10 Tips That Can Help You Make Your Low Budget Film

By Srikanth Kanchinadham. Posted on April 17, 2015

Making a full length feature isn't as difficult as many make it out to be. While we aren't suggesting that it's a walk in the park, there's a method to it and if you can organise yourselves properly, plan ahead and keep your head on your shoulders, there's no reason why you can't do what many before you have done.

Some simple tips can help you keep your budgets under control. Just follow these and you should be fine. And if you want to know more, then click here to know what Anurag Kashyap has to say on zero budget filmmaking.

1. Weekends Are The Best Time For Shooting

Always try to schedule your shooting on the weekends. Most of the suppliers will charge you only for a day if you take the gear for the weekend. So take the gear on Friday and return it on Monday. This might not be the case with all the suppliers, but there's no harm trying to negotiate.

2. Hope For The Best, Plan For The Worst

It is evident that you will be facing one problem or the other. All that matters is your attitude in dealing with the problem. Be calm and tackle them. Plan ahead and budget for things to go wrong so that if they do, you are still on top of things.

3. Film Software Works Wonders

There are a lot of applications that make your job easier. Use these apps to save time. Star with these apps here.

4. Schedule The Shoot Based On The Availability Of The Actor and Location

Break your script based on locations and actors required. Try to complete the entire sequence assigned for a location within the stipulated time. Ensure the location isn’t messy after the shoot.

5. Say NO To Credit

Do not take massive debts. It can leave you stranded with high interest rates. Return the props and equipment in time to save up on cash.

6. Know Everything About The Location

Prior to the shoot, have an in-depth knowledge about the location. Know if more than one scene can be shot at the same location. Know the site well enough to avoid any wastage of time.

7. Use Online Deals & Thrift Shops For Props

Use minimal wardrobe and props for the shoot. If it's necessary buy them online from sites that offer deals and discounts or from thrift shops in local markets. Know if any props are available for rent. Try to minimize your expenditure on such items.

8. Request Cast Members To Use Their Own Wardrobe

Unless your film is sci-fi or fantasy, chances are that the costumes will be everyday wear. Cast members should have what you want them to wear. If they can get their own wardrobe, nothing like it. Make sure you reimburse if any of the materials are damaged. Keep a track of what is being used and what is required.

9. Feed Your Crew

Feed your crew healthy meals. It is necessary that you display your affection to your crew. A healthy and happy crew is a great asset to an indie filmmaker.

10. Keep A Count Of Your Expenses

Always have a count of how much is spent on a particular day. Keep cash or a card handy cause you never know what expense might come up. Make sure every single penny is accounted for.

These tips should hold you in good stead. If you want to read more, then head over to Indiewire.


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