Once the hero in The Princess Bride is brought back from being â€śmostly deadâ€ť by the character played by Billy Crystal, and is sent off to continue his quest against all odds, Crystalâ€™s character exclaims â€śHave fun stormin da castle!â€ť
In addition to being a great line, it is emblematic of so much in life. Letâ€™s start by considering our assets to create Liberty Mean as a feature film mockumentary. We have honed a script over 2 years incorporating feedback from Script Reviewers for the Motion Picture Academy and Funny or Die. We have a terrific cast and crew, and completed principal photography using wonderful locations across Central Ohio. We have appearances by Foghat founding member Roger Earl, the North Coastâ€™s favorite son/musician Michael Stanley, and famed comedian Alex Ortiz.
Our liabilities? The fact that few independent comedies are made due to the high risk that they wonâ€™t connect with a large audience. Most independent films are focused on the horror genre, as they have shown to be the most reliable route to independent success. We also donâ€™t have a big name actor that helps identify with his/her built-in fan base. Throw in an unknown rock band that parodies songs of their idols, riskier yet.
Based on these risks, some might say that itâ€™s over even before the film is through post-production. Are the independent film fates just fiddling around with us or what? Perhaps they just want us to feel like weâ€™re doing well? Could we actually produce something of value that connects with the right audience? Inconceivable?
The number of film festivals has exploded in the recent past across the nation and the globe. We plan to target festivals that give us the best chance to create a buzz. Following that, there are so many more ways to distribute independent film today than in the past, from Video On Demand, to iTunes, to Amazon, Hulu and Netflix. With the internet and the right analytics, opportunity exists for independent film to find their crowd.
Yes, there is but one working castle gate, andâ€¦ and it is guarded by 60 men. One must embrace the sobering reality that very few independent films are overwhelming successes. But if you go into it with that realization and consider your assets and liabilities accordingly, you can mitigate any downside. Not to mention the opportunity to work with people that have a passion for creating something completely different, and having all kinds of fun while we are storming that castle.
If we only had a wheelbarrow, that would be something.