We outline four factors which can influence documentary film production costs.
A question we often get asked is ‘I want to make a simple 5 minute film about X. How much would that cost?’
Our answer? ‘It depends’.
For organisational and online video production, a common costing rule of thumb is often said to be ‘$1000 for every finished minute of video’. However, we find this costing rule to be wrong more often than it is right, possibly because the rule seems to have been around for aeons.
For documentary film-making at the lowest-budget level, ‘$1000 per finished minute’ is the cheapest starting point for costing. We recommend using $2000 – $4000 per finished minute as a beginning point or ball park. And you should expect that even a ‘simple film’ may cost more. Why? There are many elements which come into play when costing a film. In this article we detail four factors which can influence cost, and provide some tips on how to reduce costs if your budget is really pushed.
Image attribution: Svilen.milev
The story behind ‘Reflections of Flood Recovery’ by Lucinda Horrocks.
When the 2010 floods hit the small Victorian towns of Clunes and Creswick Jary and I were living in Melbourne. Melbourne is not so far away, but, like many in Australia, it was the devastating, tragic floods in Queensland that year which captured our attention and empathy. The Clunes and Creswick floods became half-remembered headlines. So when we were engaged to document the story of residents who were afflicted by these local floods, I learnt a lot. I learned there is nothing ‘small’ about a flood. And I heard some remarkable stories of survival and resilience.
This is the story of how we put together the film ‘Reflections of Flood Recovery.’
Feature photo by Tim Burder.
How to prepare for your first meeting with a production company.
Film making is a complicated business. Sometimes clients feel a little intimidated on their first meeting with us, the production company, because they don’t know how to talk ‘film’. They needn’t be. If you are thinking of commissioning a film, there are certain things the film-makers need to know, but these things aren’t tricky and they don’t involve technical film talk. Here are five things you should prepare for your first meeting.
Feature photo by Nick Macco.
Reflecting on the achievements of a busy year.
2012 was an exciting year for us, where we turned a corner from working on the business to working in the business. The year saw us launch a series of collaborative films with new partners in Ballarat, Daylesford and Melbourne, views of our fledgling YouTube channel increased tenfold from 260 to 2600, and we moved offices from inner-urban Footscray to regional Ballarat.
The story behind the ‘About the Readings’ micro-documentary by Lucinda Horrocks.
The Reluctant Producer
I had never been much of a Dickens fan.
I found his writing convoluted and impenetrable. As I saw it, he sacrificed plot every time to indulge his detailed, unnecessary characterisations. I was a frustrated and impatient reader, skipping over paragraphs to get to the next part of the story. I often gave up early in a book attempt. Jary, on the other hand, is a huge admirer, and revisits at least one Dickens novel a year.
So I had mixed feelings when invited in 2009 to see a production of ‘Charles Dickens Performs A Christmas Carol’, with an eye to creating a video promotion. (Jary, needless to say, was delighted).