A radical way to protect your artistic visionJul 21, 2022
When we share the philosophy of Lean Filmmaking (especially the part about getting audience feedback) the first question most filmmakers ask is…
What about my artistic vision?
The assumption seems to be that this collaborative method of filmmaking undermines creative integrity.
But we feel the opposite is true.
We want to protect your artistic vision and give you more creative control.
If you reeeeeally think about it, the traditional film industry isn’t doing a great job at supporting the artistic vision of most filmmakers. It’s common knowledge that getting a film released requires compromise. Only a privileged few directors (often white, cis-het men) have true creative control in the Hollywood system.
This is because films are normally very expensive to produce and distribute. There never seems to be enough money in the budget, or time in the schedule, to fully realise the artistic vision.
And this is true for high budget films too, not just indies!
Actually, big budgets increase the pressure to soften any sharp edges, erase challenging subject matter and blunt idiosyncratic creative voices. For investors to recoup their millions, a film must appeal to a broad audience.
But there’s a radical way to protect your artistic vision and increase your creative control.
Are you ready?
Here it is...
Get fan feedback early and often.
We don’t want you to invest time, energy or cold hard cash, until your idea is validated with fans.
Paradoxically, by finding an audience and actually talking to them, you’ll have more creative control, not less. And it will also improve your chances of a successful film.
This flies in the face of conventional wisdom.
Filmmakers are routinely told that audience feedback will damage their artistic integrity.
But that’s not necessarily true.
It’s just that most filmmakers get audience feedback at the wrong time – once their film is complete.
By then it’s too late.
It’s heartbreaking to hear negative feedback (even if it’s constructive) at the end of the filmmaking process, because in all likelihood, the film can’t be changed or improved at this late stage.
But fan feedback received at the right time can preserve the artistic value of the film.
Working in a cross-functional squad, and using iterative Make-Show-Adjust Cycles, make it possible to take full advantage of timely fan feedback.
You don’t have to sacrifice your artistic vision by using the Lean Filmmaking Method.
Rather, it gives you a framework to better express your innovative, bold and daring ideas.
We can’t wait to see your distinctive film!
The Art of Lean Filmmaking, book and course available now. Start making an indie feature sooner than you ever thought possible.
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