As I am trying to figure out what to do with my first feature, Night Before the Wedding. I have had my eyes on the developments of Jamin Winans, Kiowa Winans, and the cast/crew of the indie phenomenon INK. I believe this passionate and courageous filmmaking couple and their team is at the forefront of where indie film is going.
I have gotten to know Jamin and Kiowa fairly well, as they have gotten to know Karen and I. This synergy has carried over to the casts of our respective films. INK cast members had a strong presence at our NBTW World Premiere last month. That love has been reciprocated by my NBTW cast members, many of whom have seen INK twice.
It's hard for me to understand why in the collaborative world of filmmaking that so many involved in independent film are so selfish. Most are out for themselves. You see few examples of independent artists championing and curating the works of others in the same shoes. The reality is that making it in indie filmmaking is so difficult, so strenuous, and so back-breaking. You would think that we independent filmmakers would know better when it came to marketing and promotion. You would think that we would know that we cannot make it alone.
That is something I have come to realize and that is why you have witnessed me reach out and connect with filmmakers like Jamin and Kiowa. Like Gary King, Paul J. Alessi, A.J. Rickert-Epstein, Jeff Grace, Steve Nguyen, Laura Russo, Rich Mbariket and a slew of others. Learning from them has been invaluable to me as I attempt to seek out the best path for my film career.
Having said that, if you are a filmmaker, I encourage you to not only promote your work, but promote the work of other independent filmmakers who's work you love and admire. Make connections with other filmmakers. On a very small scale, I have seen the results of my efforts in promoting INK. Some people have even gotten confused and thought the film was mine. (Jamin and Kiowa would probably argue with you that I am being too modest with the impact I have had. : )
What is that you say? You have no time? Well, if you have time to promote your own work, you can easily take a few moments and promote the work of another. Retweet a message on Twitter. Post a trailer on your Facebook page. Email a link to some friends. Encourage others to see the film in the theater or on dvd.
And if you are afraid that you will just be wasting your time. Please know that I have experienced an amazing return on 'investment' from my effort in promoting the work of others. I am often amazed by the generosity, as well as the lengths other filmmakers have put in for me during these early stages of promoting NBTW.
It is so easy for me to get a little off-track. This blog began because I wanted to highlight the current path of INK. It is one that I encourage you to learn more about and study. Fortunately, Jamin just wrote an amazing blog where he recaps his distribution strategies and why he has made some of the choices he has made. I believe this is a must-read, especially if you are a frequent reader of this blog. So, without further delay...
PS - Their blog is one of the best ones out there. Subscribe today.
PPS - And even bigger news, INK earns a theatrical run in Los Angeles beginning Friday September 11th. Jamin will be on hand for a Q&A that same night at the 10:15pm showing. I cannot recommend the film any higher. I truly hope you have the opportunity to see it in a movie theater.