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First Full Length Project


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#1 Samuel Henegar

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 03:20 PM

I've decided to roll the dice and spend this year making a full length documentary. My father has agreed to bankroll the project (yes, I'm ecstatic) and I'm exploring/learning about my options for acquisition/output. I'm looking for a tried and true workflow.

I have experience with production (producing, writing, directing, editing, camera op, lighting) but my knowledge of acquisition formats and output/film transfer is extremely limited.

My goal is to submit the final project to MAJOR film festivals, and hopefully sell the project to the highest bidder.

Can anyone offer advice on acquisition?

Thanks in advance!
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 03:32 PM

A lot depends on the type of doco you'll do. For me, i try to figure out what what's the longest I may need to shoot for, if it's 2 hours, well it's a lot easier to pop in a new tape and throw the other one in my pocket than to offload my XDCam's cards (assuming no break). If it's just interviews I'm doing, well, hell, could shoot that on film!
Then there's also location. . .easier to bring and shoot with a bolex in the middle of the amazon than it would be, perhaps, to use an HDCam (since the bolex doesn't need power!)
Most docos, though, will go for a tape-based solution. Easier to archive, faster to change 'em, and pretty straight-forward post.
I'll be doing on in Africa in Jan tapeless. . .we'll see how that goes .
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#3 Ralph Keyser

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 06:11 PM

Most film festivals require a DVD of your project for submission. Some are accepting Blu-ray as well, but there's not much need to worry about a film out for the festival circuit.

I'd agree with Adrian's advice about picking something that will make your life easier in production. If this is going to be a one-man crew sort of project, then pick something that's easy for one person to handle. It sounds like you have production experience, and picking something that you have experience with should not be underrated. Also, for documentary work, I'm prepared to argue that sound is as important (more important?) than picture, so don't leave that out of the equation.

Adrian, I'll be interested to hear how the tapeless doc in Africa goes :)
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#4 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 08:00 PM

Ha you and me both! I'm buying myself, hopefully, a solar-powered backpack to help keep things charged.
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#5 Alex Ellerman

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Posted 12 December 2008 - 07:45 AM

My advice to you is change your goal. Your goal should be something less financial and more along the lines of: I want to make the most kick-ass documentary I can. I want to illuminate the situation in Darfur. I want to reform the US prison system. I want to follow this crazy band for the next year.

You are a first-time doc maker. Concentrate on making something kick-ass.
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