For an independent filmmaker, getting funding is like searching for the Holy Grail. Creators follow lead after lead, hustle their way into festivals where they may or may not meet someone interested in their work, and they often wonder if seeing their project through to completion is even a possibility in the end.
Large studios are mostly part of even larger conglomerates (for example, Comcast owns Universal Pictures), which means that the bulk of the money for their films comes from the same high-dollar investors every time. There is no room for newcomers, as almost every major-studio film in Hollywood is commissioned based on big data and audience algorithms that no one has access to except those already entrenched within the studio.
Crowdfunding is a viable solution for raising the money necessary to complete a film, but obstacles like weak audience engagement, copyright issues, incomplete data and platform fees make this an imperfect option for most independent creators. Some of these obstacles, however, can be removed by simply improving the crowdfunding platform’s technological foundation.
Filmio, which is built on blockchain, provides the infrastructure for a coming surge in crowdfunding for films and other projects. This “blockfunding” surge will be the catalyst for the changes fans have been waiting for and independents will finally have navigable access to funding for their projects.
Creating in the Dark
Big Hollywood studios start promoting exciting upcoming releases up to a year or more in advance. Many of these releases, however, are major franchise films, remakes of popular originals or glammed-up, modernized re-releases. The creativity coming out of movies with huge budgets is stagnant, likely because the money all comes from the same source. Investors stick with the studios that have brought them success, and studios are taking fewer and fewer risks in order to ensure a return for their investors.
Independent creators have to go about their fundraising very differently than studios with larger budgets. Up-front funds go mostly toward beginning the project rather than promoting the film. This means that independents do not have the opportunity to gain the momentum that early exposure brings to a project in its infancy. Instead, filmmakers must complete as much work as possible so they have something to show, then begin to look for additional funding to finish and promote the project. This is often where a production stalls.
Compounding the issues that lack of exposure causes for independent productions is the absence of audience data. Studios naturally hold onto the information they gather about audiences as tightly as possible, and streaming and crowdfunding platforms either hide the data or just don’t collect it. This means that independents are relegated to creating in the dark, with no quantitative information about what their fans want to see. Weak engagement between creators and fans leads to very little qualitative data as well.
Additionally, copyright issues plague the entertainment industry, particularly on platforms that don’t offer protections for intellectual property. Creators are hesitant to use crowdfunding or streaming sites when their life’s work can be stolen in the blink of an eye.
Flipping the Switch
The Filmio Decentralized Platform (FDP) is based on blockchain technology that addresses all the major concerns for creators looking to fund their projects, whether they are just getting started or they need some help finishing the work. On blockchain, copyright issues are simple and inexpensive to resolve because all content is loaded onto an immutable platform and given a timestamp. The information is nearly impossible to tamper with, and it is always completely transparent where the content originated, which parts of a contract have been satisfied, and which transactions have taken place.
On Filmio, creators are able to build hype around their projects even if they are only in the idea stage. Fans and creators have incentive to interact and engage with each other through the exchange of FAN tokens. This makes production a collaborative process that increases exposure and fan enthusiasm while giving the creator valuable feedback about their progress. Fans are not mere spectators, but are instead participants in creating the specific projects they want to see.
New Forms of Film Financing
Crowdfunding democratizes investing by making it accessible to everyone and letting fans decide what is most valuable to them. Filmio takes it one step further by incorporating the crowdfunding concept into a suite of blockchain features that make the whole process collaborative. Not only do investors and fans get to participate in and promote the entertainment they consume, but creators and investors also have access to key metrics that indicate potential for success.
Filmio provides a secure, transparent platform that comprehensively supports the creative process. The security of blockchain means that no data will be altered, and anyone has access to the entire transactional history of a project on a public ledger. Audience preferences can easily be recorded and analyzed, making it easier to predict performance. When an investor likes what they see, they can create a contract directly with the artist, meaning that there are no intermediaries and no additional fees.
Filmio’s platform supports the next generation of creators, fans and investors, stimulating the entertainment industry’s growth now and into the future.