crowdfunded-moviesThis domain was available for registration at the time of posting, and I think it is the ideal name on which to launch a platform that supports filmmakers in the fund raising process.

My train of thought is evolving on from a comment I made on DocumentaryTech. DocTech reported that “Born and Bred,” a documentary about young boxers in East LA, failed to secure the $50,000 in funding it was seeking through crowdfunding. The documentary looked pretty interesting to me, but if crowdfunding is to work it has to be more than just asking for money.

I think the way to make a crowdfunded movie (or concert, or album) work is to give the contributors a sense of real participation. i.e. two last scenes are filmed and they vote on the choice. Or they get to see the casting tapes for the main roles and vote to select. This way they get some real value add, and the film benefits from the wisdom of the crowds. That’s where comes in…

The service would provide filmmakers the technology that allows them to interact with contributors to their movie. The movie makers would list an outline of the film along with what they are offering the crowd (they would just tick from a list of pre-defined interface options):

  • sountrack choices
  • sountrack submissions accepted for vote
  • casting video votes
  • name of movie votes
  • name of movie submissions accepted for vote
  • dialogue options
  • ending choices
  • film artwork votes etc.

For each of these options the platform provides an interface for the movie maker to upload/manage the options, and the voting technology for the users. In addition to this it would provide contact management/forum software for updates as the movie is being made.

Would budding movie makers be willing to pay to use the service? It could be tiered, one fee for listing and then monthly for the contact management. The latter fee would come out of successful fund raises. For the first hundred submissions the listing fee could be deferred until successful raise. If anyone more qualified than me to carry this idea forward likes it, then go for it! It’s easy to have a good idea, but the profitable companies are the ones that execute. If the domain has gone by the time you go to look, there are plenty of others that are suitable and availabe to register.

Here is a story about filmmaker David Brundige, and how he is going about crowdfunding without the help of a dedicated platform: David’s First Movie – Crowdsourcing Funding.

In 2010 I believe that we will witness a whole host of tools emerge that help the command and control companies benefit from collaboration. I wonder if that will include any of the big movie studios? I very much doubt it, but imagine choosing between Cameron Diaz and Julia Roberts from casting tapes…I wonder if I could crowdfund Season 5 of the OC, it couldn’t be worse than Season 4…

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