Vincent Verdi is an aspiring film maker raising funds for a independent production via an indiegogo campaign. I asked him and a few quest about his quest. Here is his story.
Tell me about your feature film project?
I am going to skirt around this a little Matt, as I am trying to keep the film as much as under wraps until its release at Cannes.
The story is ambiguous and is a series of perspectives on someone who is having metal issues, possibly induced.
Its not designed to a joke at mental illness but a serious exploration into what is going on inside this characters head.
How has the Indiegogo campaign been going?
It is a struggle, this is a young person thing or a tool that can be exploited by people with large numbers of followers Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts.
It is hard to get people to back a film that does not have a list of ” known” actors. The problem with this principal is that thousands of film are made with “known” actors every year and they fail. We just never hear of them except when we ventured into a DVD store. History has shown that unique films with unknown cast that have been cleverly put together have in fact broken through the success wall with extreme prejudice towards the “known actor” principal. If I can mention one in particular – Blair Witch is a good example.
I believe the “Known Actor ” principal is something established by the major film distributors and film establishment to dampen the production of independent films.
What do you think is the biggest appeal regarding indie films?
Indie film are challenging to make, they present interesting ideas and they push the envelope of the art. They tend to go where major production houses and the film establishment will not go. The classic Australian Indie Film was ” Wake in Fright”
this film did what its name suggested, it woke up Australia to difficulties of living is a outback Australia and it frightened the Australia Tourist Commission who had the film banned for export in case it frightened international tourists from visiting Australia. This was a landmark film and it was essentially an indie film.
How did you get involved in film projects?
All film makers are struggling artist, we are all ways looking for a canvas, a tin of paint, brushes and a subject.
It is not a matter of getting involved, we were just born this way “as lady gaga put it” with a bug in our heads to go exploring.
Film projects are both and art and an exploration.
Why should people invest in your project?
In Australia it is illegal to sources film funding for independent film without a registered investment prospectus. This can can cost around $100,000 AUD and its is all legals and fees to a government department. Without this a film maker cannot advertise on any media, not even for $5. It is against the law and those who do find themselves prosecuted by ASIC
The film industry in Australia is heavily policed.
On the other hand the horse racing industry is not policed by any government agency. So if one wanted to sell bogus horse racing software that picks winning horse for $20,000 this is perfectly legal. You can advertise on all media as you wish.
Every year thousand of qualified film makes are pumped out of educational institutions only to find there is no work and no prospects of work because they are not taught that you cannot raise funds.
Most students want to start with indie films, but how can one spend $100,000 in legal fees, when the budget of your film is $10,000 or less. this then send them on a path of making something with a $1,000,000 or more. This path then leads them to the Australian film establishment ” Screen Australia”
the gate keepers of the Australian Film Industry. They insure that no other films like “Wake In Freight” are ever produced again.
So with so many film makers knocking on the same door for funds, soft corruption and favoritism is rife.
The system in Australia is not workable and needs to be broken.
Hopefully systems like Indegogo will help break this ridiculous situation where government funds for making film are basically spent by Film Establishment bureaucrats to holiday in Cannes.
Put money into a film via Indiegogo is not an investment it is a community contribution. This is important, I do not want to find myself being prosecuted by ASIC.