One of the main endeavors that has been consuming most of my time is working with Sideline Pictures. The company is Vincent Barnard's movie production company and soon to be much much more than just that.
Early in 2014, Vincent and I set out to create a long-form episodic narrative called Blue Card. The idea was first and foremost to create a compelling project on the lowest budget we felt possible. Equally as important, however, was using this series to test the waters in the ever murky distribution landscape of today's film industry.
After raising a little over $700 in a month to produce the web series through our IndieGoGo campaign and about $300 of our own money and contributions from DuBois Business College for the episode that started it all (and acted as Vincent's final project for film school), we successfully completed the series on budget. Upon completion we premiered it at the Reitz Theater (a local DuBois theater) to a packed house and then proceeded to test out video on demand through VHX.
If we wouldn't have run out of money at that precise moment, I'm confident we could have capitalized on the momentum and carry it through online sales. However, we did run out of funds and decided to release the series for free. Eventually Backlight TV picked it up and released it on their platforms.
The next step brings us to the current project we're working on, Blood on the Leaves. This is our first step into the feature film world (although Blue Card was long enough to play as a feature film during theater screenings). What makes this project unique is not the micro-budget, however that is certainly a challenge we are enjoying tackling, but our distribution model. After years of watching the current distribution models shift rapidly, we're confident we've figured out a plan that can bring profit to our meager budget. This is phase two-- if you will-- of Sideline Pictures. The goal is to develop a sustainable model of production for micro-budget films in rural areas.
For Blood on the Leaves, we've brought on new crew and some really talented cast. Be sure to follow botlmovie.com and the various related social media sites (all BOTLmovie usernames) to see where that journey takes us.
I'm thoroughly excited to bring Vincent's newest script to life and take the dive into independent distribution with this film.