Film Finance - One Brick at a Time
American filmmaker Kurt Burk has set up a production company with a completely novel way of raising capital to fund his film projects – one that may get around the problem of financing new work in a conservative film funding climate. One Brick Productions is selling off equity shares in Burk's films one brick at a time.
Burk's first offerings come from the pen of the legendary creator of Disney's 1960's cartoon classic Underdog W. Watts Biggers. The Disney feature of Underdog is currently in production, slated for a 2007 release date.
One Brick is an alternative to the traditional Hollywood slow moving finance model, inspired by the pixel ad sites, but actually going back to a much older system – that of raising capital to finance a new building by allowing people who want to see it constructed buy one brick at a time, until the whole budget needed is secured.
Just as each of these building bricks bore the name of the contributor who paid for it, One Brick Films' contributors have their names permanently etched on the One Brick website.
"Financing a film is one of the hardest things to do and I feel this idea is a way to allow people from different backgrounds to both be involved in the process as well as get a service in return," Burk explains.
The site is divided up into a million pixels which are all for sale. Each grouping of one hundred pixels ($100) hotlinks to the owners' site, and users can buy as many as they want. Each hit is registered, allowing the owner to track their exposure.
NAMES QUEING UP
One Brick Films first project will be A Woman Called Job, a surrealist love story (takes place in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA) written by Biggers, who worked with Burk to co-write the screenplay.
Australian heartthrob Adam Garcia (Coyote Ugly, Fascination, Riding in Cars With Boys, Love's Brother, Confession of a Teenage Drama Queen) is attached to star in the production as the lead character.
Lee Atwater, Veteran gaffer and cinematographer Ray Peschke (Fascination, Woman Thou Art Loosed, JFK, Natural Born Killers, Born On The Fourth of July, Usual Suspects) has committed to shoot and Ed Marx (Coppola's produced Jeeper's Creepers I & II, Swimming With Sharks, Peaceful Warrior, It's All True) has committed to edit and supervise post-production. Burk is set to produce and direct.
On March 24th 2006, Myspace.com chose One Brick Films along with four other filmmakers to feature on its main film page to their 65,000,000 users for that week in an effort to help promising independent filmmakers build a fan base. Myspace.com has been instrumental in helping musicians reach millions of fans and sign with record labels and the company plans to bring the same success to young independent filmmakers.
Filmmaker Magazine (www.filmmakermagazine.com) contacted Burk to inform him that The Man Inside teaser film will be featured in April's upcoming issue listing their pick of the ten best films on Myspace.com.