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Micro Budget Film School Podcast

Ever wondered how other filmmakers managed to run the gauntlet, getting their micro budget films made from nothing?

Well, I’ve asked all the questions (and more) from the filmmakers responsible for 7 different micro budget films ranging in budget from $8k to $60k, and will release their answers in a 7-part documentary PodCast series, called The Micro Budget Filmmaker PodcastEnter your text here...

How 6 filmmakers built their feature films out of nothing

Unlike ‘fly-on-the-wall’ podcasts that just slap a microphone between two people having a chat, this is a documentarian approach to the Micro Budget Filmmaker Podcast, slicing together the 7 different interviews and cross-examining their solutions to the same problems. Each episode will focus on a new problem, and will see how the different solutions vary- or perhaps what they’ve all got in common.

Why? Because Micro Budget Filmmaking is never the same each time around. 

In the words of Michael Rabiger & Mick Hurbis-Cherrier: “In the absence of the money, the stars and the industry machine, a filmmaker must get lean, smart, resourceful, innovative, and creative… and thats when things get really interesting.”

I’m looking at how things got really interesting for these 7 filmmakers. This PodCast is going to be an incredible resource to give you a widespread understanding of the different ways that you can tackle the problems that you’ll face making your micro budget film too.

NOTE: All interviews for Episodes 1 - 3 are recorded and will be released in early 2019. But you can start with the manifesto above, which will show you what you're in for.

Who are the featured filmmakers?

Joseph Sims-Dennett: director, co-writer and co-producer of Observance

Observance‘ was shot in 11 days on a budget of $8k, and yet it secured a North American distribution deal with a limited theatrical run.

Joseph Sims-Dennett is brutally honest about how painful the shoot was, and how they managed this extraordinary film right after he got fired from his job.

Nicholas Andrew Halls: producer of 54 Days

54 Days‘ is a survival thriller set in a an underground bunker, made on- coincidentally- a $54,000 budget, and shot in a few weeks.

Nicholas Andrew Halls doesn’t just give an elaborate insight into how his production came together, but also throws around some absolute nuggets of wisdom, inspiration, and passion for the micro-budget filmmaking community.

Megan Riakos: writer/ director of Crushed

Megan Riakos joined us to share how she was determined to make feature film ‘Crushed‘ on limited cash, to prove that she was a high quality and reliable filmmaker even when resources are limited.

Especially passionate about improving the lack of female-led, and female-directed film in Australia, Megan took to being the change that she wanted to see in the world. This is the charm of Micro Budget Filmmaking- it’s about shifting the power from those who have it to those who need it.

Daniel Monks: writer/ producer/ lead-actor of Pulse

Pulse‘ is a story about a gay, disabled teenager who magically transforms into a beautiful woman.

Writer and lead actor, Daniel Monks, who himself is both gay and disabled, reveals the inspiration for this story, and why he knew he had to make it- even if it meant doing so on a very limited budget, which included $23k through a successful crowdfunding campaign.

Jeffory Asselin: writer/ director of Pinch

Jeff Asselin has won virtually every film award that his state has to offer- many which he won before making his feature film, ‘Pinch‘. Made for $40,000 and shot in 4 weeks, his feature film beat other local featured films- some made on a multi-million dollar and celebrity-led- for the coveted ‘Best Film’ prize at CineFest Oz.

Mekelle Mills- writer/ director/ producer Zoe Misplaced

A true example of guerilla filmmaking, Mekelle Mills shot feature film ‘Zoe Misplaced‘ for $8k on the streets in Sydney around the part-time work schedules of her generous cast and crew.

In her interview for the Micro Budget Filmmaking Podcast, Mekelle shares the particulars on how she managed to put together her film, and also why she is starting ‘Below Five Zero Film Festival‘- a film festival specifically for filmmakers producing feature films on a budget of less than $50k.

Steve McCall- writer/ lead-actor of The Toll

Although produced many years before the other films featured in this podcast, ‘The Toll‘ is perhaps an even greater feat since it was made just before DSLR video camera technology took off. Shooting on a budget somewhere between $10k and $20k, ‘The Toll’ was written by Steve McCall and he stars in the lead role.

Steve recalls how he managed to get the film together with director Zak Hilditch (who later moved on to make feature film ‘These Final Hours’), and how they designed the film to suit the limited resources they had available.

Cool! But what are the episodes about?

Here is the current Episode List:

  • 1
    Why Bother? In this episode, we look at where their passion for film came from, and why these 7 filmmakers decided to fight their way uphill to get a feature film made on nearly no cash.
  • 2
    Money Trouble: Today we look at how the 7 different filmmakers handled the money for their film. How much was their budget? How did they even get the money? How did they spend it? Was it even enough?
  • 3
    Rally The Troops: This episode will look at how the filmmakers navigated the casting & crewing-- who did they need? Did they pay industry rates? How big was their cast and crew? How did they manage them when money was tight?
  • 4
    Sleepless Nights: This episode looks at how long each filmmaking team took to get their film made. How long were the schedules, how many days did it take, and more importantly- how did they get it done in a short amount of time?
  • 5
    Post: The exhausting shoot is over- but that's only half of it. How did they turn their gruelling work into a watchable film? Did they have to patch up any problems in post?
  • 6
    Distribution: How did they go in film festivals? Did they get Distribution? What about the knockbacks? And the gains- how did they get their films seen by audiences?
  • 7
    Momentum: What happens now? How have their films paved the way for them to move on to greater things? This episode looks at what doors opened for these filmmakers after their films were completed

The Podcast will be released in early 2019.