One Year Later: Traditional Distribution or Self-Distribution for a Micro-Budget Feature

In 2019, when filmmaking has long since been revolutionised by digital technology, when movies shot on smartphones open at Sundance, when there are festivals dedicated to vertical filmmaking, and when so many people are making features that the ‘mystique’ of it has long since dissipated, the one area that still seems to hide behind a shroud of secrecy is distribution.

We’ve all heard the adage getting your film made is only half the battle; the real work begins when trying to sell it. Many filmmakers don’t understand the best practices when it comes to distribution, and choose to explore that path only when forced to, and I am prepared to admit that I am one such filmmaker.

Is working with sales agents, producer’s representatives, distributors the most viable method to release a micro-budget feature film? Or is self-distribution the best approach? One year later, after releasing our first micro-budget feature, myself and my partner Sarah Jayne are asking ourselves that very question.

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How We Shot a Feature Film in One Night

Not only did we shoot a feature in a single night. And not only was it entirely improvised (no script, no shot list, no regrets), but we decided to do it on the craziest and most chaotic night of the year... New Year’s Eve.

The film is called Friends, Foes & Fireworks and it explores relationships, love, friendship, and the truths we try but fail to keep to ourselves.

We have been asked one question numerous times: “How did you actually manage to shoot this in a single night?

The second question, often unspoken, but lingering on lips nonetheless is “…and have a story and structure that actually makes sense without a script?

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