Written by: FFT Webmaster | June 20th, 2010
Producer to Producer
A Step-By-Step Guide To Low Budget Independent Film Production
By Maureen A. Ryan
Michael Wiese Productions
Studio City, CA 91604
One of the “Indie World’s” most highly respected producers, Maureen A. Ryan (Academy Award- winning Man on Wire) offers a tour de force guide to producing low-budget features.
Ryan’s agenda is comprehensive and unparalleled in a single 400-page book. She starts naturally in development and takes us through obtaining rights, log line, screenplay, proposal, pitch, financing and distribution. Chapters 2 & 3 address the breakdown and scheduling necessary for us to create a budget with many helpful hints to keep your project “lean and without pork”. Chapters 4-10 deal with a potpourri of issues including presales, equity investors, casting and hiring the casting director, the production triangle(fast, good, cheap), locations, legal matters, and insurance. From Chapter 11-13, she discusses production and principal photography, the wrap and an amazing look at the technical issues a knowledgeable producer must know to make sense of the complex postproduction process.
The remaining five chapters cover audio, music, archival issues, marketing/publicity, film festivals and the proverbial 800 lb gorilla: distribution and sales. There are helpful recap lists at the end of each chapter, wonderful checklists and interviews with experts. Having taught “producing” at the college level I can assure you that this single volume is a mini-course all to itself. If you are an “indie” contemplating a feature, this book is an essential read.