapel Mike. In this case, I used a wireless G three might buy Sennheiser, and I think that gave off almost studio quality kind off. Or do you? If you don't have access to an order recorder, it doesn't matter if you have a set off. Wireless mikes just connected directly straight to your camera and the source and even those of video. It doesn't matter. You can just pull in the audio in postproduction, in the case offs. Apu, I did that. I recorded the mother's voice, and I also recorded the main cost voice. I tweeted a bit so that it would fit perfectly in the story I wanted to tell. 12. Case study #1 - The Take Away: during the editing process. Try to minimize the amount off elements you want toe include in your story. I'm talking about sound effects. Yes, you can create. You can put in a nice ambient sound to create a mood, but try to minimize in terms off how much you put in. You don't have to play music throughout the whole short film. After all, the focus is meant to be on the story itself, and the music is just meant to be supporting the story. And don't overdo it with these kind off additional sound effects and stuff. If you do want to add some sound effects, I use a great site is a community site called Free Sound. Org. And you have a lof user submitted fully music, ambient sounds, mood sound Sometimes that songs there a lot of sound effects. People singing, coughing, punching After all those steps after the one cost one location, simple script, simple filming, phone cameras, ideas and the simple editing, we finally have a finished product, which is supple. Now I'm going to share a length in, um, the box below, so if you could just check it out and see how it goes, and we enjoy it dissecting the process off firming support. You can easily see how we can save on the spending long money. The studio fees doing 80 are toe maybe getting a cinematographer. Experience him atop of it to come on board when you can. Actually, just from yourself these steps again. Ah, very D I y. And I think some of you might think that, you know, I can just easy just higher a cinematographer to be my video guy. I think that works well, toe. You can put a budget in the cinematographer. I believe that this no budget short film style is a concept which you can apply to. Most productions applied well enough, and I think you will become a a well rounded filmmaker and film producer. 13. Case study #2 - The Intro: I'm gonna talk about another case study the second short film which I did during this long down period. And the short film is called. We all need someone to stay, so I like Subbu. This short film is dialogue heavy and required a lot off movement. It was a tough for short film to do because I had to direct it remotely and my cameraman was the actor himself. So he had to learn how to use a camera here to learn about of framing. So he had to learn how to become his own cinematographer. I'm gonna delve right into the story. I chose this type of story because I felt this current locked down period, um is a good way to challenge myself in terms off directing people at a distance as well as teaching them and trying to, um, improve my communication skill. It's a very straightforward story with the background the current pandemic, The Cove in 19. It follows this young man who is busy on a video call with his best friend, when suddenly the whole country is locked down, the situation worsens and zombies start to come out. The stories told through the lens of his screen in terms off his messages coming in or how he was a camera, the shakiness or his video calls. So that was a type of story I felt that, you know, only tried to do during this period. 14. Case study #2 - The Set Up: so to up the game a bit. I got to cost one being the main character and the other being his friend home. He's on a video call with is important to know that all the filming was done by the actors themselves, so I would teach them exactly how I want the shot, the framing I went where to position themselves on camera. So they required all time in terms off preproduction. One thing I thought would be pretty easy, um, was that I don't have to do any of the filming at all. I just have to direct. I was mistaken because I would have to pay even more attention, toe how the cinematography is especially, um, if I'm not on set to physically see how it plays out in this time of production, preproduction is the most important thing. How it was was that I would have sessions a day before the actual filming off the scene so I would have a total off six scenes in the story, and I broke down the chute date into five days, so because I was not physically there, I thought I wanted to take things much lower, so I would have a session just a talking session video call with my cast a day before they do the scene. So the night before they do the scene and I would tell them exactly how I wanted to be done expressions, and in some cases I would get them to do a drier. And for me, it was very important for me to choose the talent which I knew were good at certain skills . So I chose the same actor who was in support because I knew. He's very expressive. He's very easy to work with, and his movement is pretty good and quite natural. So choosing the right cost for the right role with the right skills is imperative. To The gear I chose was I did not want to go down the phone route. I went with what my cost had with him. He had a DSLR camera. The camera did not have the ideal features I wanted, like four K and settings that I usually work with, but it it was good enough for this type of production for the audio side. My cost, fortunately, still had appel of my G threes, which I had lent to him my wireless mikes and he knew how to operate it, which was a bonus for me. If let's say you'll find yourself in a situation when your cost does not have, let's say the proper equipment doesn't matter. Find another way around it. If, in this case my cost did not have the wireless G threes and I couldn't get that crisp audio , I would probably do the A D are imposed anyway. So it's it's really a matter off, um, how much more work you have to do later on, anyway? 15. Case study #2 - The Take Away: One of the aspects of this production was the use of no L E D lights because my car's did not have any. So it was all natural lights. He pulled through and everything went smoothly, and I was pretty happy with how the filming went for the supporting cast scenes. He did not have camera or audio equipment, and it helped that the story was being told through the phone screen. He recorded his entire scenes through his phone. The good thing is that we filled in four K on his phone. I think it was some song galaxy note. If I'm not mistaken, the order was pretty good, too. It was not as hollow as I thought it would be, and we just pulled in the audio and used it in the actual, um, short film. The editing for this production was was very interesting. I pulled in a favor from a friend, a sound designer friend, and he did a great, great job. If I did not have this access to my sound designer friend, I would have to do the sound effects myself. It wouldn't be as good, but, um, it's a no budget production anyway. I mean, you have to just do it ESP SS. You could. And if this production that's not live up to your standards, you just want to get better and better and better. If you do have contacts in the audio feel just got the message, try and pull in a favor and see whether or not they can help you with with your project. And with that, we came up with a short film. We all need someone to stay. So you have, ah, clear breakdown off exactly how we filmed it, how it produced it and the final outcome, and I'm going to share the link below. So please feel free to let me know your questions about your own projects. If you do have any nobody short films you want to do, and I would be more than happy to help you out, I'd like to leave you with this. Based on my two case studies, you can see clearly how we utilize our resources be the props around us, the camera gear, our contacts, pulling in favours on the resources we have in the Web. We all want to tell a particular story, but keep in mind that not every story can be told with no budget. With all the tips I've shared with you, it's just another reminder that we can still tell stories with limited resources. And learning how to tell stories with limited resources will just make us even better filmmakers and better storytellers. 16. How I Shot a Film for $1000: Hey everyone, In this class, I'm going to talk about how I shot a feature film for $100. Just for context, I will refer to my film caboose as a case study. A film which I shot for a $1000 last year. Now, how do you shoot a feature film for $100? It is very, very possible. But before that, you had to take into consideration some guidelines and criteria before you start working on this project. The first thing you need to think about is, why are you doing this feature film? Why a green through the low budget approach? Are you doing it for festivals to sell it? Are you hoping to maybe use it as a challenge to test yourself to see whether it is possible to do a film for such low amount. So once you identify exactly why you want to do this film, then you have a clear cut idea of reaching your end goal. I must stress that it's very, very important to have very practical reason for doing this film. This could be perhaps selling it to work, VOD, video-on-demand service, or training. Luck with licensing it to broadcaster. Ideally, it has to be a very practical, practical reason why doing this feature film, unless you have a lot of cash just to blow away. Ideally, you'd want to craft a film which you can sell. Because a film that you can sell will reach out to a wider audience and have mass appeal. What is your end goal? Is it fame? Is it fortune? Is it hoping that this low budget film will make your million dollars? Or is it just the passion thing or you believe in the story so much that you feel that a $1000 is enough, you do all it takes just to see this story through. So figure that out before you start on this project. If your end goal is not about making money, then tried to settle for something else. This could be letting the ropes. This could be crafting yourself to become a better filmmaker, or it also could be a chance for you to work with younger talent. 17. #1 How I Shot - Guidelines: Now that you've figured out your end goal for this project, you have to work within a set of guidelines that you will set for yourself in order to do this film for such a low amount. Ideally, choose a script which is a high concept script, which can capture the audience's attention as well as the potential to sell it. It's easy to make a film from the heart, but not everyone will like it, because not everyone will have the same vision as you, as the storyteller. So you have to meet halfway is very important to work with a script that doesn't involve too high production values. Tried to avoid writing scripts which require a VFX or action scenes, or scenes which required to go to many locations. Because all these things will just add up to the cost. It will be good to have a script that is pretty easy to shoot, but very, very watchable. So I'm referring to less complex camerawork and less movement of characters. Because again, this Help where the shooting process and in the event of delays, it wouldn't set back and production too far. If you feel that you're going in with a script that is a bit half-baked or not good enough, then maybe it's best to work with the proper script writer, someone who has done several works before. In fact, it would be pretty wise if you get a script writer on board early on. It doesn't mean you don't have a say in the script. You can come up with this story, but you just have to communicate it well to the script writers so that you guys will meet halfway. A script writer would have a better idea of what works on screen. And also, it will save you a lot of time in fixing the story and the plots and the plot holes, especially. One way to work with a script writer is, of course, you don't choose to experience writers because it might not be worth your time, especially if you can't pay. By one approach would be to work with script writers that you can cut a deal with. They are open to developing young filmmakers, of filmmakers with quite low budgets work in a deal with the script writer, tried to negotiate that, say they do this project for such a low amount. And if this film really takes off it, if it gets licensed or broadcaster, or if it has a theatrical release, then there can be some bonuses that kick in. At least then these could writers know that, okay, there's potential, there is hope for them to earn more even though they're just doing the script for such a low amount. Collaborating with the script right there is a great idea because then it will give you experience in working with futures. Good rate is two. If let's say you can't get the type of script writer or the level of script writer that you want. Then maybe tried to approach film students, tried to see the different scripts that they've written before and whether it meets your standards. If they do, then there'll be easier to cut a deal with the students because the students especially are always looking for projects to work on and add to their portfolio. So if there's a script where she tell him to write and you're telling them that, hey, look, you know, if you write my script, I can make the script that you write come to life on screen. Then it's a win-win for them also. 18. #2 How I Shot - Feedback: After you're done with your script, whether you've written it yourself or you've gotten a script writer to do it, it's very important to get some feedback on the script. Pass your script to your DP, your producer, your team, your friends, your family, as well as other prominent filmmakers. And then also tell them that this is your budget that you've allocated for your feature film. If they come back to you and they ask you, how are you going to do this film for such a low amount with this kind of script, then you know that There's some things you have to cut off, whether reduced number of scenes or make some of the elements of the film less complex. Tried to get as much feedback as possible. Be it, whether this kind of film is kinda story fits for a VOD. What type of VOD is it a Netflix edgy kind of story that can get on Netflix? Or is it more of a slow, sappy love story that fits more towards the hallmark type channels. It'll be great if your friends are there filmmakers who have gotten their films into film festivals to give feedback on your script to whether or not what type of festivals your script should be able to get into. It's very important to know that feedback on your script is crucial. Be a good feedback, positive, negative, whatever it is, tried to review all the feedback and see whether or not, are you happy? Does this feedback make sense? Sometimes they might bring up a good point because the people that read your script are the audience does no emotional attachment to your project. 19. #3 How I Shot - Assembling Your Team: So your script is ready and you want to plan a shoot. What do you do next? Before you start filming? It's very important to see the type of resources that can help you, especially considering the amount that you're working with. There'll be great to try and find collaborators. They can come on board your projects. This could mean film students, production assistants, those who are on gap year, or those who just won some sort of internship from any company or any individual, like internships, students are willing to learn. Want to learn more about filmmaking. They want to immerse themselves in a project. So more often than not, it'll be easier to get them to do your project for such a reduced amount. When planning your shoot. Also consider filming days. The longer that you film, the more expensive it becomes because you would have to cover food. You have to cover, in some cases, transport and accommodation. A good tip would be to have breaks in between. So for my film covers because a lot of them were working full-time jobs. I got everyone to film. On weekends. It worked well because there'll be a break in between the second set of filming and that break can be used to review footage. It can be used to take a breather as well as go through the costs acting and sit down and talk to them if you want things to be done in a different way on screen. When forming your production team. It's very important to keep it very compact. Again, yes, you are doing this film for such a low budget. So multiple roles are to be expected. If you're directing this, you cannot just sit and bark orders. You'd have to cover a lot of things. You'd probably be your own assistant director. You probably have to help the camera man that dp. And you probably have to train the cast yourself unless you have Acting coaches to help you. So low budget is not for everyone. You have to do the bulk of the work. But I mean, I personally find that the most rewarding, a great way to find new talent and new people to work with is to use social media, posting up information that you are looking for people to come on board and help with our feature film is great. Because it also gives you a chance of putting yourself out there as a filmmaker. Always remember this. You have to make noise to be heard. If people don't know you, if people they don't know you're doing a film or they don't know you need help with a film, then no one's ever come to you and help you. But if you are willing to go on social media, do a post-survey looking for collaborators to come on board your low budget feature film. A lot of people you'd be surprise. A lot people they would jump, had opportunity to try to chip in in some way. Sometimes you may come across one or two individuals. They might not give you cash for your films, but they will help in other ways, be lending you gear or giving a huge discount in using locations, or even putting you in the right direction, introducing you to new contacts and new people who can help you with your project. So again, it's very important to be heard, make some noise. Gathering a production team is very tricky, especially with our limited resources. They are working with. Identify key roles. The DP does sound record this location manager, production manager, production assistance, editor. These people are the ones which are call into making your film. Sometimes you might want to find a DP, a data photography who can do multiple roles, who is good at coloring and editing. And maybe you can package and deal with them. You definitely will have to forego either roles such as a data wrangler or even KEY grips, late grips. Ideally it 15, four of them. But for this project, you probably have to do with just two. 20. #4 How I Shot - Sponsorships: See you've got your script ready and you have your team in place. All that's left to do is film. Before you film, you can start approaching sponsors. Be it food brands are parallel or even beforehand, you can approach like for year and stuff. You can tell them that you're doing a feature film. You have descript, you had the team, and you are going to be shooting within these dates. And this film is going ahead. Is this brand willing to come on board to sponsor it? And you can even Layout, create a small depth layout your plans, okay? After I shoot this film, and we're going to try to sell it to Amazon Prime or Netflix or Hulu. So again, it's totally up to you. This sponsorship part is purely optional, but it does go a long way in helping easing the production process is very important to note that although sponsorships beneficial, try to not go for sponsorships, that would implement some sort of creative control over your film. Because some sponsors, they will be like, We'll sponsor your film will give you cash. But can we have a product placement for two minutes in your film? And it sounds enticing. But do you really want to have a product placement of a soft drink for so long on screen. So again, if you're happy with that, go for it, but try not to compromise the story or the quality and essence of your film just for sponsorship. 21. #5 How I Shot - Editing: Once it then we're filming, it's time to edit. If everything worked out well for you, you probably have one of the team members be the DP or the sound guy who doubles up as an editor, edit your film. This low budget approach is great. If you are constantly trying to improve yourself across multiple roles in film, I must add that as a filmmaker, it's very, very important to not just know how to direct by, not just know how to produce. I think your skills have to be right across the board. You must know be a sound, you must know a bit of camerawork. How to hold a camera. You must know a bit of producing. And you must especially know a bit of editing, because they will all combine and help you in crafting your story. And if you know all that, and if you're quite adept in that, then doing a low budget film gets easier and easier and easier the more that you do it. Because a lot of the things you can troubleshoot before the filming process begins. Or you can just absorb all the work yourself and cut love the cost. Ideally, the editor of the film should not be the director of the film. Because directors tend to one all the shots and audience scenes in. Whereas if you get an external editor who has a different approach, they will see the film in a different perspective. They will see what works there. We'll see whether the story is making sense by directors or script writers. Screenwriters, they would feel very protective of the story and just mash everything inside. 22. #6 How I Shot - Post Filming Strategy: It's time to take it to the next stage. If earlier, one of your goals were to bring your film to festivals, then you should have already shortlisted the different festivals that you plan to apply to. And you can submit a straight. Of course, each festival will have their own deadlines and notification periods. So again, tried to order the list of festivals according to which one you value the most target festivals, which you feel you have a great chance in getting into at the same time, one is submitting the festivals, start approaching VOD. And broadcasters. In fact, you could approach VOD before you start filming. By a lot of the time, these VLDLs and broadcasters, they want to see something visual and they might not pander to you if all you have is just a script. 23. #7 How I Shot - Selling Your Film: With a complete film, you can send a copy, a watermark copy to this view these and broad classes and, and tell them and ask them, what do you think? Do they wonder film? Is there something they're interested in? And you might make a purchase? I mentioned VOD and broadcasters, not because during a low budget film restricts the options. You still can have a low budget film and have a theatrical release too. Again, it depends on how much money you're willing to put up. Also, if you have a theatrical release, you would have to factor in the cost that goes into creating the TCP's, as well as marketing your film as a theatrical release with your completed film, you're able to now approach distributors and approaching.