Sit Down with Robert Milazzo Pt 2


Distributing Your Film Online


Lesson Info

Sit Down with Robert Milazzo Pt 2

Well, we have someone you've had a professional relationship with. Talk about regional artist, regional creators, regional makers. Mr damn. Mccomb directed a film called beyond naked, which was on the platform the indie flicks platform. And we have him now on a live skype would love to bring him in. Hey, dan. Greetings from creative live in san francisco. Thanks for joining us. Thanks, this's. Robert allies. And we have told running mate of your shilla wondering with us today. And she cited you is as this I'll use the word clinically a success story. Talk a little bit about your film beyond naked and and the integrating it into indie flicks dot com and and what's happened since and that's sort of tail in brief. Sure. Uh, well, it is interesting to hear what you guys saying about how you, you know, where you live and how that affects your ability to make films. And for me, I really wanted to make a film about something that I knew about. And and I also being being just kind of myself an...

d one of the person it was really small. A small team s o I kind of impose some constraints on myself when we started this film and and one of them was I wanted to make a film about something that I could literally walk to from my house because I knew that you know, budget is going to be an issue and especially doing a documentary but it's hard to come up with and so I before even settle on the topic for the film, I really had chosen a bunch of constraints that for me helped me I don't know about other artists, but for me I scary thing in the world for me would be being handed a big check and said, go make a film about anything you want to, so I like it when I could be a little focused and constraints kind of helped me be creative. So this this don't grow out of that I had an opportunity to study with werner herzog briefly and I asked him like, how do you know when you are onto a good idea for a film? And he said, do something that fascinates you if it fascinates you, you must do it, you know? So I so I literally came back from that experience and landed in seattle the same day as the fremont solstice parade was happening, and it z is a crazy tradition that that's been going on in seattle for a little bit more than twenty years and some a few you know early on it twenty years ago not quite know there was a a couple guys that started writing naked in the parade and it's grown to life to thousands of people who do it and so I I saw that I thought ok that's within walking distance of my house and I'm fascinated by it and it sounds interesting so that's where the idea for the film came from well I love the fact that it came from an idea I think you know the tale can wag the dog so easily you know I talked to students all the time before they've even made a movie and chill maybe you can speak to this they say how do I get my movie scene? They haven't written anything yet what is we're when does distribution come into the plan? What is the what is the advisable when does the light bulb go off isat during shooting before shooting before creation and dan made a documentary which is a different you know it's a slightly different anatomy lesson but what does distribution come into it? I actually am a firm believer that you should start thinking about distribution when you're creating your project think about the path think about like really step back up to the seventy thousand foot level and just get a visual and a picture of an idea of exactly where you want your film to go just as you would plan a trip to go somewhere you want to have a destination right? And you want to do the research along the way to get there I think what's interesting is that when you work and like see the commercial world or in advertising or something you're given the call to make a creative project there's a certain budget and a deadline boom you get going distribution has been established at the creative point eight so as filmmakers we need to define distribution before we at the creative point same for us as it is for you know, the the other industries so I'm a big fan of it being at the beginning I love that then going back to your your journey it's I love where you started in the sense of what turned you on to the project what was your for lack of a better word professional film role of decks like a time did you know film practitioners did you know film entrepreneurs or thinkers? And was that intimidating if the absence of those connections what what was it like pre project thinking man do I even know anyone in film? Well, it wasn't that intimidating to me because I really wanted tio to make a film that I could make and so for me I didn't let the fact that I didn't know a lot of people stop me and and and I on that just got started with it, basically, and things float out of there. There's, a great organization in seattle, that's been really helpful for me, called this seat c docks and it's, a seattle documentary association. And so I joined that, and I started going to their meetings, and I met enough people that on the climactic day of the film, where we needed a lot of crew to be able to teo, to cover all of this crazy festival with one hundred thousand spectators were there, and thousands of cyclists, I was able to feel the crew of about forty people, and they were mostly connections that made through c docks and some other ones as well, but that price, three quarters of those people came from c docks directly or indirectly, so community is definitely important, and I on I'm grateful, too, that seattle does have a community of filmmakers who are eager to pitch in on projects that that sound exciting and have a possibility of completed project that they want to participate in, well, it's, the most common motivation. I hear it from my students. Why? What? When I asked, why do you want to go to a film school? They say community? Maybe the rogue film school has a different definition of it, verner knowing verner, but you both have that in common. How did she'll? How did you meet dan? And was was it all through the film? How did you and dan and find each other? Uh, I am on the advisory board of the seattle interactive conference, and dan was part of, you know, making a lot of there, what do you call that? Dan it's, not the promotion video, but it's the you like a teaser conference teaser video way always the people who founded it, bryan, rache, bach and gloria are really creative people in there, like let's, create something really fun to get people excited about coming to the seattle interactive, and then they say she will you should be in because you're so passionate or whatever, and dan showed up and we shot on, didn't we could climb up through the hole and went on the roof and shot that? Actually, I didn't make the cut that year, but but the next year I did, and so dan makes really creative content he's shot some other stuff for me and he's just he's, a perfectionist, but in a great way, like, you're really meticulous about lighting and all that stuff and he's an amazing, um, communicator, so we had a great report to create stuff very quickly and really creative language way just connected on that level and then I found out he had this movie and I said, what are you doing it with it and he's a volunteer and I said, well, put it on indie flicks so that's that's how our relationship has grown and we still have other things in common that we're working on. So did when sheila said indie flicks did you say what's indie flicks? What was the reaction? Oh, I had heard of indie flicks and she goes, you don't have to speak at that scif and some other places I knew about it my initial hesitation about indie flicks was the legal agreement because, uh, you know not I wasn't really familiar with the legalities of of signing up with someone, and one of the things that looked a little scary to me was that in the legalese that talks about how you could be liable if anyone you know you could be liable for for indie flicks his expenses if you if someone's decides that your film is it wasn't accurate and like that and so I was a little nervous because the film portrays a lot of people naked and in that brings up all kinds of emotions for people, and so we did our very, very best to get signed releases from everyone but we we couldn't we couldn't be a hundred percent certain that we've got everyone because there were literally thousands of people, and so we talked a little nervous about that, so it took me a little while to kind of warm up and and she looked convinced me that it would be a good idea to get the film out there anyway, despite that and s so I did, and it's been great what's interesting, you point out something that I think is crucial for young filmmakers and students, the sort of low or high impact of doing with legal realities in the sense. And, you know, whether it's music licenses or getting clearances on subjects on again what I think you've done so expertly here, sheila, is you've created a kind of it's just my really my reaction and deflects this is just a less intimidating way to get your work out there and deal with those realities. I mean, you're really midwife ing it. I feel like you're a good wife in it with an organization that really is looking out for you versus kind of poking holes in what you don't know you're great. And now it's a it's, a kind of enlightenment tool versus which is often the case that kind of you haven't done this and you haven't done this and come back to us when you've done it feels like you're helping filmmakers for lack of better words we are and I think that it's I am a fan of simplicity I am not a fan of big words I am I like to know that I one hundred percent understand something and when I don't understand something I want I will work hard to get to that point and I feel that I owe that all of the filmmakers I need them to be to have a good understanding and to not be afraid and, you know, at the end of the day you could always just take the film down that even the most rock solid phone book thick agreement I have found those agreements open up, they bring up so many horrible things that could happen that people go in thinking that and then they're like they kind of take that position. I have now agreements with some very large distributors and high profile filmmakers and they are a huge fan of this him very simple, simple filmmaker agreement they're like and you've got people signing this it's so simple and I said yes, if someone was to sue someone about something, they will find a way so I just introduce all the ways that you can do it why don't you just like let's agree did not work together if that's the case, right? So it's worked really, really well, you truly are an advocate and just meeting you, but even if I hadn't met you just looking at the way you've stylized and architected indie flicks to me, I feel like it's a place for advocacy in the sense of I feel like indie flicks would be on my side if I distribute something dim. Let's look at the stock market of it all when you created the film and put it on indie flicks, what was that experience? Like watching it work or do the work for you? Did you feel removed? Is there a part of you that felt I can't control it now? It's kind of with the gods of cinema? Did you like that feeling? Was that it slightly helpless feeling? Do you recall those sensations? Well, for me and probably for a lot of filmmakers, I think when you're done the film and it's already screened at festivals and and then it's just sort of this this it's sort of like nothing happens it's like you kind of wonder like that that happened that I would like to see them in a year and a half working on this project and and and it's now out there and and then you know it's sort of silence so for me I mean really all I wanted was for people to have an opportunity to see the film and so festivals are very limited opportunity I mean, you know, not very many people go to festivals and so it's I I just want to get it out there to his people as I want to see it and this indie flicks is a great option for that of putting you right on the spot. Mr dan would you do it again within the flex? Oh yeah definitely for sure although would I make another documentary film? Yes, I would but it's I haven't started another feature length film I worked on a lot of shorts but it was a very expensive took about a total about three years of my life and so I'm going to be careful about the next project I choose well, they say dan the good news is the next project will choose you that's what they say that's true that's what hitchcock said hey dan thank you so much man thank you so much from american time and being you know to me film whether it's business or or success is word of mouth I mean I think it's it's empirical to a certain extent but people really need to hear from the doers so thank you again for making some time for us today thank you

Class Description

Your film doesn’t have to appear in theaters to find its audience. Distributing an indie film online is an effective way to increase the visibility of your movie, get compensated for your efforts, and validate your work.

Maverick independent film entrepreneur Scilla Andreen was done with the one-sided deals brokered by the big guys. She wanted independent filmmakers and producers to have more options, so she built one: – a platform for DIY film distribution that Variety magazine calls, "The Netflix for Indie Films." In Distributing Your Film Online, Scilla will detail the distribution landscape and teach you how to find your audience online. You’ll learn:

  • How to distribute your film online
  • The benefits of online distribution
  • How to monetize filmmaking

Scilla will discuss the no-nonsense architecture of online film distribution and help you reduce and navigate the layers of distraction between making a film and having people actually see it. You’ll learn how the IndieFlix model works and how it, and other online distribution platforms like it, make money for independent filmmakers.

If you are ready to find an audience for your indie film, Scilla Andreen can show you how it’s done online.


a Creativelive Student

This course is only an introduction to online distribution for films. It doesn't go deeper in any aspect nor gives you concrete steps depending on your film project. So if you've never heard or thought about distribution is a good place to start in a few hours, but if you are looking for a deeper analysis or information to reinforce the online distribution of your film, it isn't there in my opinion.


Was this an instructional video, or a plug for a commercial enterprise. Light in detail, this series does offer a few gems for those searching for answers. It did put into perspective the odds of finding distribution in a marketplace crowded by competition where everyone is looking for ways to maximize a return on investment and offers alternatives to those wishing to tackle the job of online distribution themselves. Because "once a film is completed, the real work begins." it is important to know what these alternatives are. David W. King, Michigan Movie Media 2.0