Financing & Distributing the Documentary

Find new business strategies for marketing your documentary in a changing landscape.

The goal of reaching an audience starts with first steps in the development and financing of the film project. Students learn how to match their passion for a subject with a successful strategy that guides them from research and proposal through production and into release. What subjects 'travel' well? What are the real and often subtle approaches to concept and style that make the difference between a successful film and one that's hardly seen? Students in this workshop learn how to translate ideas into compelling proposals, trailers, and pitches and where to take them to raise funds. Particular emphasis is placed on the global television marketplace, a primary source of funding and support for documentaries. Students receive insight into the key networks, their relationships with other funding sources, the roles of pitching forums, work-in-progress screenings, and film festivals. Projects already in development are reviewed in advance of the class and undergo a hands-on development process throughout the week. Students with projects can expect intensive feedback that help them take away revised versions of their proposals, budgets, and trailers. The class also reviews proposals and trailers for successfully completed projects, including those currently in the midst of worldwide distribution.

Instructors

Louise Rosen

Louise Rosen is a media executive with over 25 years experience in all areas of the international television and film business. After many years as a distributor, she launched LRL in 1996 to focus on working with independent non-fiction producers as an editorial and business consultant, sales agent and distributor. 

Current projects she is representing include films such as THE PROMISE, POWER STRUGGLE, A FIERCE GREEN FIRE, GREGORY CREWDSON: BRIEF ENCOUNTERS, HANS RICHTER: EVERYTHING TURNS, EVERYTHING REVOLVES, BROTHERS HYPNOTIC, SEEKING ASIAN FEMALE and THE MOSUO SISTERS. Louise is also a credited co-producer on many projects.
 
Louise tutors and lectures at Documentary Campus Master School and at festivals and conferences including DOKLeipzig, Thessaloniki and HotDocs. She is on the Advisory Board of IFP/NY, the board of the Maine Media Workshops + College and is also the Executive and Artistic Director of the Maine Jewish Film Festival.