August 31, 2016 at 9:23AM


Why Indie Filmmaking is Like Being in a Horrible Relationship

One of my favorite unproduced screenplays is a story called LOVE STUPID about a misguided bachelor named Mark Morone who – traumatized from a painful childhood romance – sabotages every adult relationship before it gets too serious. He literally believes that his love endangers women, and fears for their physical well-being when they get too close to him.

Then he finally meets his match – a woman named Hope who misinterprets his self-sabotaging ways (she thinks he’s suicidal) and tries to save him from himself. Also, Hope has a rare condition where she can feel no pain. Of course, Mark leads her into several perilous situations – even as he is running away. In the end, they fall in love and live happily ever after, despite themselves.

Sometimes I wonder if indie filmmakers are self-saboteurs. We fall madly in love with a story and go through great pains to make it work. We bang our heads trying to get the script right. Even when we complete the “perfect script”, we know going in that the odds are against us.

Most movies never get finished – the funding dries up or something inevitably goes awry. We know that even if our movie does get completed, we are up against strong odds to get it into festivals, in front of an audience and into distribution. Yet we try, for the love of film.

Inevitably we get hurt. We max out our credit cards. We alienate friends, family and colleagues. We agonize over why critics fail to see our genius and a mass audience continues to elude us.

We feel like failures until … the next can’t miss high-concept idea strikes us down.

Why, oh why do we love film when it fails to love us back? Here are 5 good reasons for the heartache:

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