Making It – Ep1 – Budget Bombshell (Film Budgeting & Script Breakdowns)

Making It – Ep1 – Budget Bombshell (Film Budgeting & Script Breakdowns)


– When you’re a writer
you’re writing creatively, you’re not thinking about
production necessarily. The most part you want that to
be something that producers go, “Wow. This is something
I would want to see.” But you have to get the most out
of the dollar amount you have because we want to have a triumphant
experience with this film. Hey everyone, my name is SC. I’m a writer and producer
here at StudioBinder. So about a year ago, I came up with
the idea for a single-camera sitcom. A young woman who inherits the CEO ship of a
mental health empire from her father. Has to find a new
chief of medicine because her’s is caught
up in this big PR scandal. So she heads to the nearest clinic
to poach their head of medicine and in turn gets confused and
ends up running into a doctor. Who’d she then hires and
then later she finds out that he’s actually
a schizophrenic man. He’s not a doctor,
he’s the patient. Some of the show’s I might
compare to are “30 Rock” or could compare to
“Arrested Development.” “- You said he was all right. – Yes, he’s lost his left hand
so he’s going to be all right. – You son of a bitch.” The script’s 23 pages. There’s a number of different
characters as a Father character, a Mother character. The assistant character I’m
very excited to write for, she’s got a lot of
comedy opportunity. We’ve got something like
four or five locations in it. And when I came to
work at StudioBinder, I brought the idea with me
and I pitched it to the CEO. And he actually proposed
a really great idea. We do the proof-of-concept
and film a short film. And they do a
behind-the-scenes making-of. Yes. Exactly. This is how I dress every day. It’s going to start
with budgeting the film. Getting locations, hiring
crew, casting auditions. This whole documentary
is essentially step by step taking you
through the filmmaking process. And you’re going to see
it, all right here. Okay, so I want to start
by breaking down my script. Let’s talk about breakdowns. So what a breakdown is is it’s where you
take your script and you actually go over all
the needs of your production. The report of all the
elements of your scene. Elements are things like props,
wardrobe, set dressing, special effects, whatever it is that you
might need on the day. Danielle steps in the foreground
downs to double of scotch. So I need to make sure
that I mark this Scotch not only as a glass for the day but also as some sort of liquid that we’re going
to want to bring. In my experience both at school and just in the
production world generally creative people
don’t do breakdowns. But the breakdown really sharpens you
both as a writer and as a director because now you’re being thoughtful
about every little piece of your script. For instance, with our project we had a situation where one
of our characters throws paint on another character. And we sat there and we
thought do we need pink? Could we have him
slap him in the face? And the reason that we landed
on the paint was because we needed to force him to
have to change his clothes so that it would be motivated as to why he transforms into
this doctor character. You know,
that is invaluable that process. Not only do you gain perspective on the production has to
physically take place. It makes you a much
more whole filmmaker. So we’re going to mark the
group of journalists as extras. You do this reports so that you have those
things on the day, but also so that you can get an
idea of the budget for your project. – Today, I am working on the
budget for “Mental Mistakes.” – Herman’s our producer and another writer
here at StudioBinder, he’s a good friend of mine. He is the most cartoonish
and wonderful human being you will ever meet
in your entire life. – That’s where I come in. Let’s say you need a
grip, a gaffer — Are you going to
ruin every take? So what do you need to
begin creating a budget? First and foremost, you need to understand
the parameters of the production that you are about to attempt. Is it a pilot? Is it a series? Am I working on a
million-dollar film or a $5,000 proof of concept? It’s very important to
know this number upfront so that you don’t
get grandiose dreams let’s just say smaller and
less grandiose project, After reading the
initial full script, I have come to the conclusion
that we could bring this in if I had everything
going my way. For about fifteen thousand
dollars just a little bit over. However, I’m going to try to cut that down as much as
possible in anticipation of our budget actually being
cut as much as possible. There are a few
things in every budget whether you’re an independent
filmmaker or a studio producer. There are certain unavoidable costs
that come with every film production. Everything from craft
services to your camera. You know, you’re going to
need insurance and permit also talent fees and crew fees. All of these are inescapable. For my lead cast,
I have them at $125 day rate. The next big cost is
our location aside where we’re going
to film everything because right now I have
in my budget $2,000. When I go through my budget line by
line and see where I can get it down because I know we don’t
have $15,000 to spend. And I have a few red flags
right from the get-go. We have more than 30 characters,
15 speaking roles, 16 extras. We have 7 locations in 23 pages. We’re going to have
to cut this way down. So the great news is
you got a great script. It’s really funny. I think it’s really,
really doable. The bad news is I would love to get it
all in the can for about five grand. – Herman’s coming from a place
of caring about the production. He wants us to be able to do this and he
wants us to be able to do it correctly and he want to be able
to pay the crew correctly and he wants to be able
to get the right camera. But when you hear that sort
of number you start thinking, Okay, something’s going
to have to get cut. – The biggest way we can cut
down on our expenses right now is going to be in our talent. – I mean by “talent” you mean cutting out characters
of the entire thing or do you mean not having them
like come two days in a row? – If there are characters that
that you do not need to introduce let us know right now. Another thing is location. It would be great if we
could do it all in one place and for the smallest
amount of money. The last thing I want to do is
curtail any creative freedom in any of those elements that attracted me to this story and this script in
the first place. – If it’s getting it
down to two locations that’s a little easier. But your ask is that I need to
get it or that it would be easiest budgetarily to get
it down to one. Because what it means is cut
a critical part of the script. – But as a filmmaker
and a producer, I know that we have
a very strict budget. We want to make sure that
what we’re filming is only the elements we
need to get the point of the proof of concept
across and nothing else. We can’t afford it,
our budget can’t afford it. I guess it’s important for us
to sort of back up here and say, how long do we want this proof
of concept to be? – Right. – And what is essential? We have three
characters, right now… – I knew he was
taking it seriously. I knew he was going about it in
the most professional way possible. But that’s never a
great feeling at first, especially if you’ve
devoted real good hard work and sweat into a script. So you need me to cut actors? – Yes.
– And you need me to cut locations? – Yes.
– Yeah. No, I understand. The feeling can
be scary at first but it sharpens you as a writer because you’re now forced to actually
consider what actually does matter which characters do matter,
your strengthening those characters because you only have the
money to pay five actors rather than nine. Is an opportunity to get to
write the script a second time and to get it right. Failure is not an option. You just buckle down
and figure it out. So then we go down. Press star now… Otherwise, please wait and you
will be joined into the conference. This is going to be the super
fucking loud conference call bullshit while she sits there and everyone
goes, “Hey, this is Tim.” Tim’s on the line. Hey everyone. Do you have a great idea for
a film or a television show? Want someone to
help you produce it? We’re looking for writers
and directors for season 2. So if you have a script
that you want to direct click the link in the description and
submit your project to StudioBinder today. Thanks for watching and we’ll
see you in the next video. ♪ ♪

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  1. Remarkably calm reaction to a 66% cut in your budget! "So you'll have to do it in one location. With zero actors. And no props. Also we're taking away your script."
    "Oh. Ok"

  2. This is exactly what I need! I'm currently in the process of making my first short film and seeing how it's really done and what things to consider is going to help so much. Thanks StudioBinder!

  3. I LOVE EVERYTHING that you guys are doing!!!!!!! I WISH I could just runaway and come live with you all! I have so much to learn…

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