Film Making Courses In Bangalore – Zero Budget Film
Film Making Courses In Bangalore – Strategy for Producing a Zero Budget Film
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Strategy for Producing a Zero Budget Film “a director must be a policeman,
a midwife, a psychologist, a sycophant and a bastard.” – Billy Wilder
There are several areas of concern when developing a no-budget film. – Film Making Courses In Bangalore
Each area must be considered in advance and potential problems solved with fresh ideas.
The more you can bend and twist the traditional film professionals’ notions of what can and cannot be
done, the more likely you are to earn their respect and the chance of a proper job.
The more you are able to surprise and entertain audiences with the story, the sooner the audience and
the film buyers will forget the miniscule budget and offer you a handsome reward for your film.
Hint – The astute producer with a no-budget film seeks either notoriety or celebrity status.
A movie with no budget is about how much cable you can afford to rent and how many power points are
available for you to tap into.
The most successful movies for this budget will typically take place in one or two locations which
are geographically close to each other.
The locations are few so that the film can be shot relatively quickly; they are close together because it
is expensive to move.
Hint – Film Making Courses In Bangalore
The most successful careers in America are launched with the same script: take a gang of
kids to a house and chop them up. Reservoir Dogs, Clerks, The Blair Witch Project, Night of the
Locations can make or break your film. A great location can add thousands to your art
department budget – literally for nothing. The trick is to find the right location for you and
The most important element an astute producer looks for is a location that they can have
complete control of during the time the cast and crew are on location. Then, a good location
is one that can safely accommodate the needs of the script, the crew and the performers.
A good location will also be close to first aid, police and fire stations, and public
transportation. Of course it will be photogenic. Lastly, a good location must be cheap or free.
Naturally, this is an extremely difficult combination to source. Often, a more lateral
approach to locations can be used. If you are to shoot in an area of a town or city try to
choose different locations within a ten minute walk of a central location. This location
should be one where you can park a van or two, and will be the area where your catering truck
A second van can double as a mobile camera and sound equipment store. From this central
location you can then walk with your equipment to each location, minimising costs and
maximizing time on location.
An useful technique . you can work on is, find several different alleyways .where a catering
van could park. then set off in ten minute walks in each direction, scouting for possible
locations: a park, a school yard, a mall, a house and some wasteland beside a railroad
It takes several attempts to find the right location for the catering van and then research
If you discover that each location has two very different exteriors: the front and the back. By
some clever and cheap art direction, you are able to use each location as if they are two,
thereby adding scope to the story, and production values to your film.
Locations that add visual appeal could include; the bank vault, the tube station, the double-
decker bus, the church hall, the bar, the restaurant, the nightclub, the airport hangar,
the remote house, the forest, the abattoir.
These are all clichés. What breaks the cliché is the action: the bank vault flooding, the
restaurant under siege, or the woods on fire. If you already have an clear idea of the story
he wanted to tell, and also have some pretty good ideas of how you want it to look, with
these elements in mind, you can write an extremely good first draft in two weeks. And
while pre-production commences you can write the second draft.
The search for locations also impacts on the story, with key elements of the scripts
modified to fit in with new opportunities.
Talent Strategy – Film Making Courses In Bangalore
Attracting big name actors to a project like this is fraught with difficulty.
Usually they will be unconvinced that you can make them ‘look good’ with no money, and especially with
A strategy here would be to allow the actor to direct. Tell them it is an experiment, and only if it
works out will you try to sell it. Or give a bit player a leading role, and dazzle them with some
special effect you are able to pull off with no money. Then see if they want to see themselves killed
in a new way. You are essentially improving their show reel.
Another increasingly popular strategy is to use non- professional or semi-professional actors. Depending
on your skill as a director this is also a valid way to find cast, but you may need to include extra
rehearsal time to accommodate the less experienced Hint Named actors will help you to sell your film.
Also, try to get a cast that is as varied and physically striking as possible.
Special Effects Strategy – Film Making Courses In Bangalore
Try to find a novice special effects supervisor, and/or a fight/stunt director by trawling through
art, drama and film schools. Simple punches, slaps and falls look far better when a fight director is
involved. A good fight director can also create a good brawl scene. A well choreographed fight scene or a convincing
special effect will enhance the visual impact of your film dramatically and give you whole story possibilities.
Shooting Schedule Strategy
Keep the shoot as simple as possible. Perhaps you can shoot the film in chronological order. This allows
the performers closer contact with the script, and creates more of a ‘stage play’ feel to the shoot.
Everyone working on a film should be paid, and paid well, including yourself. But, what if the film won’t
get made unless a whole lot of talented people donate their time for free? How good is the screenplay? How
good is the producer? And what payment de ferral programme will you have in place?
Stay clear of gunshots and swordplay unless you have a licensed professional on set.
If you don’t, you could end up in prison. A producer discovers that he is able to book his
local church hall basement for free most days of the week. He decides to take advantage of this, follows
the strategies listed above and gets an excellent script written by a professional writer in exchange
for partnership in the profits of the film. It is a one-location shoot set in a church hall
basement. The story is the wedding banquet after the wedding and the relationships between the bride, the
groom, and the bride’s three ex-boyfriends who are all guests at the wedding. The script has been
professionally written and rehearsed through a series of workshops and
rehearsals, during which the writer has carefully rewritten the script to create a dozen characters.
The cast meet at a rehearsal room (which could be the location) and rehearse. The working day is light. It
could be from 4pm to 10pm to allow for day work, or from 10am to 4pm to allow for evening work. In either
event, the day is professional and well run. Tea and coffee are available. Sandwiches are prepared by the
More rehearsal, as above. The actors are realising that they are getting professional on-set rehearsal
time, which there is rarely time for in a more traditional kind of production.
Additional rehearsal, but this time with the director of photography and the sound recordist. They watch
the rehearsal and make notes. The costume designer also attends and takes measurements. The men will be
wearing tuxedos (provided by the local tailor in exchange for publicity) and the women will be wearing
formal gowns (supplied by the actresses). Notes are made regarding hair and make-up.
1. Choose a budget that is realistic for your project.
2. Choose a project that is realistic for your budget.
3. Make the most of what you can get for free.
The first thing you need when you are making a film is film stock.
Post-production – Film Making Courses In Bangalore
What makes a good editor?
A good film editor must be a natural storyteller, possess the ability to negotiate the various business
and political minefields when dealing with a director, and producer.
The entire outcome of the film, and the investment by financiers largely rests in the hands of the editor.
A skillful editor can mask poor performances and technical blemishes, and assemble a final cut where
these imperfections are concealed from the audience. Scenes may have been photographed poorly and
performances might have been less than inspired, but a skilled and creative editor can assemble the film
so that the audience will never see these imperfections.
Hint Involve your editor at the earliest possible stage of the production – preferably at script
Everyone working on a film should be paid, and paid well. But, what if the
film won’t get made unless a whole lot of talented people donate their time for
free? How good is the screenplay? How good is the producer? And what payment
deferral programme will you have in place?
Useful Tips for Low Budget Film Production
First Thing First
Before you start working on your zero budget film you must internalize and always keep in mind why you have
decided to go ahead and create your film for no money. Because when you advance further in the
process of movie making you will be tempted more and more to spend money. If to make your life easier or
your movie more attractive, temptations will be there every step of the way. But always go back to the
reason that made you make your choice in the first place. You either don’t have it or you don’t want to
spend it. Either way, you have made a choice, a decision. So stick with it!
Getting Started In order to get you started on your movie, the first thing you must do, is of course write the script.
Writing a script offers you endless possibilities. Who knows where your creative mind will take you. But
while you can feel free to write on any subject, you must always bare in mind that you are on a tight
budget. That means that if you are planning to write the next star wars trilogy, or dream about the next
Matrix, your life as a producer may eventually turn out to be hard to impossible. So try and fit your
script to your main limitation – your budget.
Planning Your Budget
This part is relevant for every film, no matter how high its budget is, but it is especially relevant
when you plan to spend very little money on the film.
Make sure you plan your budget from start to finish, to the smallest detail. If your budget is a 0 or
close to it, your planning just gets much harder. You must plan closely and exactly how to execute your
film without paying for it. And one more thing always, but always have a plan B, some times a plan
c. what happens if your make up artist decides to bail out on you in the middle of the production, what
happens if your leading actor becomes ill. Working on a low budget leaves no room for delays. Every day you
are held up may have a crucial influence on your budget, or lack of it.
Casting and crew – Film Making Courses In Bangalore
When you film a zero budget film, you obviously have no money to pay actors or crew. So finding volunteers
to act in your film is a crucial factor. Where can you find such volunteers? Who will be crazy enough to
take the time and make the efforts required to complete a movie? And for no money? The most obvious
place, and the place we would start looking at is at universities and colleges film and theatres
departments, or acting studios. There is nothing like eager students or aspiring actors, to get your zero
budget film started.
Location, Location, Location
When you are short on money, you cannot afford to build fancy settings. So what you should do is let
nature take its course for you. Try and find locations that support your story in the best
possible way and are also easy to access and film. Finding the best location for your movie may take
time, but it will make your life much easier when you start filming.
Gear Up The one, most important piece of equipment you will
need is a camera. If you don’t have a camera, try to borrow one from a friend, or from one of your cast
members. If all efforts fail and you must buy a camera, buy a decent one. The quality of your filming
highly affects your ability to later market your film. You can get free software for your editing and
sound. The internet is filled with free software for that very purpose, so there is no need to pay for it.
Last but not Least – Marketing Now you have completed your movie, it is time to
market it. The internet offers some endless opportunities for free or very cheap marketing. The
most obvious free marketing tool is of course youtube. You can post a trailer to your movie, hoping
it will create some buzz and possibly interest in your movie. Independent, low budget films festivals
are highly available, both online and offline and you can find some highly comprehensive resources for film
festivals online. The Zero Film Festival takes place in New York and Los Angeles and presents only self
financed films, so that’s a really good option to start your marketing campaign.
So what are you waiting for? Go make your movie. And don’t over spend it
Tips for Keeping Your Dream Alive
• Keep two books with you: one for networking and the other for ideas.
Make sure you see the forest and the trees. Finely craft the details but don’t forget to see the big
• Hammer away, distilling the story, boiling it down to its essence. Don’t be afraid to cut material.
When you are stuck with a blank page, do something different.
• Keep your contacts and portfolio up to date.
• Create your own opportunities, and find niches that you do best.
. When you don’t have work, your job is to look for work 40 hours a week.
• Save for a rainy day.
. Try a variety of compositions. See how each one tells the story differently.
• Create interesting characters and cast them
Create a website for yourself.
• Promote yourself
• Don’t make enemies or speak badly of others-it is a small world.
• Take classes in improvisation, script writing, drawing, psychology, etc.
• Create a clip art file of ideas, tutorials, and inspirational images.
• Gain experience by experimenting using trial and error
• Find a good mentor to guide you.
• Don’t just watch movies; study them until they yield you their secrets.
Don’t be afraid of making changes, and learn to be objective about your work.
• Remember that you are on your hero’s journey, and it never ends.