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At what stage is suitable to contact Sales Agents or Distributors for a Feature Film?

Hi SP friends,
Currently I'm developing 3 features. At what stage is suitable to contact Executive Producer, Sales Agents or Distributors for my self funded, low budget Feature Films? Any names suggestions?

  • If you have 'star' cast (that's proper star, like IMDB top 100 star) then now, as you'll be seeking presales.

    If you don't, when it's been produced and you've got something to show them :)

    2 years ago
  • Since these are self-funded, I'm not sure why you'd need an Exec. Producer. They are typically the money people. Unless you're looking for additional funds, never show a distributor an unfinished film. Get a sales agent once the film is finished, and months before the festival circuit.

    2 years ago
  • I came to this business after many years as a CEO in the Engineering Industry (the why is a long story) so I had to learn this one from scratch. I went to a couple of UK Courses, (Stephen Follows, Chris Jones) and went to Cannes where 350 of us had an intensive 3 day "Producers' Course", run by some very high powered film Execs, who would talk to you one to one, and as a group in Q & A sessions that were helpful and very informative.
    At Cannes of course you can make contact with a multitude of Financiers, Sales Agents, distributors most of whom will give you 10 minutes if you have an idea, and can present it properly.
    I am a firm believer in teasers (60 seconds MAX giving the flavour of the film) . Not a trailer - a trailer is taken from the feature after shooting, a teaser is a pre-shoot concept piece. A good teaser opens doors! You need a budget - lots of good templates available - a properly written script (Celtx/FD) plus very good synopsis, in fact anything visual to sell the project.
    At the meeting , be on time, look professional, wear clean, neat clothes, get a business card prepared (Vistaprint £23/500), produce some 1 page leaflets in hard copy & pdf for sending later. Keep notes on who you see and what they talked about. What genre do they want? What is your genre ? Is there a fit ?
    In my 35 years of industry I leaned people do business with people - if your target likes you - you have won half the battle. Most important follow up - in 10 minutes after you leave you will be forgotten.Follow Up !

    2 years ago