Dear Bill Mechanic,
I am writing you this letter as I have just finished reading your speech and the countless reviews online about your "state of the film union address." Added to this, I wanted to let you know that I heard the exact same information only yesterday at the Vancouver International Film Festival from keynote speaker Peter Dekom. I know times are tough but I am asking you to read this letter carefully.
I heard from someone (who will remain anonymous) that you had a poster of a Tarkovsky film on the wall in your office? If so I must commend you on your artistic integrity as a mogul. I also know that you had issues with the bosses regarding a little film that I loved called FIGHT CLUB. The way I see it Bill is that the people who restrict artistic license and fill the screens with boring brands are doing this because they too have to answer to the banks, investors, lawyers, sales agents, and foreign market buyers who are all for the most part years out of touch with what the people really want. At the same time we need to realize that business is business and that we need a way of creating a system that creates a risk mitigated approach to filmmaking while allowing creative genius to flourish without having to put unwanted hair and teeth in play to make sure of an opening weekend.
Bill...have you ever heard of Crowdfunding? Essentially this is the art & science of empowering the audience to help assist you raise unencumbered funds for your production by pre-selling the film in advance to the people who support your creative endeavors. Imagine if 1 million people around the world gave you 15 dollars to buy a copy of your 15 million dollar indie film? Imagine if you had no one to answer to and that negotiating of talent deals had nothing to do with "if and when" scenarios regarding distribution mg's from overseas buyers. Imagine not having to put a bad actor on the poster just so you could satisfy the German cable network....imagine being debt free on the delivery of your film with 1 million marketers behind you telling their friends to go and see your picture.
Of course crowdfunding also works for the industry in other ways as well. I can think of about 100 films that if you presented the idea to the crowd they would never have let it get made in the first place. Perhaps crowdfunding is the film business litmus test or market maker as films made in this manner become more of a futures product, not unlike oranges...or pork bellies. I mean once you've consumed a film you rarely revisit the experience.
Anyway...the real reason I am writing you is that our little group have developed a fantastic crowdfunding engine/utility for filmmakers to use and quite frankly Bill...we'd like you to try out our system.
We think that we've done a great job and we are inviting you to the BETA of our project over at www.biracy.com
We saw this state of the union coming 24 months ago so it is timely that your address comes on the eve of our launch. It's like we're connected Bill.
As far as I see it Bill there are talkers and doers. We're doing it in a couple of days with or without you. We'd like a guy like you to come along for the ride because hey.....you have a Tarkovsky poster on your wall and you made FIGHT CLUB!
Put some skin the game over at www.biracy.com or contact me directly at dgeertz AT biracy DOT com
P.S. Can you also tell David Fincher that I want to talk to him as well?
Founder + President
The Biracy Project