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We make films.net subscription film club?!

A website has popped up on my instagram asking if I want to join a film club that makes short films once a month - but I have to pay to be a part of it?! And a substantial amount to get more senior roles?! doesn’t this fly in the face of the indie film-making ethos?! you pay for the chance to work on a film?! If you are just starting out, or even like me keen to make shorts as a hobby/progress your career - paying to work on a production IS NOT the one. Go work on a production posted here instead, where they’ll treat you better even if you are not getting paid. This ‘club’ is a money-making exercise of our passion for film & I am firing the gun here saying we should boycott it! we make films .net - Bog off!

  • Making high quality shorts is an expensive business. They are made, either by getting funding or (for the majority of them) they are self-funded by one or two individuals. Everyone else is either working for expenses or getting a very low rate (which is paid by the people funding the film).

    From what I understand with this club, the idea is that everyone working on it (and this is hobby level) contributes financially towards the films so they can pay for equipment and location hire, catering etc. Nothing wrong with that. It is a film making co-op like used to exist back in the day (Filmmakers Co-op, Four Corners Workshop, Panico etc - some of these may still exist; I don't know). Nothing wrong with a filmmaking co-op. I was a member of one back in the day and so were many who now work fulltime in the industry.

    I am in no way associated with this club, but I do know the guy who's idea it was. He is a proper director. I did some steadicam for him last year (nothing to do with the club; it was before it was born). He is a solid guy; not a rip-off merchant.

    For a lot of people, getting the experience and skills to enable them to work on more serious stuff is hard. Surely, this sort of thing is better than paying a lot of money for a course for a paper qualification that doesn't really mean anything. (although there are some very good courses out there, there are also others that are just taking peoples money).

    The We Make Films Club is certainly not a money making excersise. It is a genuine attempt to help people indulge their passion for amature filmmaking without having to max out their credit card.

    3 months ago
  • I'm with Mark on this. I've had a look at the website and it seems like a decent set up. It's aimed at those people just starting out, or taking their first steps in filmmaking and want some guidance and mentoring. It also offers opportunities for those wanting more challenge.

    I don't see this as 'paying to work'. It's more in the context of a film school set up, with a greater emphasis on hands-on experience. It's about providing a safe and controlled environment for creativity; not everyone wants to take the risks involved with responding to jobs on SP though I completely accept that is one way to get filmmaking experience on the cheap.

    As Mark has pointed out, it's not the only organisation out there helping people get together to make short films. Action on the Side also does this kind of thing and its a cheaper alternative: www.actionontheside.tv/new/

    p.s. I'm not connected in any way with AOTS, but I do know the person who runs it and she is a brilliant mentor with a solid track record of helping others.

    3 months ago