Archives For Filmmaking

Our thoughts on the craft and practice of making movie magic.

I was invited recently to join the talented Melissa Sweazy, Joann Self Selvidge, and Sara Kaye Larson in sharing our experiences and thoughts on crowdfunding, be it Kickstarter, IndieGoGo, or some other flavor. Enjoy, and check below for a handy-dandy index of topics covered, plus links to the campaigns and resources mentioned in this video.

A huge thank you to Crosstown Arts and Indie Memphis for organizing Shoot and Splice. Their investment into the Memphis film community will pay dividends for years to come.

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Creatio Ex Nihilo

Dan Baker —  June 30, 2014

When I’m writing a screenplay the blank page scares me. Why? If my screenplay is a reflection of what’s inside of me, then a blank page reveals that inside of me is nothing. At least that’s how it feels.

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Meet the Cast of ARV–3

Dan Baker —  June 27, 2014

I once asked a film school professor what should be done if you can’t find the right cast for you film. His response shocked me…

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Timid Monster is going post-apocalyptic.

Timid Monster is proud to announce a post apocalyptic project. After visiting John Gray’s Victorian house and Avarice’s treacherous world of fantasy, we’re ready for a little dirt and grime in a crumbling society.

It’s perfect timing to team up with best selling paranormal/fantasy author, Cameo Renae, to bring you a short film based on her most recent book, ARV-3.

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Work.

Hard work.

Nothing else will do.

I’ll admit, I’m an ill-tempered, insecure, wannabe filmmaker with no real success, but I get so tired of all the people who pop up overnight with a DSLR calling themselves producers and directors. They’re usually the ones bitching about the lack of state tax incentives and an un-supportive community. Many of them can’t tell a c-stand from a pancake.

I’ve styled the title of this post after the recent influx of “one simple trick” and “you’ll never believe what happens next” links I’ve seen on Facebook. I get it. We’re all tired, burned out, and desperate for a break. If you’re looking for shortcuts to the top, I have three words for you:

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You heard right! Our pokey little film, Avarice, will be kicking off this year’s Indie Memphis Film Festival in Memphis, TN, screening right along side the much talked about Escape from Tomorrow. We’re beyond honored, and so excited to be invited to screen at such an event.

You can purchase tickets for the opening night gala here.

And, if you’ve been living under a rock, allow us to introduce you to Escape from Tomorrow:

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Yup! We produced a book trailer. Crazy, right? Well, when we screened Avarice at UtopYA Con this summer we bumped into author Inger Iversen and saw a great win-win opportunity for both of us. The resulting cross-mojo-magic is the book trailer you see before you now. Check it out and read on for more behind the scenes tidbits.

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I read once that Independent Films have a 99.8% failure rate, meaning only 0.2% ever make back their initial investment. That sounds exaggerated, but for most of us filmmakers, it’s effectively the truth.

It’s time to adopt a new strategy or get left behind.

For the past couple years, Timid Monster has been feeling our way through the nebulous world of self-distribution, looking for opportunities to set up shop and eek out a living doing what we’re passionate about: blowing crap up on camera and dishing out mad feels.

We’re happy to report that there is indeed a promised land…at least for our fellow sci-fi/fantasy producers: comic book conventions!

Here’s why we think you should join us:

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I’m a busy man, as all independent filmmakers are. I don’t have time to fiddle and fuss around with my website, which is why I rely on WordPress and DreamHost. They’re great. Set it and forget it! And if there’s ever a problem, there’s always somebody I can talk to.

When I had to settle on an e-commerce partner through which I could sell our films online, TopSpin came highly recommended. Many self-distributing artists I look up to use TopSpin, and their product, by far, seemed the most appropriate for what we wanted to do.

Turns out, that was one of the worst decisions I’ve ever made (and I’ve made some bad ones).

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I recently premiered a short film called Avarice, and it would be a great understatement to say that a few things went wrong. A LOT went wrong. It’s incredibly frustrating to work yourself to a point of exhaustion and to end up looking like an inexperienced kid with a movie while showing it to hundreds of people. Learn from my mistakes because I know I certainly did. Here are 3 things I will forever do before a screening.

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