BOB / The Business / The Process

The Charting of Uncharted Waters

The intrepid filmmakers huddle in their windblown tent on a snowy mountain in Utah.

Eight filmmakers climbed the mountain on a Friday afternoon in February, then huddled together at the top to try to figure something out. Granted, the mountain climbing was done in comfy vehicles. And the huddling was done in a toasty warm condo overlooking a heated, outdoor swimming pool where young aprés-skiers could work on their cannonballs.

So yeah, the circumstances were a little on the cushy side. But the “figuring out” part? Now that was the challenge.

In an era when the cineplexes are becoming more and more exclusively the domain of big, “event” movies, and in an era when DVD sales that indies counted on are plummeting, how do the stories that independent filmmakers feel that they were put here on this earth to tell happen? The small stories, the ones where maybe nothing explodes and nobody has superhuman powers, but that make us feel connected as humans.

There is an emerging platform (the one you’re using to read this post) that seems like it could hold some of the answers. But small, indie movies can get lost in the internet like a bottle in the Pacific. And let’s face it, paying for movies on the internet isn’t quite to the point that it is for music. Or even books. But it looks like it might get there. Especially for movies that are a good fit.

And the question those indie filmmakers are trying to figure out is what can we be doing now to position ourselves wisely for when that time comes?

A big question for a small group of filmmakers huddled in their condo high up in the mountains of Utah. Some good ideas came from that meeting. The beginning of a map. A pretty cool map. A map to a place where maybe these beautiful, small, human stories can not only happen, but where maybe they can even thrive. Good things can come from the internet.

We’ll be meeting again soon (plans are for once in Utah County and once in Salt Lake County in the next few weeks) and inviting like-minded tellers of the stories to join us.

Wanna come?