Bring Up The Audiences!
Bring Up The Audiences! By Her Aim Is True Director, Karen Whitehead
Ask just about any indie filmmaker and they will tell you their single biggest fear once they have successfully completed their film is whether anyone will actually see it! This worry, verging on paranoia is understandable when a project takes several years of often painfully slow fundraising and unexpected barriers to filming before it can exist.
Early on in any production, filmmakers should have identified their potential audience and throughout filming, built connections with them from regular newsletters and all means of social media available. We are all learning to be “experts” on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, WordPress, (you name it!), while we set up our shoots and hang out with the subjects of our films.
Unfortunately, this is not enough, and not even the whole story. Getting your film out into the world is also about navigating where and how you can “meet” your audience with your film. What starts as building a community around the project – because this is the life blood of any independent film and the reason we ask you to join us on Facebook, Twitter and sign up to receive a regular email newsletter – is that you are our partners in the storytelling.
Now we are here: fortunate to be screening at a major film festival – Seattle International Film Festival, and selected for the documentary competition, too! Details here –
But I have that paranoia still! Sitting in my office wondering if the audience we think is out there, will appear. The “have film, need audience” anxiety!
The festival audience is our first vital line of communication and we hope the creators of the next sharers of Her Aim is True
Because this is not just about film festival screenings, this is the start of our journey to cast Jini’s story widely. We must attempt to reach out and inspire other audiences which is why the film’s fans connecting to the production helps us know who wants to see this story, as well as where and how they want to experience the film. The audience’s active involvement brings the film alive and enables it to disseminate through the thinking and lives of communities and groups beyond festivals and even beyond our knowledge. Maybe you know a community that is unknown to us but ready for this story!
New forms of distribution for films are emerging daily, so possibilities are endless. Perhaps we need to be more like Jini Dellaccio, creative in our approaches and ready for every new challenge – and that means thinking outside as well as alongside the (film festival) box (office).
PS: Please meet me in Seattle!