12 Tips to Make a Successful No-Budget Film
If you are a new filmmaker most likely you are facing the problem of wanting to making an awesome film but you lack the funds. Don't panic! You may not be able to blow 10 cars on that action scene you have been dreaming about, but you can still make a pretty rad film on the inexpensive side if you consider these next tips.
There are plenty of local filmmakers and hat would be hungry for work to expand their demo reel and portfolio. Instead of having them “work for you” collaborate with them in your project, that way they would be passionate about it.
2- Be resourceful:
You don’t need to buy new props or wardrobe for the production design of the film. Look into your own belongings or hit the local Goodwill to get awesome deals in unique pieces.
3- Keep it local:
Work with local cast and crew only. That way you will support your local film community and also avoid expenses in lodging and transportation.
Have the crew carpool to avoid costs in gas and mileage. Also, this will help you cut the film production carbon footprint.
5- Film in public areas:
Film permits in Orlando cost $0 dollars. This is an awesome incentive from the Orlando Film Commission to support the local film community.
6- Work with natural light:
The use of sunlight can go very far when used appropriately. You will need a bouncer and a diffuser and you would be set to be the sun’s best friend. Also, no expensive lighting can emulate the perfect magic hour.
7- Use your camera, your friend’s camera or your phone:
You don’t need the ultimate camera to film a good movie. If filmed right and considering good cinematic practices, even Iphone cameras can go places.
8- Schedule smart:
The more days of production, the more expensive a film is going to be. Schedule smart considering your locations and filming the less days possible.
9- Use stock footage:
Stock footage is awesome for B-roll, specially for those extra expensive shots that would requiere a long trip. You will be good using it, even the most expensive Hollywood films incorporate stock footage on their productions.
10- Keep the background minimal:
If you have been in the film industry for a little while, you will know that background talent or extras end up costing a lot of money even if they work for free. Nobody knows why, but they usually come to set extremely hungry and use a lot of production resources. If you can have your neighbor, friend or even some crew members be the extras, you would be saving a lot of $$$.
11- Never say “I’ll fix it in post:”
Fixing bad sound or bad filming in post-production is usually very time consuming and more expensive than most people think. If it only takes one extra take to get a good shot, you would be better at getting it on set. Plus, it is always going to look/sound better if recorded right.
"I'll fix it in post"
Please recycle on set and have your crew and talent label their water bottles. Unlabeled drinks are usually wasted while being halfway full because people loose them. When they are labeled they are easy to track and therefore people will finish drinking them before opening a new drink.
Good luck on your film!